Former President Donald Trump said he may not participate in the GOP primary debates. Trump shared the comments with John Catsimatidis, host of the “Cats & Cosby Show” on WABC 770, during a Wednesday interview.
Trump suggests he won’t participate in 2024 GOP debates: ‘What’s the purpose of doing it?’ https://t.co/bwl8sP2r1O pic.twitter.com/h4sJftiqzb
— New York Post (@nypost) April 27, 2023
“I’m leading by 40 points. A lot of people say, ‘Why would you do a debate when you have people at two and three and fifteen and fourteen [percent]?’” Trump said.
“People don’t debate when they have these massive leads. They say, ‘Why would we debate?’ I would have a hostile group of anchors — a hostile network — asking questions. Why would I do that?” he added.
“Nobody got my approval.” Crybaby Trump says he won’t participate in the Republican debates. Good, the less we see of him on television, the better. pic.twitter.com/BR4CHmKXB5
— Mike Sington (@MikeSington) April 25, 2023
Trump also posted about the issue on his Truth Social account.
“I see that everybody is talking about the Republican Debates, but nobody got my approval, or the approval of the Trump Campaign, before announcing them,” he wrote.
“When you’re leading by seemingly insurmountable numbers, and you have hostile Networks with angry, TRUMP & MAGA hating anchors asking the ‘questions,’ why subject yourself to being libeled and abused? Also, the Second Debate is being held at the Reagan Library, the Chairman of which is, amazingly, Fred Ryan, Publisher of The Liberal Washington Post. NO!” he added.
Trump Won't Participate in Republican Primary Debates? https://t.co/BtXPI5ZfUc
— Sheryl Post (@ProudDoggieMom) April 25, 2023
“It is an objectively weird flex given the 2016 primary debates are where Trump went from media curiosity to Republican nominee, despite zero experience serving in government — a trait he turned from weakness to strength,” Mediaite reported.
“There was one primary debate in which Trump opted not to participate in protest, which led some in the chattering class to speculate that was the beginning of the end. It was not,” it noted.
The first GOP presidential debate is set for August, giving only a small window for additional candidates to make an announcement and join. For Trump, there may be no reason to join at all with his large lead in polls, allowing other candidates to fight to become his top opponent.
The latest comments show Trump has no plans to change course to court the GOP but instead continues to speak directly to the American people in his comeback bid for the White House.