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Trump unveils list of fake grievances at Florida rally: 'We're not eating bacon anymore' | US Elections 2024

 


Donald Trump returned to the campaign trail in Florida on Tuesday night, hurling insults at Joe Biden and airing a litany of familiar grievances but refusing to name a running mate for November's general election.

The former president and presumptive Republican nominee addressed a crowd of several hundred supporters at his golf club in Doral, a western suburb of Miami, keeping them waiting in 90-degree heat for a free-form monologue that began more than an hour later than scheduled.

There was speculation he might use his first public appearance since last month's debate with the president to announce Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, who was in attendance, as his vice presidential pick six days before the Republican National Convention (RNC) in Milwaukee.

Instead, Trump delivered a rambling 75-minute speech that included a succession of attacks on Biden and his faltering debate performance, raising questions among Democrats about whether the 81-year-old president was robust enough for a second term.

He took advantage of the turbulence that followed the debate, which prompted some leading Democrats to call for Biden's resignation and the nomination of Kamala Harris.

The radical left Democratic Party is divided into chaos and experiencing full-scale collapse, all because it cannot decide which of its candidates is more unfit to be president, the sleepy, twisted Joe Biden or the laughing Kamala, he said, repeating previous derogatory terms for both.

For all the Democrats' panic this week, the truth is that it doesn't matter who they nominate, because we're going to beat any one of them in a landslide.

Trump kept a lower profile than usual in the days after the debate, a strategy described by one aide as designed to allow Democrats to tear each other apart after Biden's dismal debate performance.

His remarks Tuesday were marked by the addition of the vice president's name to numerous attacks on Biden's policies, and by mentions of Rubio and Byron Donalds, a Republican congressman from Florida who is also reportedly on Trump's short list for vice president.

Otherwise, it was a standard Trump campaign speech, filled with evidence-free claims that his 2020 election defeat was fraudulent; baseless accusations that foreign countries were sending most of their prisoners to the United States; and a laughable claim that a rally of supporters numbering in the hundreds was actually a crowd of 45,000.

He also touched on surrealism. Biden, he insisted, quadrupled the price of bacon.

We don't eat bacon anymore, Trump said.

He said electric cars had deceived the American public, as drivers had to stop for three hours to recharge their vehicles for every 45 minutes of driving. And, echoing one of the more bizarre exchanges with Biden over who was the better golfer, he challenged his White House successor to 18 holes at Doral while conceding 10 shots.

It will be one of the most-watched sporting events in history, perhaps bigger than the Ryder Cup or even the Masters, Trump said, pledging $1 million to a charity of Biden's choice if he loses.

Back in politics, Trump lambasted Democrats for pushing for tax hikes, criticized Biden for the chaotic 2021 withdrawal of the U.S. military from Afghanistan and promised to build an Iron Dome-style missile defense system for the United States if elected in November.

Perhaps exhausted by the humidity that sapped their energy, the crowd seemed mostly quiet, including some yawning in the stands behind him as Trump neared the end with slow music and others tapping disinterestedly on their phones.

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His campaign had floated the possibility that Trump would announce a vice presidential pick on Tuesday, but in the end his only reference to that message was to suggest that Rubio might or might not still be in the Senate to vote to let Nevada waitresses keep their tips untaxed.

Ohio Sen. J.D. Vance or North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum were not mentioned, with other Republicans on the shortlist. Trump will hold another rally Saturday in Pennsylvania, near the Ohio border, and Vance is expected to be one of the speakers.

Earlier Tuesday, Democrats, during a Biden campaign call with first lady Jill Biden and previewing Trump's rally at Doral, mocked him for his low-key approach since the debate.

I hope he didn't wear himself out from all the golf he's been playing, Texas Congresswoman Veronica Escobar said.

Speaking of staying off the campaign trail, Trump has been hiding a lot lately, not only from voters and the press, but also from Project 2025.

Donald Trump tried to pretend he had nothing to do with Project 2025, when it was written for him by the people who know him best. And yesterday, his campaign preview of the RNC platform was every bit as deranged and extreme as Trump himself. They left out some of the most unpopular details that we know they support.

As usual, they are trying to hide the ball from the American public.

In his speech Tuesday, Trump avoided mentioning Project 2025 or his abortion policy.

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