Donald Trump calls Putin ‘smart’ and American leaders ‘dumb’ during CPAC speech
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Ex-US president Donald Trump was given a podium at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Florida on Saturday, and it went about as well as you’d expect.

In his keynote speech to the audience, Mr Trump criticised current president Joe Biden, global warming, former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and the “rigged” election of November 2020 – which wasn’t, in fact, rigged.

In other words, it was the usual comments from Trump, but we’ve rounded up the wildest remarks made by the Republican in his CPAC speech below.

1. “The election was rigged”

The beginning of Mr Trump’s address focussed on what commentators have branded ‘The Big Lie’ – in other words, the false claim that the 2020 presidential election was “stolen”, “rigged” or somehow “unfair”.

It was none of those things, of course, with President Biden being certified as the winner on multiple occasions.

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2. “We’ll complete the wall in three weeks”

“The wall will be quickly completed. We’ll build the wall, complete the wall in three weeks.

“It took two and a half years on the wall, two and a half years to win all of the litigation – over 11 lawsuits that they threw at us.

“It will be sealed good and tight, except for people coming in to our country legally,” Mr Trump said of the wall.

The same wall along the US-Mexico border which he didn’t manage to complete in four whole years of his presidency…

3. Branding Ukraine’s president a “brave man” two years after he asked him for dirt on Biden

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky is a “brave man” who is “hanging on” amid the Russian invasion, said Mr Trump. This is despite the ex-Potus being impeached for pressuring Mr Zelensky for information on Hunter Biden in 2019.

Mr Trump added: “The president of Ukraine said, ‘he did nothing wrong’ … He said, ‘he did nothing wrong, absolutely nothing wrong’.”

Except he didn’t, as a New York Times fact check article at the time said it was a misquote – unsurprisingly.

4. “You could take the five worst presidents … and they would not have done the damage” Biden has done

Mr Trump said: “You could take the five worst presidents in American history, and put them together, and they would not have done the damage that Joe Biden and his administration has done in just a very short 13 months.”

How unfortunate then that a poll this time last year found that almost half of Americans think Mr Trump was the worst president ever.

5. “A radical left zealot has been nominated to the Supreme Court of the United States”

The comment came as President Biden nominated Ketanji Brown Jackson, the first Black woman justice, to the Supreme Court on Friday, to replace outgoing judge Stephen Breyer.

6. “This horrific disaster [in Ukraine] would never have happened if our election was not rigged”

Moving on to more pressing issues, the Republican described Russia’s attack on Ukraine this week as “appalling” and “an outrage”.

However, always keen to make politics about himself, Mr Trump said: “As everyone understands, this horrific disaster would not have happened if our election was not rigged and if I was the president.”

Just another reminder for you at this point that the election was not, in fact, rigged.

7. “Of course [Putin’s] smart”

Continuing his comments on the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, Mr Trump said: “The problem is not that Putin is smart – which, of course, he’s smart – but the real problem is that our leaders are dumb, dumb, so dumb.”

The above remarks come from a man who had to repeat the word ‘dumb’ three times to get his point across.

8. Rising sea levels will “give you slightly more seafront property”

Turning to the subject of climate change, Mr Trump mocked comments from Democrats about “global warming, global warming”, joking that “the oceans may rise over the next 300 years, one one-hundredth of an inch”.

The former president, who previously said climate change was a “Chinese hoax”, instead suggesting that rising sea levels would “give you slightly more seafront property”.

9. “The radical left is trying to replace American democracy with woke tyranny”

“The Covid mandates are just one part of a much larger crisis,” Mr Trump said, “the radical left is trying to replace America democracy with woke tyranny.”

In similar comments, Mr Trump claimed the “tyranny we have witnessed in Canada in recent weeks should shock us all”, after its prime minister, Justin Trudeau, invoked the Emergencies Act to deal with truckers protesting his government’s coronavirus measures.

10. “It’s a lot of bulls***”

Mr Trump made the comment about the Democrats, claiming they “rig elections” to “disenfranchise you and destroy you” while saying they will “defend your democracy”.

Apparently, the former president saying a naughty word was enough to warrant a standing ovation from the crowd.

We don’t know why either.

11. Hilary Clinton “spied on my campaign”

“Now you know that crooked Hillary not only spied on my campaign; she spied on the White House,” claimed Mr Trump, referencing a recent court document which alleged a Clinton campaign lawyer provided files to the FBI which “allegedly demonstrated a covert communications channel between the Trump Organization and a Russia-based bank”.

CNNreported that the lawyer in question, Michael Sussmann, pleaded not guilty in September to a charge of lying to the FBI about a separate meeting, while Clinton said: “The more trouble gets into, the wilder the charges and conspiracy theories about me seem to get.”

And as time goes on, Mr Trump’s comments do indeed get weirder and weirder…

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