Trump calls the Republican debate ‘unwatchable’ as he speaks to big rally crowd down the road in Florida – and rips into ‘stupid’ trial on the day daughter Ivanka testified
Former President Donald Trump skipped the third Republican presidential debate on Wednesday evening, declaring it “unwatchable” for his own rally audience and accusing his party of pushing “weak and ineffective RINOS.”
Trump mentioned only two of his Republican rivals, Ron DeSantis and Nikki Haley, but did not bring them up until deep into his remarks.
“Do you think we did the right thing not to participate?” he asked a crowd of supporters.
‘Listen, I’m standing in front of tens of thousands of people now and it’s on television. That is much more difficult than a debate,” he said.
Still dominating his rivals in the primaries, the former president opted not to join the blowout in Miami, where Vivek Ramaswamy compared DeSantis to “Cheney in three-inch heels” and Haley pointed to a series of Republican Party electoral losses in the Trump era.
As in previous events, his rivals spent much of their event chasing each other instead of the dominant front runner – even when asked about him directly.
Former President Donald Trump mocked his Republican rivals as they took part in a presidential debate in Miami. Instead, he spoke to supporters at an outdoor rally
Trump called Haley “bird-brained” and DeSantis “Rhonda Sanctimonious,” and trumpeted a poll showing him leading Joe Biden in swing states (leaving out the one battleground in the New York Times poll where Biden led him — Wisconsin —).
“Stop wasting time and resources trying to push the weak and ineffective RINOS,” Trump complained as his rivals fought among themselves.
Trump spoke before a few thousand supporters at Ted Hendricks Stadium, who cheered as he railed against “radical left Democratic communists” and repeated his claims of a “stolen” election.
He mentioned his four criminal charges that have resulted in 91 charges.
‘They charged me, can you believe that? My father and mother are looking down, why is that?’ he said.
“Even that stupid trial going on in New York,” Trump said, on a day when daughter Ivanka Trump took the stand in his $250 million fraud trial.
Trump, who regularly talks about 2020, was equally nostalgic about his stunning 2016 victory, which took place on November 8 of that year.
He saved his angriest rhetoric for President Biden and the Democrats.
Trump again vowed to overhaul the Justice Department and use executive power to go after his rivals.
“I will completely destroy the Deep State,” he vowed. “We will start exposing every last crime committed by corrupt Joe Biden, because now that he has indicted me, we get to look at him,” he said, on a day when House Republicans Hunter Biden and James Subpoena Biden.
Trump has repeatedly portrayed the debates as a B-list affair — though rivals Ron DeSantis and Nikki Haley wanted to level a few blames on him and each other.
Also on stage are entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, Senator Tim Scott and Chris Christie.
They were the candidates who met the donor and election criteria to participate in the third debate and who signed the loyalty pledge required to debate.
Trump leads DeSantis at 44 percent in CNN’s latest national poll, while Haley is at 10 percent.
Trump’s son Don Jr. helped warm up the crowd on a day his sister Ivanka testified at Trump’s fraud trial in New York.
Trump denounced “vicious opponents” and vowed to go after President Biden if elected. “Now that he has indicted me, we can look at him,” he said
Trump gathered with his supporters as his rivals debated
Comedian Roseanne Barr said there are ‘prisoners in our country whose minds have been stolen by this terrible regime’
Kimberly Guilfoyle, Donald Trump Jr.’s fiancée, gave a warm-up
Donald Trump Jr. blasted ‘anti-Semites calling for genocide at some of the nation’s top universities’
Proud Boy leader Enrique Tarrio was convicted of seditious conspiracy in May 2023, although he was not present at the Capitol riot