Often when politicians announce they are running for office, they seem happy about it. Or at least try conveying a sense of eagerness to face the challenges ahead. But when Donald Trump announced Tuesday night that he was running for the presidency for the third time in three consecutive elections, he seemed upset.
Trump – who dragged his party to defeat in the 2018 midterms, lost the White House in 2020 to the oldest man ever to hold the job, incited a mob of revolutionaries to attack the US Capitol, impeached twice, and contributed to another GOP implosion in the midterms. last week—he was mocked and ridiculed for his announcement. He read the prepared words slowly one word at a time, reluctant to ignore anything unimportant that popped into his mind. Perhaps Trump’s spirits were low because he was reading the negative press coverage leading up to his announcement and saw faces in the crowd, which were nowhere near the gathering of GOP elites. ordered in previous meetings. The biggest bold-faced names to be seen in the crowd were a string of ups and downs: Roger Stone, Madison Cawthorn, Mike Lindell and Dick Morris.
Frustrated, people tried to leave before Trump finished speaking. Others turned their backs on him and spoke of his words. Remember, these attendees were some of his most dedicated and connected helpers and supporters.
A crowd formed at the exit of the stadium while others tried to leave Trump’s announcement speech before he finished…. But security does not allow them. pic.twitter.com/O7C6QJfYgK
– Olivia Rubin (@OliviaRubinABC) November 16, 2022
If Trump were president today and the national media was still trying to absorb him, they would probably praise him after this speech for adopting a “new tone.” But just as it was not true then, it is not true now. People aren’t afraid to talk about Trump’s obvious weaknesses, either because they don’t fear him politically, they fear his politics, or both.
Regardless, the image that emerged from the Mar-a-Lago dais on Tuesday night was a makeshift teleprompter of Trump using soft, low tones as he tries to make a point. For example, instead of going on about how the 2020 election was stolen, Trump talked about the need for paper ballots and counting all ballots on Election Day. It was an afterthoughtGet Hollywood The version of Trump who was backed into a corner and needed to prove to his donors that he would not let them down again. So he ended up making this quick announcement that no one, not even his closest advisers, really wanted.
Another sign that his team isn’t entirely on fire with the idea?
Minutes after Donald Trump announced another run for the White House, Ivanka Trump gave a statement to CNN saying, in part: “I don’t plan to get involved in politics.”
— Paul LeBlanc (@CNNPaul) November 16, 2022
Trump’s campaign was exactly what it looked like: a desperate, weak-willed attempt to get rid of the 2024 GOP primary challengers; possibly blocking the ongoing investigation into the January 6 hacking of classified documents and an attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 Georgia election; and to confirm his wavering support. He is too weak to run; his dwindling political assets are still too valuable to let go.
If Trump understands anything, it’s how to bully the GOP into falling behind him. He did it after Charlottesville, Helsinki, Impeachment 1.0, and Impeachment 2.0. He’s been here before; making bold, unpopular, destabilizing moves in the midst of human chaos is part of his normal process.
By announcing his commitment early, Trump is also daring Republicans to oppose him. Whether anyone chooses to participate is the question. St. Ron DeSantis seems to think he can sit outside the ring, “watch Trump show up,” and, somehow, be miraculously anointed the Republican nominee. Wishful thinking. Because as weak as Trump is right now, he’s certainly not out.