Donald Trump defended comments he made last week where he said he wanted to be a dictator if re-elected but only on “Day One” in office.
Trump began by complaining that Peter Baker of The New York Times wrote an article referencing his comments. “[Peter] Baker today in the New York Times said that I want to be a dictator,” the former president said Saturday night at the New York Young Republican Club’s 111th Annual Gala. “I didn’t say that. I said I want to be a dictator for one day. You know why I wanted to be a dictator? Because I want a wall, and I want to drill, drill, drill.”
Trump: You know why I wanted to be dictator? I want a wall and drill, drill, drill..
Crowd and Trump: build the wall
Trump: We did pic.twitter.com/6ugNSwAFnw
— Acyn (@Acyn) December 10, 2023
Trump made the original comments on his dreams of dictatorship during an interview last week with Fox News’ Sean Hannity after the anchor asked if Trump had plans of revenge against his enemies.
“You are promising America tonight, you would never abuse this power as retribution against anybody?” Hannity asked.
“Except for Day One,” Trump said.
Trump then addressed the interview audience. “This guy, he says, ‘You’re not going to be a dictator, are you?’” Trump said, referring to Hannity. “I said, ‘No, no, no — other than Day One.’ We’re closing the border. And we’re drilling, drilling, drilling. After that, I’m not a dictator.”
During his Saturday night speech that ran nearly an hour and a half, Trump told the crowd of wealthy Republicans, “We want to liberate America because we’re in a country that’s in a lot of pain right now, a lot of hurt. This campaign is on a righteous crusade to rescue our nation from a very corrupt political class.”
The event’s guest list was a MAGA who’s who, including former Trump advisor Steve Bannon, Trump’s attorney Alina Habba, the disgraced Rudy Giuliani, and far-right members of Congress Reps. Paul Gosar, Mike Collins and Cory Mills.
“On Day One, I will break up the Biden administration’s illegal censorship machine and any official who has violated Americans constitutional rights will be held very, very accountable,” Trump said in his Saturday night speech.
Trump may not be waiting until “Day One” of his possible second term to enact dictatorial policies. A Rolling Stone investigation uncovered efforts by Trump and his team to erode democracy by seeding the 2024 election with “garbage” voter data and replacing a longstanding database used to verify voter registration data with a new software, EagleAI, that experts say is “utterly unreliable.”
Before Trump took the stage, the president of the New York Young Republican Club, Gavin Wax, promised vengence if Trump returns to the White House.
“Since I know the deep state is listening tonight, once President Trump is back in office, we won’t be playing nice anymore,” Wax said, according to Politico.
“It will be a time for retribution. All those responsible for destroying our once-great country will be held to account after baseless years of investigations and government lies and media lies against this man,” Wax continued. “Now it is time to turn the tables on these actual crooks and lock them up for a change.”
When Trump spoke, he praised Wax’s comments, saying, “Gavin, that was an excellent speech. That was an excellent speech, wow.”
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