New York City – December 10, 2023
Former President Donald Trump took center stage at the New York Young Republican Club gala on December 9, 2023, dismissing warnings that his potential victory in the 2024 election would pose a threat to democracy. Characterizing such concerns as a “hoax” and “Democrat misinformation,” Trump declared that President Joe Biden is the actual threat to democracy.
Addressing the audience, Trump ridiculed the narrative, stating, “Can you believe it? This is their new line, you know. Here we go again — ‘Russia, Russia, Russia,’ ‘Mueller, Mueller, Mueller,’ ‘Ukraine, Ukraine, Ukraine.’ One hoax after another. But no, I’m not a threat. I will save democracy. The threat is Crooked Joe Biden. And that’s what it is, it’s a hoax. We call it now the threat-to-democracy hoax because that’s what it is.”
In a speech that touched on various topics, Trump responded to recent criticism regarding his statement that he wouldn’t be a dictator if re-elected, except for the first day, clarifying, “I said I want to be a dictator for one day. And you know why I want to be a dictator? Because I want a wall … and I want to drill, drill, drill.”
Trump dismissed Democrats’ accusations about threats to democracy as a “desperate and shameless attempt to distract from the monstrous abuses of power the left is committing before your very eyes.” He highlighted over a dozen state-level petitions seeking to remove him from the 2024 ballot, citing a clause in the Constitution’s 14th Amendment related to “insurrection or rebellion.”
The former president, who narrowly leads Biden in a hypothetical rematch according to a recent poll, criticized Biden and Democrats for asserting that his re-election could undermine American democracy. Trump countered by stating, “The greatest threat Trump poses is to the democracy.” He also referenced his campaign’s policy proposals, which aim to expand presidential authority, as well as his talk of “retribution” against political enemies.
Recent warnings from figures like former Rep. Liz Cheney, who cautioned against “sleepwalking into a dictatorship,” have drawn significant attention. Trump responded to such concerns on Fox’s Sean Hannity, reiterating that he wouldn’t be a dictator “except for Day 1” to address specific issues.
Criticism of Trump’s remarks has come from within the Republican Party itself, with former Gov. Chris Christie characterizing him as “an angry, bitter man.” Former Vice President Al Gore, a Democrat, expressed concern about Trump’s “dictator” remarks, questioning what it would take for people to believe him.
In his concluding remarks, Trump labeled Democrats as “sick people” who “don’t care about our country.” He accused them of using the “threat-to-democracy hoax” to divert attention from economic challenges, including historic inflation and the possibility of a fragile economy leading to a depression. The former president’s statements add fuel to the ongoing political discourse surrounding the potential implications of his return to the presidency in 2024.