Despite criticism from his own ranks, Donald Trump will seek the office of US president again in 2024. Almost everything speaks against a successful comeback. However, one should never write Trump off too early.
Donald Trump stays true to himself. In all immodesty, he wrote on his social network Truth Social on Tuesday evening: “I hope today will be one of the most important days in the history of our country.” At 9:00 p.m. prime time, he then appeared before cameras in the ballroom of his private Florida club to announce his 2024 presidential campaign. He is stepping in to save the American dream, Trump said. “Our country is being destroyed before your eyes.”
Many of his advisers are said to have asked Trump to delay the announcement, at least until the Dec. 6 runoff for the last remaining Senate seat in Georgia. Because his campaign could also mobilize Democratic voters there to go to the polls again against Trump’s candidate Herschel Walker. If Walker loses, then the People’s Tribune will be held responsible for that defeat. In other states, Trump’s candidates fared poorly in the midterm Senate elections a week ago. This allowed the Democrats to defend their small majority in the small chamber.
The ex-president keeps his mouth shut
Trump didn’t listen to his advisers. He had set a time for his “big announcement” half a year ago, and now he clearly didn’t want to show any weakness. But he appears to have taken one piece of advice to heart: In his speech, Trump largely avoided complaining about his 2020 election defeat or the furore over alleged voter fraud. Instead, he tried to remember the successes of his tenure. He listed low gasoline prices, a tough regime on the Mexican border, the dismantling of the IS caliphate in Syria and Iraq, and diplomatic normalization between Israel and several Arab states.
Trump emphasized that his government was one of prosperity and peace. “The war in Ukraine would not have happened if I had been president.” The USA stood on the threshold of a golden age, but then President Joe Biden ruined everything with his left-wing politics and brought the country to its knees.
Trump explained the disappointing results of the Republicans in the midterms by saying that people have not yet fully felt the negative effects of the current government policies. But the suffering will only increase until 2024. “People will vote very differently.” Under his renewed leadership, he will make the United States “great and glorious” again.
Race against the new light of hope
Trump was expected to announce his presidential campaign after the midterms. For many months, he has repeatedly made it clear at his appearances that returning to the White House is his fondest wish. The current rush, even before all the votes were counted, could have had other reasons. According to the New York Times, Trump apparently hopes that his status as a presidential candidate will give him political protection from possible criminal prosecution. The Justice Department is investigating the attack on the Capitol and the possible misappropriation of classified documents against the former president.
Moreover, Trump seems to want to slow down his perhaps biggest opponent as quickly as possible. In contrast to the GOP’s poor performance in midterm elections, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis enjoyed a stellar re-election bid. While Trump has also received plenty of criticism from the conservative media, DeSantis has been hailed as the future hope and new leader of the Republicans.
The conservative Caucus for Growth on Monday released new polling results from Iowa and New Hampshire, the first stops in the Republican primary for the 2024 presidential race. In both states, DeSantis led with about 50 percent of the vote to Donald Trump’s 37 percent. . DeSantis also led in Florida and Georgia. However, Trump is expected to compete against a large field of candidates in the primary. The anti-Trump vote is therefore likely to be split among several heads. With the help of his loyal followers, he was able to throw one candidate after another out of the race.
No criticism from party leaders
As critical as conservatives may be of Trump at the moment, little has come from GOP leadership. Neither Kevin McCarthy, who is desperate to become speaker of the House of Representatives, nor longtime Senate leader Mitch McConnell have yet distanced themselves. Utah Senator Mitt Romney has long been one of Trump’s harshest Republican critics. He compared the former president to an aging baseball star: “He’s like an aging pitcher who keeps losing games. It is time for him to go because we have a strong bank.”
In fact, there is currently little evidence that Trump can win the election in 2024. He dreams that he can repeat his success as an underdog in 2016. But a lot has happened since then. Under his leadership, Republicans did poorly in the 2018, 2020, and 2022 elections. Especially after the attack on the Capitol on January 6, 2021, Trump is no longer eligible for many moderate Americans. Because he is also so hated among Democrats, he will massively mobilize leftist voters. Republicans risk helping Biden or another Democratic challenger win.
Reactions to Trump’s relatively tame appearance were therefore unflattering. This event was covered by the “New York Post” – a conservative and so far extremely loyal to Trump tabloid just a sarcastic short message on page 26: “A Florida retiree made a surprise announcement Tuesday night that he’s running for president,” it says. Jeb Bush Jr., nephew of former President George W. Bush, tweeted: “What a poor performance by Donald. It’s time for new leaders.” He added the hashtag #SleepyDonnie.
Trump likes to call Biden “Sleepy Joe.” But the president and his White House team don’t seem to be sleeping. There is already said to be a plan called “Project Trump”. On Tuesday, Biden released a video titled “The Difference Between Talking and Delivering.” It shows how Trump always promised to invest in America’s infrastructure, but in the end Biden signed a $1 trillion program to do so. The second video, titled “Trump Abandoned America,” commemorates the attack on the Capitol and Trump’s anti-abortion statements.
The midterm elections showed that high inflation alone is not enough to win over America’s swing voters to the Republicans. However, Trump should not be written off too soon. If Biden fails to get inflation under control and the economy slips into recession, the signs may change. A number of Trump’s candidates suffered defeats in key states in the midterm elections. However, they often failed by just a few percentage points. And Trump vowed on Tuesday: “I’m going to fight like no one has before.”