CNN town hall reintroduced Trump to American politics 2023

Wednesday showed Americans Trump’s true self.

Many people saw the former president and Republican front-runner for the first time in a 70-minute CNN town-hall interview.

It revived American politics for Trump. His answers to moderator Kaitlan Collins and New Hampshire citizens were pre-tested at campaign rallies, on Truth Social, and in supportive interviews.

They lied. He falsely claimed that the 2020 election was “rigged” and finished building a wall between the U.S. and Mexico.

He “inclined to pardon many” Jan. 6 insurrectionists.

He defiantly requested that Georgia officials invalidate the 2020 election outcome.

“Yeah, I called questioning the election,” Trump said of a Fulton County criminal case. “I said, ‘You owe me votes because the election was rigged.’”

This is the Trump who has led the GOP presidential primary while being indicted for allegedly covering up hush money payments to a porn star, found liable for sexual abuse and defamation of writer E. Jean Carroll, and investigated for the Jan. 6 insurrection and taking classified documents from the White House.

Trump criticized Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, wondering whether he should avoid a battle to safeguard his future goals. DeSantis is poised to run despite the Trump team’s efforts to discourage him.

Trump supporters boasted later.

“Full-spectrum domination,” Trump 2016 campaign CEO Steve Bannon texted.

A top Trump campaign official suggested furious political opponents were a sign of success.

According to the adviser, a good day is when the left melts.

At a town hall in New Hampshire, where independent voters are a key constituency, Trump refused to choose sides in Russia’s war in Ukraine, dodged questions about federal abortion restrictions, and called Collins “a nasty person” in one heated exchange.

He faced condemnation from all sides.

“After 76 years, Trump still doesn’t know where he stands on important conservative issues like supporting life and the 2nd amendment,” said Erin Perrine, spokesman for the pro-DeSantis super PAC Never Back Down.

“Trump didn’t hurt himself with his core base,” said a Republican consultant who watched the town hall. “He had them.”

Trump’s boldness, including criticizing Carroll and Collins, was “awful if the goal is to get back [independent] women,” the strategist added.

President Joe Biden’s advisers seized on Trump’s election-denial language, his suggestion that Republicans should let the nation collapse if Biden won’t agree to spending cutbacks in return for a debt-limit extension, and his approbation of the Supreme Court’s overturning abortion rights. They also noticed when he refused to recognize the 2024 election results.

“Weeks of damning content in one hour,” a Biden advisor remarked. “Quite efficient.”

Trump shed light on most hot-button subjects, while he skirted several. He declined to reinstate his family-separation policy to prevent unauthorized immigration. He hinted at a return.

“Save our country,” he urged. “When you tell a family we’ll break you up, they don’t come.”

Trump blamed Biden for ending Title 42 expulsion of immigrants after the COVID-19 outbreak ended. Biden is sending federal soldiers to guard the border in preparation of an inflow of migrants when limits are relaxed this week, like Trump did.

Biden called Russian President Vladimir Putin a “war criminal” for the year-old assault of Ukraine, while Trump did not. On his first day in office, he vowed to stop the conflict but didn’t specify how or whose side.

He wanted everyone to live. “If I’m president, I’ll end that war in 24 hours.”

Experts think a quick deal would suit Putin and Russia.

Over the last few months, Trump campaign observers saw few shocks. His pals say he looked polished Wednesday night.

Senior Trump aide Jason Miller called his performance Wednesday night “fantastic” after six months of voter interaction.

Miller texted, “CNN viewers haven’t seen him talk about his policy views on saving America in quite a while.”

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