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Donald Trump brands US a ‘third-world hellhole’ run by ‘perverts’ and ‘thugs’

Former president claimed American dream ‘dead’ under Joe Biden during Turning Point Action Conference

Graeme Massie,Alex Woodward
Sunday 16 July 2023 02:45 BST
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Donald Trump says being indicted is 'great badge of honour and courage'

Donald Trump branded the US a “third-world hellhole” run by “perverts” and “thugs” in his latest 2024 campaign speech, a rambling, nearly two-hour long set of remarks to close out a right-wing conference in Florida.

The one-term president told the Turning Point Action Conference on 15 July that the American dream was “dead” under Joe Biden as he relentlessly mocked his successor and painted a bleak picture of a nation in decline.

“The election will decide whether your generation will inherit a fascist country or a free country, “ Mr Trump told the right-wing activist conference.

“Millions of illegal aliens have stormed across our borders, it is an invasion, like a military invasion. Our rights and liberties are being torn to shreds,” he said. “Your country is being turned into a third-world hellhole, run by censors, perverts criminals and thugs.”

His remarks come as a grand jury in Georgia considers whether to recommend charges against him for his efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election in that state, separate from the US Department of Justice special counsel probe into a pressure campaign among Trump allies to subvert the outcome to install the now-former president for a second term.

In his remarks, the former president lambasted the multiple investigations against him – including federal charges alleging that he illegally withheld classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago property – as “bull****.”

He once again falsely stated that the 2020 election was “rigged” against him and said that the investigations against him are an attempt to “rig” next year’s election as he seeks another term in the White House.

“Every time the radical left Democrats indict me, I consider it to be a great badge of honour and courage,” he said. “I am doing it for you. I am being indicted for you.”

Former US President Donald Trump arrives on stage to speak at the Turning Point Action conference as he continues his 2024 presidential campaign on July 15, 2023 in West Palm Beach, Florida.

He turned his direction inward, describing the US under an “inside” threat from unseen “sick, sinister and evil forces” under President Joe Biden.

“If you have the right leadership China is not a problem, if you have the right leadership Russia would not be a problem,” he said. “They would not have done what they did, believe me, they would never have done it.”

He told his supporters that their “task” and “calling” is to “liberate America from these communists, racists, Marxists, globalists and warmongers who want to plunder the future of our country.”

He threatened to “reclaim colleges” and “choke off the money” to universities that he claims are leading a “Marxist assault” on “Western civilization itself.” He also pledged to revive an even wider ban on people from majority Muslim countries from entering the US, along with mass deportations of people living in the country and ending birthright citizenship for the children of people who are in the US without legal permission.

The former president also targeted trans people and transition healthcare for trans youth, a familiar target across the stage among pundits and lawmakers who addressed the conference on Saturday.

Right-wing activist Charlie Kirk and attorney Harmeet Dhillon, who unsuccessfully ran for chair of the Republican National Committee, opened the speaking lineup with a series of inflammatory claims about trans people and their families.

Ms Dhillon claimed that schools are “inflicting powerful psychological indoctrination on vulnerable children” and compared doctors who provide gender-affirming healthcare to Nazis.

She called transition healthcare the “Mengele-like experimentation on America’s children”.

Former Fox News personality Megyn Kelly said she no longer has empathy for people experiencing gender dysphoria. “There should be a healthy measure of ridicule,” she told Kirk during a lengthy discussion about trans people and the erasure of trans rights, which Kirk said is a “winner politically for Republicans.”

“These people are freaks. They’re perverts, by the way, if they go into a women’s locker room,” Kirk said.

Asked how she feels about being labeled transphobic, Kelly said: “OK, whatever, honestly I’ve been called worse … Let them call you whatever you want. Who gives a damn.”

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