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Commentary: Anticipating Donald Trump's Exit Speech

Donald Trump announced Tuesday he would seek the Republican nomination for president. (Richard Drew/AP)
Donald Trump announced Tuesday he would seek the Republican nomination for president. (Richard Drew/AP)
This article is more than 4 years old.

Not surprisingly, Donald Trump announced his candidacy for the GOP presidential nomination Tuesday by trumpeting his greatness and ad-libbing like crazy. Literally, like crazy.

Phil Bump, blogging for The Washington Post, reported that Trump’s people emailed his prepared remarks while he was speaking, but…

He was supposed to say:

Our country is in serious trouble. We are not respected by anyone. We are a laughingstock all over the world. ISIS, China, Mexico are all beating us. Everybody is beating us. Our enemies are getting stronger and we are getting weaker.

He actually said:

It's great to be at Trump Tower. It's great to be in a wonderful city, New York. And it's an honor to have everybody here. This is beyond anybody's expectations. There's been no crowd like this. And, I can tell, some of the candidates, they went in. They didn't know the air-conditioner didn't work. They sweated like dogs. They didn't know the room was too big, because they didn't have anybody there. How are they going to beat ISIS? I don't think it's gonna happen. Our country is in serious trouble. We don't have victories anymore. We used to have victories, but we don't have them. When was the last time anybody saw us beating, let's say, China in a trade deal? They kill us. I beat China all the time. All the time.

If you read the entire text of his remarks, you’ll see that he continued to be just as incoherent.

It’s not too early to imagine how Donald Trump will exit the race, once it’s embarrassingly clear that staying in longer will only make him more of a joke.

Like his announcement of candidacy, he’ll enter the hall by escalator. But this time, he will walk down the escalator -- instead of standing motionless on it — to project the image of an upbeat candidate who is eager to announce that he is firing himself.

“My fellow Americans,” he might say to a sparse crowd of Trump fans, “I got your message that I’m too good for politics. You made clear that the cesspool in Washington, D.C., is not for me – that you need me, instead, to lead America on TV. So, after many conversations with important people -- not reporters — I’ve accepted your draft to start a new season of ‘The Apprentice’.

“It will be the greatest season of the greatest show on the greatest network, on the greatest night of the week. I will be greater than I have ever been, and the audience will be huuuuge. Huger than the hugest huge that has ever, ever been before. Gigantic ratings. Gross-out ratings.

“I am doing this for the American people. I could have won the presidency -- polls were ready to go in reverse for me, all the major experts who know anything at all -- told me, ‘Donald, you’re bouncing back – pollsters don’t know squadoosh about trends and opinions. Real people are giving you an important subtext message, and that is: ‘Mr. Trump, we need you to lead us for real -- on television — to save us from ourselves. We need you to be great where no one else dares to be great: firing people on TV, in prime time’ -- the most prime of all prime time-- even firing celebrity apprentices; all kinds of apprentices, some good, some people who stink.

“Honestly, I was willing to live in the White House, as small as it is -- with a bunch of staff people wandering around in offices, not even plush offices -- no gold inlay, no chandeliers that really cry out: ‘hey, I’m a chandelier.’ No Trump branding on Roman pillars, or anything that would make Americans proud of this once-great country. I was willing to make the sacrifice. But I’m not going to let down the American people in their hour of need -- and the hour is prime time.

“So I’m going to let the politicians run things for another four years. They will foul it up, as they have been doing since Warren Harding brought us some normalcy. Then, after people say: we need Trump to save us, I might make a real run for this office. I’d campaign like I didn’t do this time, buying real estate for the greatest campaign headquarters this country has ever seen -- a skyscraper, big as Trump Tower, but more parking for millions of volunteers. And volunteers will flock in like it’s nobody’s business. Flocks of them. But that’s four years from now when I won’t have the duty of saving the greatest network from losing its greatest show, with the greatest audience of Americans who really care about this country.

“Real Americans, not the kind who are illegal from countries that are eating our lunch and spitting it out, in our faces or wherever they feel like spitting. Real Americans, not like reporters who think they’re journalists because they envy my hair. Frankly, I wouldn’t let these low-lifes anywhere near my hair. They tear this country down with their so-called facts — facts that aren’t real facts. And now what will they do without Donald Trump to cover? Most of them won’t know what to do — they should be fired; they are incompetent and they kill the American Dream. I have a dream for America, and they don’t like my dream – my dream is to create two jobs for every American who wants a job. I would have deported lazy Americans and turned regular Americans into millionaires and billionaires. They wouldn’t make as many billions as I have – which is over seventeen trillion, if you count gross receipts and gratuities.

“I’m really rich. I’m not apologizing for being the greatest in everything I put my name on. The greatest golf courses. I have shoes worth more than Ted Cruz. I have pants and suits that are bigger than any of Hillary’s pantsuits. My hair is cooler and more golden than Rand Paul’s hair.

“So I am proud to accept the draft of Americans begging me to keep hope alive on television, to keep creating jobs and gigantic buildings that are Trump-branded like no one else can brand.

“Quitting this race is the greatest gift I can give the American people. They need to get their act together in the next four years so when they demand I run for president again, I can say -- yes, America, you deserve me now. I will be your commander-in-chief because you are prepared to serve as citizens of this once-great nation -- a nation where I’ll continue to be great for all time.”

Balloons drop, branded with the Trump logo. And inside, a gold ticket to the special live show of “The Apprentice” season finale.

Todd Domke is a Republican political analyst for WBUR.

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Todd Domke Twitter Republican Political Analyst
Todd Domke is a Republican political analyst for WBUR.

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