PALM BEACH, Fla. (NewsNation) — Former President Donald Trump is seeking to reclaim the political stage with a “big” announcement he first teased before the midterm elections. Experts believe he’ll announce his third campaign for the White House on Tuesday.
Trump is looking to move on from disappointing midterm defeats and defy history amid signs that his grip on the Republican Party may be waning.
The former president had hoped to use the GOP’s expected gains in last week’s elections as a springboard to win his party’s nomination by locking in early support and keeping potential challengers at bay. Instead, Trump now finds himself being blamed for backing a series of losing candidates in last week’s midterm elections.
“Hopefully, tomorrow will turn out to be one of the most important days in the history of our Country!” Trump wrote on his social media network on Monday. An announcement was expected at 9 p.m. EST from his club in Palm Beach.
During an interview with NewsNation on Election Day, Trump reiterated the false claims that the 2020 election was stolen and teased a Nov. 15 announcement that he said will make people “very happy” and “very impressed.”
“I would do very similar things and I would do them rather quickly,” Trump said. “You have you close up our border. You have to get rid of crime. I would be a big crime fighter. We were and we were very successful and I’d do it even more so.”
Trump’s announcement comes as he’s facing a series of intensifying criminal investigations, including a Justice Department probe into the hundreds of documents with classified markings that were discovered in boxes and drawers at his Mar-a-Lago estate.
Aides and allies had urged Trump to wait until after the midterms were over — and then until after a Dec. 6 Senate runoff election in Georgia — to announce his plans. But Trump, eager to return to the spotlight, is also hoping to stave off a long list of potential challengers, including Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who cruised to reelection last week and is now being urged by many in his party to run for president a well.
“He can’t stand not being center of attention; that’s just a fact. I don’t think he wants anybody else in there,” Stephanie Grisham, former White House press secretary and communications director under the Trump administration, said on NewsNation Live. “He had his little ‘Ron De-Sanctimonious’ nickname the other night — I think he’s trying to keep people out. I also think that he’s trying to be able to turn his legal woes political — he’s gonna say everything’s political once he’s a nominee.”
However, Trump has received the brunt of criticism for elevating candidates in states like Pennsylvania and Arizona who were unappealing to general election voters because they embraced his lies about 2020 election or held hard-line views on issues like abortion that were out of step with the mainstream.
The fallout of Trump-endorsed candidates has left many experts believing the MAGA era is a thing of the past.
“A lot of Republicans think it is a mistake because they want to win that seat in Georgia that’s going to a runoff and and these Republican critics of Trump blame the former president for losing the Senate in Georgia two years ago,” The Hill editor-in-chief, Bob Cusack, said while speaking on NewsNation’s “Rush Hour” on Tuesday.
Cusack also spoke on Trump’s star power and whether the former president will still have the same draw at the polls he once did.
While Cusack says it’s impossible to know for sure at this moment, he maintains that the more candidates the GOP puts up, the better chance Trump’s got.
“If it is a crowded field, again, that helps Trump — like it did in 2016. He won’t need 50% of the vote. He could just skate by with 35% because the vote will be diluted over so many candidates. And I expect at least a handful of candidates if not double digits to get in. But they’re not going to be deterred by president Trump getting it, Cusack said.