Former President Donald Trump’s announcement that he will seek the Republican nomination for president in 2024 sounded more like an issues-based State of the Union address than a raucous rally speech, according to some observers.
Media critic and Fox News contributor Joe Concha said as much on “Hannity,” pointing to how Trump eschewed his trademark insults against rivals, and largely stuck to issues ailing America – with only “benign” jabs at President Biden’s numerous gaffes.
“[T]he tone was the right one here, no question. It felt more like a State of the Union address and less like a rally speech. Donald Trump tonight largely stuck to the issues,” he said.
“And it was disciplined. He was largely positive in terms of his vision,” Concha continued, adding his critiques of Biden served more to highlight their contrasts than to demean the soon-to-be-octogenarian president.
While Trump has recently attacked potential 2024 rivals Govs. Ron DeSantis of Florida and Glenn Youngkin of Virginia, such rhetoric was noticeably absent from his Palm Beach, Fla., speech.
The absence gave Trump a “presidential” air, Concha said, adding it will be interesting to see what an issue-based primary campaign from the mogul might bring.
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee – whose daughter Sarah Sanders is the state’s governor-elect and a former Trump press secretary – said the 45th president’s speech was “pitch perfect” in its construct.
“If he keeps on like this tonight, he is unbeatable in 2024,” Huckabee said.
“Nobody can touch him. Not a Republican. Not a Democrat: He stayed on message. One of the key things he said, ‘this is not my campaign, this is our campaign’ – He has made it about the American people. He’s reminded them that the reason they voted for him – once and most of us twice – was because he was fighting for us.”
“And he made the comment, ‘this is not about critics and complainers’. He’s looking forward.”
Huckabee predicted if Trump remains on-message and avoids controversial comments or rhetoric, he will be “unbeatable.”
“As I promised in 2016, I am your voice,” Trump said during his address.
“The Washington establishment wants to silence us, but we will not let them do that. What we have built together over the past six years is the greatest movement in history because it is not about politics.”
“It’s about our love for this great country, America, and we’re not going to let it fail,” the 76-year-old said.