Trump Nixes House Speaker Plans: 'Not Something I Want' Former President Donald Trump speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Orlando, Florida on Feb. 26. (John Raoux/AP Photo)
By Sandy Fitzgerald | Thursday, 31 March 2022 09:02 AM
Former President Donald Trump is rejecting the idea of becoming the House speaker if the Republicans win back the chamber this fall and says he's not deciding on whether he'll run for president in 2024 until after he sees what happens in the November midterm election.
"It's not something I want," Trump said in an interview on the Real America's Voice program "Just the News" about calls from Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., and other Republicans to nominate him as House Speaker. "A lot of people bring it up. It's brought up all the time. It's not something I would be interested in."
Gaetz this past weekend while speaking at Trump's rally in Commerce, Georgia a few days before the interview was televised, announced to the crowd that he intends to nominate the former president to lead the House if their party regains control of the chamber.
"Well, that was interesting," Trump said when taking the mic after Gaetz's comments, which the congressman has repeated often. Trump didn't elaborate further on the matter.
Trump also insisted in the interview that he won't decide on a third presidential race until after the midterms.
"I want to look at what's happening, and then we're going to be doing something else," he commented, insisting that he thinks the elections this year and in 2024 will serve as a test for the future of the United States.
"We don't have a free press," he said. "We really don't have free speech anymore. It's very bad, very dangerous. These elections are going to be absolutely critical for this country."
Trump, meanwhile, said that Democrats won't debate him on the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election because "they know it's crooked."
"I offered to do a debate – public debate," he said. "Nobody took me on, so it's one of those things."
He said the U.S. voting system must be secured, and noted that Texas and Florida, where election reform measures including requirements on voter ID and absentee ballots have been approved, are examples of "great law."
Trump further told the program that he has a plan to defeat President Joe Biden and Democrats and to reverse inflation, high gas prices, and more, beginning with Republicans taking control of at least one of the congressional chambers.
"It's so sad to see what's happened to our great USA. But we can come back. I think these midterms are vital, just vital," he said. "When I watch to see what's happening, it's very, very sad. I mean, our country is being destroyed by these people. The border is a disaster. We are no longer respected. They don't respect our leader at all. They don't respect Biden at all."
Trump said he thinks the House is in "great shape" when it comes to the chance the GOP will regain control but said the Senate is "hurt badly" under Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who he labeled as being "terrible for our country" by allowing the Biden infrastructure bill to pass.
And with the Democrats under Biden, he added, "the system is totally broken. Our system is broken. And we're going into socialism. And we're going into communism."
Trump further said he believes inflation could be helped by increasing oil and gas production, which would lower costs that affect the economy and help the supply chain.
"Can I give you an example on the supply chain?" Trump asked. "You go to a store, they don't have bread, like a third world country. They don't have things. You go to buy something at Tiffany, you go to buy something at a hardware store – high or low – they don't have product. They say, even me, 'When I order things like furnishings for a building or something, they say it's gonna take nine months to get when it used to be like, same day service.'"
Trump further called to seal the border, pointing out that people from "140 countries" are coming across.
"They're almost all letting their prisoners out into the United States," he said. "Why wouldn't they? It's very expensive, keeping prisoners, and they don't want them anyway."
He also insisted in the interview that Russian President Vladimir Putin would not have invaded Ukraine if he was still in the White House, and said he spoke with the Russian leader who knew "he could not" invade Ukraine, "not with me" in office.
Biden's pullout from Afghanistan emboldened Putin, Trump added, but he also doesn't think Putin knew the resistance he'd face with an invasion.