Former President Donald J. Trump is a man who speaks his mind.
Case in point, Trump went on his Truth Social platform Tuesday morning to offer his opinion on the GOP’s plans for its presidential primary debates. And judging by his statement, the 45th president is less than pleased with the developments.
In February, it was announced that the first debate would be held in August in Milwaukee. Early this month, Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel revealed on “Fox & Friends” that Fox News would moderate the event.
On Thursday, McDaniel announced the second GOP primary debate would be held at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California.
The second Republican primary debate will take place at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California! pic.twitter.com/R5JfkZtzHY
— GOP (@GOP) April 21, 2023
The party is “entertaining pitches from an array of networks that are interested in airing the debates,” Politico reported.
But if you were excited to see Trump return to the stage at the Reagan Library, where he debated other Republican presidential hopefuls in 2015, you may be disappointed.
“I see that everybody is talking about the Republican Debates, but nobody got my approval, or the approval of the Trump Campaign, before announcing them,” Trump’s post began.
“When you’re leading by seemingly insurmountable numbers, and you have hostile Networks with angry, TRUMP & MAGA hating anchors asking the ‘questions,’ why subject yourself to being libeled and abused?” he said. “Also, the Second Debate is being held at the Reagan Library, the Chairman of which is, amazingly, Fred Ryan, Publisher of The Washington Post.”
Ryan served in the Reagan White House for seven years and was Reagan’s chief of staff after he left office.
Clearly, Trump believes he should have a say in the scheduling of the debates, considering the polls have him leading current and presumptive Republican contenders by a wide margin. But does his position as the GOP frontrunner entitle him to dictate the party’s events?
It was also made abundantly clear the former president has felt the effects of his name being dragged through the mud by politicians, the establishment media, social media platforms, etc., since he descended the escalator at Trump Tower in June 2015, and to be fair, anyone who has faced that type of scrutiny for years would feel the negative effects.
A person can only take so much, and there comes a point when avoiding a situation that leads to more abuse is healthy. However, this is an already contentious election cycle we are approaching, and whether or not Trump stands on a stage for an hour or two will not take the target off his back.
So is this a true testament to Trump’s feeling the weight of the hateful speech and numerous lies spread about him? Or is this merely a high-handed power play by a man who relishes being in control?
Is Donald J. Trump attending the debates?
Based on the last sentence in his post, the answer seems clear: “NO!”
Clearly, a lot can happen — especially in the world of politics — between now and August. (In one day, a top anchor at Fox News and a longtime host and headache at CNN were removed from their positions.)
To further complicate this situation, McDaniel said the first debate would consist of participants pledging to support the eventual Republican Party nominee, according to The New York Times. As of April 12, Trump had “refused to say whether he would support a nominee other than himself,” the outlet noted.
Does this pledge play into Trump’s Tuesday announcement?
Will Donald Trump debate his Republican contenders? Only time will truly tell.
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