Donald Trump paraded his newest backer in front of an excited New Hampshire crowd on Tuesday evening, saying Vivek Ramaswamy had a ‘big, beautiful, bright future’ in front of him after dropping out of the race.
He introduced his former rival as he called for the Republican Party to get behind his candidacy ahead of November election.
‘It’s time for the Republican Party to unify come together and move forward as one team we have to be crooked Joe Biden,’ said Trump to ecstatic roars at the Atkinson Country Club.
He took the stage in New Hampshire after the sort of 24 hours that would represent a series of extraordinary twists for any other candidate. For Trump it was almost business as usual.
After crushing his rivals by 30 points in the Iowa caucuses — the first formal test of his popularity — on Monday night, he flew to New York for his defamation trial where a judge told prospective jurors that another jury had already found that the former president sexually abused columnist E. Jean Carroll in the 1990s.
President Donald Trump introduced Vivek Ramaswamy to an ecstatic crowd in Atkinson, New Hampshire, on Tuesday evening at the end of whirlwind 24 hours
For Trump it was just another day of the 2024 campaign.
And it ended with a chance to unveil Ramaswamy, who dropped out a day earlier after a disappointing fourth place finish in Iowa.
He quickly heaped praise on Trump as the sort of leader who could bring stability to a country at war.
‘It’s between the permanent state and the everyday citizen, between those of us who love the United States of America and a fringe minority, who hates this country and what we stand for,’ he said.
‘And right now we need a commander in chief who will lead us to victory in this war.’
Trump had other business to attend to earlier in the day.
He glowered and grimaced as the judge in his New York defamation trial addressed jurors. And then he was off, leaving before opening statements to race to New Hampshire.
The former president also faces four criminal cases and 91 charges as well as the defamation case.
He has used his court appearances as a campaign tool, addressing reporters outside the courtroom and using what he says are ‘witch hunts’ to rally his base and raise money.
He admitted as much last week after listening to closing arguments in the New York fraud lawsuit against him. ‘I guess you’d consider it part of the campaign,’ he told reporters.
None of the allegations made a dent in the enthusiasm of the crowd in the ballroom of the Atkinson Country Club.
As of 7.30am, Trump had more than 51 percent of the votes with Haley and DeSantis scrapping in second place and third place
After dispatching his opponents in Iowa,
Michael Navaria, 57, a retired police officer attending his first Trump event with his wife, said supporters just tuned out details of the ‘witch hunt.’
‘Absolutely. It upsets me that they are going after him,’ he said. ‘It is so obviously political.’
He added that it was up to voters to choose the president, not courts or lawyers. And Trump had an enviable record in office.
‘Everything he says happens,’ said Navaria.
Hundreds of people braved freezing temperatures and a blizzard to line up for Trump in Atkinson, New Hampshire, Tuesday evening
Trump supporters filled a basement ballroom, waiting four hours before Trump appeared
Trump’s courtroom campaign is working so far. In Iowa, he won the state’s caucuses by 30 percent, leaving Gov. Ron DeSantis and former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley both trying to claim they were the only viable alternative to the former president.
He leads polls in New Hampshire, but will face a stiffer challenge there from Haley, who has made inroads with the state’s more moderate electorate.
She launched a statewide ad Tuesday, slamming the possibility of a Trump-Biden rematch in November.
‘The two most disliked politicians in America,’ is how the ad describes them, saying they are both being ‘consumed by chaos, negativity and grievances of the past.’