Donald Trump officially entered the presidential fray Tuesday, making the real estate executive and television personality the 12th Republican to do so.
#DonaldTrump i am officially running for President of the United States and we are going to make our country great again
— James Beattie (@JamesGBeattie) June 16, 2015
Trump made the declaration at Trump Tower in Manhattan, giving what is probably the most unfiltered presidential announcement speech in recent memory, bemoaning the policies of the Obama administration and the attitudes of Republican politicians alike while at the same time touting his own accomplishments and negotiating skills.
“Our country is in serious trouble. We don’t have victories anymore. We used to have victories, but we don’t have them. When was the last time anybody saw us beating, let’s say China in a trade deal?” Trump said. “I beat China all the time. All the time.”
The man sometimes affectionately referred to as “The Donald” did not shy away from touting his success and his wealth throughout the 45 minute speech.
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“I’m really proud of my success, I really am. I’ve employed tens of thousands of people over my lifetime. That means medical, that means education, that means everything. So a large accounting firm and my accountants have been working for months — because it’s big and complex — and they’ve put together a statement.”
The paper which he held in his hand revealed a net worth of about $9 billion. Trump also pledged to not use donors during the campaign. “I’m not using donors. I don’t care. I’m really rich,” he said.
While calling himself a free trader, Trump came out against Trade Promotion Authority (TPA). “The people negotiating it have no clue,” he asserted.
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Trump pledged to “repeal and replace the big lie Obamacare,” while also promising to “build a great, great wall on our southern border,” making “Mexico pay for that wall.” The host of The Apprentice also said: “Nobody would be tougher on ISIS than Donald Trump. Nobody.”
He did not hesitate to slam former Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida, who announced his candidacy Monday. “Bush is totally favor of Common Core, is weak on immigration, how the hell can you vote for this guy?” Trump asked the crowd, who occasionally chanted “We Want Trump!”
Trump echoed some of the themes he told Western Journalism in February:
It’s a very simple pitch: We want to make America great again. We are losing this country. We are making so many bad decisions, whether it’s ISIS and the way we go about it. Whether it’s Obamacare which is a disaster. Whether it’s social security and other things that are going down the tubes because of what’s going on.
Whether it’s our debt, which is at $18 trillion and it’s going to be 24 trillion very quickly and that’s a very important number because that’s a number you’re not going to come back from.
There are so many problems with this country – we have such great potential. The way we negotiate with China is a joke. The potential is there, but the country is in trouble. We have no leadership.
Democratic National Committee press secretary Holly Shulman sarcastically acknowledged Trump’s entrance into the race.
“Today, Donald Trump became the second major Republican candidate to announce for president in two days,” Shulman said. “He adds some much-needed seriousness that has previously been lacking from the GOP field, and we look forward hearing more about his ideas for the nation.”
Trump flirted with running for president in years past, but it became clear he was serious after he announced a presidential exploratory committee in March. The newly minted candidate is scheduled to fly to Iowa for a rally, then to New Hampshire Wednesday, according to his campaign website.
According to TMZ, Trump’s show The Apprentice will be going black during his presidential bid.
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