Donald Trump’s 2024 presidential bid took a wild turn after he called for the US Constitution to be “terminated” – only to be utterly destroyed by Elon Musk with one single tweet.
The 76-year-old’s divisive comments were made in relation to his repeated, incorrect claims that the 2020 election – in which he was defeated by Joe Biden by more than seven million votes after serving just one term – was “stolen”.
Taking to his Truth Social platform, Mr Trump declared himself the “rightful winner” of the vote, and said articles in the US Constitution should be changed because of “the massive fraud” he falsely claims he experienced, adding America should “throw out” the previous election results or hold a “new election”.
“A Massive Fraud of this type and magnitude allows for the termination of all rules, regulations and articles, even those found in the Constitution,” he posted on the social media site.
“Our great ‘Founders’ did not want, and would not condone False & Fraudulent Elections!”
But it didn’t take long for Musk to respond, tweeting: “The Constitution is greater than any President. End of story”.
Those key four words – “greater than any President” – were picked up on by supporters, with well-known Young Republican Ethan Harsell declaring “the constitution is the greatest document ever created”, and many others praising Musk for taking a stance against the former leader.
Mr Trump’s sensational comments were also quickly slammed by the White House, with spokesman Andrew Bates also describing the US Constitution as a “sacrosanct document”.
“Attacking the constitution and all it stands for is anathema to the soul of our nation and should be universally condemned,” Mr Bates said.
“You cannot only love America when you win.”
Trump’s staggering backflip
As backlash grew, Trump again took to Truth Social to issue a sensational backflip, bizarrely insisting that he didn’t actually call for the termination of the Constitution – despite it being a direct quote from his own platform.
“The Fake News is actually trying to convince the American People that I said I wanted to ‘terminate’ the Constitution. This is simply more DISINFORMATION & LIES, just like RUSSIA, RUSSIA, RUSSIA, and all of their other HOAXES & SCAMS,” he posted.
“What I said was that when there is ‘MASSIVE & WIDESPREAD FRAUD & DECEPTION,’ as has been irrefutably proven in the 2020 Presidential Election, steps must be immediately taken to RIGHT THE WRONG.
“Only FOOLS would disagree with that and accept STOLEN ELECTIONS. MAGA!”
Unsurprisingly, the backflip was seized upon by Trump critics, who wasted no time in laughing at his expense online.
‘This is insane’
Meanwhile, Trump’s Constitution comments have infuriated fellow Republicans, with Illinois Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger branding them as “insane” and pointing out that conservatives cannot continue to support Trump given how treasured the Constitution is by those on the right.
Mr Kinzinger’s tweet attracted an outpouring of support, with prominent US lawyer Sherrilyn Ifill, posting in response that: “If we lose democracy in the short term, it will be b/C of this. Not b/C of Trump, but b/C the leaders of one of our two major political parties are so addicted to power, & so afraid of the rabid base of their own constituents that they cannot commit themselves to draw a line”.
Trump’s recent controversies
Trump’s latest claims come hot on the heels of his official announcement on November 15 that he plans to contest the presidential election in 2024.
But in recent weeks, Mr Trump has attracted even more controversy than usual, firstly after new Twitter owner Elon Musk announced he would be welcomed back on the platform after having his account previously deactivated in the wake of the January 6 insurrection, and then after hosting a dinner with rapper Kanye West and Holocaust denier and White nationalist Nick Fuentes last month.
West has been under fire after making a string of anti-Semitic comments recently, and at the dinner, which was held at Mr Trump’s Florida Mar-a-Lago resort, he reportedly criticised the former leader for failing to adequately support the rioters who stormed the Capitol on January 6, 2021.
Less than two weeks later, Mr Trump issued a statement of strong support for those who were convicted over the riots.
“People have been treated unconstitutionally in my opinion and very, very unfairly, and we’re going to get to the bottom of it,” he said in a video, which was played at a fundraising event held by the Patriot Freedom Project.
He previously claimed he would look into issuing pardons and an official apology to those affected if he were elected again.
Story Credit: news.com.au