Former President Donald Trump made a return to the political arena Saturday night with a speech at the North Carolina Republican Party State Convention in Greenville. It was his first major speech since February, when Trump spoke at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida. But this time around it was not as easy for his followers to tune in and hear him once again espouse the lies of how the election was stolen from him. Fox News and CNN both decided not to broadcast Trump’s speech live. MSNBC did end up airing portions of the speech but only as background while correspondents commented on the event. The right-wing networks that are vying for Trump supporters, Newsmax and One America News, did air the former president’s speech.
CNN even devoted a bit more attention to the speech than Fox News did. While Fox News decided to air a pre-taped Watters World show while the former president was speaking, CNN did have a segment in which guests discussed Trump’s speech and talked about how the former president seemed to be losing power. “The fact that CNN is not covering him live tonight with his speech. This is the first time—he hasn’t been out in three months,” David Gergen, a former presidential adviser to several administrations, said, according to Mediaite. “Fans are eager to know how he is evolving. CNN decided not to cover it. I think it is exactly the right decision. But it’s because he’s become less relevant to the future. He spent so much time trying to win arguments about the past, he is now losing the future.”
During his speech, Trump gave his “complete and total” endorsement to North Carolina Rep. Ted Budd to replace retiring Republican Sen. Richard Burr after Lara Trump said she wouldn’t be entering the race. “Now you may have heard a rumor that I have been considering possibly running for Senate,” Lara Trump said. “I am saying no for now, not no forever.” Besides the surprise endorsement, the former president devoted much of his 90-minute speech to espousing the familiar lies about the election, which he said will “go down as the crime of the century.” He also repeatedly criticized President Joe Biden and warned “our country is being destroyed before our very own eyes.”