As expected, Donald Trump announced his third consecutive run for president Tuesday night, from his Florida home at Mar-a-Lago, where he unlawfully housed thousands of items taken from the White House, including hundreds of documents with classified and top secret markings.
Political experts, historians, and journalists have greatly criticized – and mocked – his speech and his attempt to re-enter the Oval Office, an attempt he reportedly is making to also evade criminal prosecution for a wide swatch of possible offenses.
"Imagine losing the popular vote in two presidential elections, being impeached twice, inciting an insurrection, facing multiple criminal investigations, leading your party to historic midterm election losses, and deciding to run for president again as a ploy to avoid indictment," said CNN's Keith Boykin.
Indeed, multiple reports state Trump has told advisors he is running for president in the hope it will block the Dept. of Justice from indicting him.
Trump is under at least four major criminal investigations, not to mention several criminal and civil lawsuits. In September, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) published "President Trump’s staggering record of uncharged crimes." It includes, by category and even statute, what they say are credible accusations of "at least 56 criminal offenses," allegedly committed only during his run for office or time in office.
Trump's 66-minute speech was a rambling mixture of past rally remarks, grievances, and off-the-cuff comments. It was characterized as "straight from the fascist playbook," by David Rothkopf, an international risk expert, journalist, podcaster, and frequent MSNBC guest.
"It is nationalist, racist, fear-mongering founded in lies & outrageous misstatements about his ability to address any of the problems he describes (many of which are total fabrications.) This is authoritarianism on the march," Rothkopf warned.
Trump's speech was filled with lies, or, as CNN's fact-checker Daniel Dale generously tweeted, "Trump has not gotten more accurate."
Once during a Trump press conference Huffpost's White House correspondent, S.V. Dáte, asked the then-president if he regretted "all the lying that you’ve done to the American people?”
Tuesday night Dáte tweeted, "So, so, so, so, SO much lying."
Conway called Trump "low energy" twice, mockingly noting that Trump "was so low-energy, it makes me wonder whether MAGA really means Make America Groggy Again."
Echoing the "low energy" observations, Rothkopf added, "Trump is taking a new approach. He wants to bore America into white supremacist Christo-fascist authoritarianism."
The Atlantic's Tom Nichols, an academic specialist on international affairs including Russia and nuclear weapons, and a retired professor at the U.S. Naval War College, called Trump's speech "a rehashing of the American carnage speech," referring to his 2017 Inaugural Address.
But perhaps Trump's speech was best summed up by the former president himself when he lamented, "I'm a victim. I will tell you. I'm a victim."