A day after being suspended from Facebook for a total of two years, former President Donald Trump returned to the political arena Saturday night, furthering election lies and returning to a cynical and dark view of America.
“The 2020 presidential election, that election, the 2020 presidential election, was by far the most corrupt election in the history of our country,” Trump baselessly claimed in a speech before the North Carolina Republican Party, continuing his false grievance about an election he lost.
He said Democrats “used COVID” and “used mail-in ballots to steal an election.” He called it a “third-world election, like we’ve never seen before.” He derided it as the “crime of the century” and claimed that the “country is being destroyed, perhaps by people who have no right to destroy it.”
And then, as he continued to try and undermine the democratic process with lies about an election that his former top cybersecurity official called the “most secure” in history, he did what he often does with a vulnerability — he
“I’m not the one trying to undermine democracy,” Trump said, “I am the one who’s trying to save it, please remember that.”
That received his biggest applause of the night.
If there’s one thing Trump has never been able to deal with is losing. He has been able to spin his way out of bringing companies into bankruptcies and bad tabloid headlines about failed marriages — and these continued lies about the election are what he sees as his off ramp.
Get ready to hear more about it. This speech kicks off what’s likely to be a spree of summer campaigning. It was Trump’s first public address since his speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference in February.
Relitigating the election with baseless allegations comes as no surprise. It’s been a focus of Trump’s since leaving office. That was evident in an NPR analysis of nearly two months of his statements.
Trump also reverted to a dark vision of America and Democratic rule.
“As we gather tonight, our country is being destroyed before our very own eyes,” the former president said in a speech before the North Carolina Republican Party Convention. “Crime is exploding. Police departments are being ripped apart and defunded. Can you believe that?”