‘Florida man makes announcement’: NY Post trolls Trump

Donald Trump to run again for president

Donald Trump’s fall from favour with the Murdoch empire has reached epic new levels with his announcement he will run again for the US presidency.

Mr Trump made his much anticipated “big announcement” to hundreds of cheering fans in the ballroom at his Mar-a-Lago estate on Wednesday (Australian time).

The adoring crowd might have been happy, but the Murdoch-owned New York Post was less jubilant.

“Florida man makes announcement,” it wrote in a banner headline at the bottom of its front page. And it followed it up with a few paragraphs in a single-column article on page 26 – headlined “Been there, Don that”.

“With just 720 days to go before the next election, a Florida retiree made the surprise announcement that he was running for president,” the article read.

“Avid golfer Donald J. Trump kicked things off at Mar-a-Lago, his resort and classified-documents library.”

“Trump, famous for gold-plated lobbies and for firing people on reality television, will be 78 in 2024.”

Thursday’s print efforts followed some earlier trolling of the former US president by the New York tabloid.

“Trumpty Dumpty” was its front-page headline one day last week, as it responded to the Republicans’ unexpectedly meagre gains in the US midterm elections. It had the sub-head: “Don (who couldn’t build a wall) had a great fall – can all the GOP’s men put the party together again?”

Another part of the Murdoch empire, The Wall Street Journal was more sober but just as critical. It editorialised that Mr Trump is the Republican Party’s “biggest loser”, whose campaigning had failed in 2018, 2020 and now 2022.

Mr Trump still polls as the top choice among Republicans for the party’s 2024 presidential nomination. Despite that, the king-making media family is apparently instead turning its focus to one of his key rivals for the Republican nomination – Florida governor Ron DeSantis, who was resoundingly returned in last week’s elections.

Mr DeSantis and Mr Trump were once allies – until rumours started to swirl that Mr DeSantis would run for president in 2024.

Ahead of the midterm elections, Mr Trump took to calling his former friend “Ron DeSanctimonious”.

Republicans tipped for US House majority

Republicans are projected to win a majority in the US House of Representatives, setting the stage for two years of divided government as President Joe Biden’s Democratic Party holds control of the Senate.

The victory gives Republicans the power to rein in Mr Biden’s agenda, as well as to launch potentially politically damaging probes of his administration and family, though it falls far short of the “red wave” the party had hoped for.

The final call came after more than a week of ballot counting, when Edison Research projected Republicans had won the 218 seats they needed to control the House. Republican victory in California’s 27th Congressional district took the party over the line.

The party’s House leader, Kevin McCarthy, will take the reins as Speaker from Democrat Nancy Pelosi. He might have a challenging road ahead as he will need his restive caucus to hold together on critical votes, including funding the government and military as Mr Trump launches his fresh White House run.

While the loss takes away some of Mr Biden’s power in Washington, he has signalled he expected Republicans to co-operate.

“The American people have made clear, I think, that they expect Republicans to be prepared to work with me as well,” he said last week.

Democrats have been buoyed by voters’ repudiation of a string of far-right Republican candidates, most of them allies of Mr Trump, including Mehmet Oz and Doug Mastriano in Pennsylvania’s Senate and governor’s races respectively, and Blake Masters in Arizona’s Senate contest.

Even though the expected “red wave” of House Republicans never reached shore, conservatives are sticking to their agenda.

In retaliation for two impeachment efforts by Democrats against Mr Trump, they are gearing up to investigate Biden administration officials and the president’s son Hunter’s past business dealings with China and other countries – and even Mr Biden himself.

On the international front, Republicans could seek to tamp down US military and economic aid to Ukraine as it battles Russian forces.

The US returns to its pre-2021 power-sharing in Washington as voters were tugged in opposite directions by two main issues during the midterm campaigns.

High inflation gave Republicans ammunition for attacking liberals, who won trillions of dollars in new spending during the COVID-19 pandemic. With voters seeing their monthly grocery, petrol and rent bills rising, so rose the desire for punishing Democrats in the White House and Congress.

At the same time, there was a tug to the left after the Supreme Court’s June ruling ending the right to abortion enraged a wide swath of voters, bolstering Democratic candidates.

While the midterms were all about elections for the US Congress, state governors and other local offices, hovering over it all was the 2024 US presidential race.

-with AAP

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