Trump kicks off new campaign with airing of old grievances

President Trump stuck to old themes and complaints in his highly touted campaign kickoff speech in Orlando, Fla., on Tuesday night. The president railed against the “fake news,” “socialism,” investigations into his administration, the Democrats running to replace him, former President Barack Obama and the Clinton family in the marathon speech, which lasted well over an hour.

Trump framed his re-litigation of the conflicts from the 2016 election and the first half of his presidential term as a defense of his supporters.

“The Democrats don’t care about Russia. They only care about their own political power. They went after my family, my business, my finances, my employees, almost everyone that I’ve ever known or worked with, but they are really going after you,” Trump said pointing at the audience. “That's what it’s all about. ... They tried to erase your vote, erase your legacy of the greatest campaign and the greatest election probably in the history of our country.”

Donald Trump at Florida rally

Trump and his campaign promoted the event as an official launch to his reelection effort. However, as with many of his Democratic rivals who held so-called kickoff events, Trump's rally was only a launch in the cosmetic sense. Trump’s 2020 campaign has been in full swing with a robust staff for some time. In an unusual step, the president formally declared his intention to run for reelection on the day he took office in January 2017. Trump has also since the end of the last election cycle held several freewheeling rallies that are one of his campaign trademarks.

The location of his event on Tuesday night was clearly strategic, since Trump's campaign has singled out Florida as a key state for him in 2020.

While Trump did not debut any new initiatives, he touted the economic performance under his administration and reiterated commitments to expanding the military budget while curbing abortion and illegal immigration. Trump also predicted more time in office would help him make progress towards curing cancer, eliminating AIDS in this country, and laying the “foundation” for American astronauts to land on Mars.

“We are going to keep on winning, winning, winning,” Trump said.

22 PHOTOS
Donald Trump and Melania Trump at the Oscars through the years
See Gallery
Donald Trump and Melania Trump at the Oscars through the years
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 29: Donald Trump and Melania Knauss attend the 2004 Vanity Fair Oscar Party at Mortons on February 29, 2004 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Billy Farrell/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 29: (L-R) Teresa Barrick, Steven Tyler, Melania Knauss and Donald Trump attend the 2004 Vanity Fair Oscar Party (Exclusive Inside Coverage) at Mortons on February 29, 2004 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
Donald Trump during 2004 Vanity Fair Oscar Party - Arrivals at Mortons in Beverly Hills, California, United States. (Photo by Tony Barson Archive/WireImage)
Sharon Osbourne, Donald Trump and Melania Knauss during 12th Annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Oscar Party Co-hosted by In Style - Inside at Pearl in West Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by KMazur/WireImage)
Donald Trump and Melania Knauss during Elton John AIDS Foundation's 12th Annual Oscar party co-hosted by In Style - Arrivals at Pearl in West Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by J. Merritt/FilmMagic)
386900 83: Donald Trump and his girlfriend, model Melania Knauss arrive for the 73rd Annual Academy Awards March 25, 2001 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Weeks/Getty Images)
386900 171: Donald Trump and his girlfriend, model Melania Knauss arrive for the 73rd Annual Academy Awards March 25, 2001 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Weeks/Getty Images)
Donald Trump during The 73rd Annual Academy Awards - Arrivals at Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by SGranitz/WireImage)
Donald Trump & Samuel L. Jackson during The 73rd Annual Academy Awards - Arrivals at Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by SGranitz/WireImage)
(Original Caption) Donald Trump with a friend. (Photo by Frank Trapper/Corbis via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 27: (L-R) Donald Trump, Melania Knauss Trump, Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale attend Vanity Fair Oscar Party at Morton's Restaurant on February 27, 2005 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Patrick McMullan/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 27: Donald Trump and Melania Knauss Trump attend Vanity Fair Oscar Party at Morton's Restaurant on February 27, 2005 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Billy Farrell/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
Real estate mogul and Reality TV star and executive producer ('The Apprentice') Donald J. Trump (R) and new wife model Melania Knauss Trump arrive at the Vanity Fair Academy Awards® party at Mortons restaurant. (Photo by Chris Farina/Corbis via Getty Images)
Donald Trump and Melania Trump during 2005 Vanity Fair Oscar Party - Arrivals at Mortons in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by George Pimentel/WireImage)
Melania Trump and Donald Trump during 13th Annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Oscar Party Co-hosted by Chopard - Arrivals at Pacific Design Center in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by Jean-Paul Aussenard/WireImage)
Melania Trump and Donald Trump during 13th Annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Oscar Party Co-hosted by Chopard - Inside at Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by KMazur/WireImage)
Tim Allen, Jane Hajduk, Melania Trump, and Donald Trump (Photo by KMazur/WireImage)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 27: Donald Trump and Melania Trump arrive at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party 2011, February 27, 2011 at the Sunset Tower Hotel in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/FilmMagic)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 27: Donald Trump and Melania Trump arrive at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party 2011, February 27, 2011 at the Sunset Tower Hotel in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/FilmMagic)
Portrait of married couple Donald and Melania Trump as they pose together on the red carpet at the Kodak Theater during the 83rd Academy Awards, Hollywood, California, February 27, 2011. (Photo by Bob Riha, Jr./Getty Images)
Donald Trump and wife Melania at the 83rd Academy Awards, held at the Kodak Theater in Hollywood. (Photo by Frank Trapper/Corbis via Getty Images)
(L-R) Actress Helena Bonham Carter, Donald Trump and wife Melania Trump arrive at the 83rd Annual Academy Awards held at the Kodak Theatre on February 27, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Read Full Story