Trump gets his own stage, hints at VP pick as CNN’s debate competes: ‘there is just no comparison…’

Former President Donald J. Trump easily fielded questions from audience members in a Fox News town hall televised at the same time as an often nasty CNN debate between his two top GOP rivals.

The Republican frontrunner further cemented his status as the man to beat during his Wednesday night appearance in Des Moines, IA, less than a week before Hawkeye State voters go to the polls in the first contest of the 2024 primary season, one which is expected to end with him clinching the party’s nomination.

During the town hall which was moderated by anchors Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum, the nation’s 45th president was poised, engaging, funny, and most importantly of all, reminded Americans of a time of competent leadership and economic prosperity before the left-wing authoritarian dumpster fire that is the Biden administration was unleashed on the nation.

In one of the many memorable moments, Trump was asked whether he had settled on a running mate. “If you are the nominee, which I know you expect to be, who would be in the running for a vice president?” MacCallum asked.

“Well, I can’t tell you that really,” he answered. “I mean, I know who it’s going to be.”

When prodded by Baier for a hint as MacCallum asked him whether he’d “be open to mending fences” with other Republican hopefuls, Trump joked, “I’ve already started to like Christie better,” a line that drew laughter and applause from the audience.

The former New Jersey governor who has spent months attacking the former president in his one-issue campaign dropped out of the race hours before the Fox News town hall.

Trump also reacted to Christie’s remarks about former South Carolina governor and U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley who he predicted is “gonna get smoked” that were caught on a hot mic.

“She’ll be creamed in the election…I happen to believe Chris Christie is right,” Trump said.

In other highlights, Trump promised “We are going to have the largest deportation effort in the history of our country.”

Trump also suggested that the multiple wars that are currently raging are the result of “weak” leadership from President Joe Biden and that he would bring back peace.

“You know, they want to make it like a bad thing. It’s a very good thing. But peace through strength. They didn’t want to mess around. It would have never happened in Ukraine. Russia would have never gone in, would have never happened. The recent attack on Israel would have never happened,” he said.

“They see a weak president in our country,” Trump added, “and they did something that was unthinkable. So we’re going to have peace through strength. We’re not going to have to fight.”

The contrast between Trump’s optimistic tone and the bitter face-off between Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and the media darling Haley on Fox’s competitor couldn’t have been more striking as noted by conservative commentator Megyn Kelly.

Kelly did some gushing over his performance on X.

The two took shots at each other as well as Trump across town in the CNN event hosted by whiny partisan activist Jake Tapper and his fellow anchor Dana Bash on a night easily won by Fox News and the former, and perhaps future, president.

“The Town Hall last night received wonderful reviews. Thank you to Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum for doing a really professional job,” Trump wrote on Truth Social after the town hall, complimenting the Fox News moderators.

Chris Donaldson

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