Amid a raging virus, struggling economy and unrest over racial justice, President Donald Trump focused on his reelection campaign.
Sounding pleased to be in friendly territory during a rally Friday evening in Macon, Georgia, Trump spoke for close to two hours, making sporadic references to the coronavirus pandemic, trade and the U.S. economy. But most of his remarks focused on his own personal grievances — the joy he alleged his opponents felt at his virus diagnosis, a news media he continues to argue is stacked against him, technology companies and, of course, his Democratic opponent, Joe Biden, and his family.
At one point, Trump threatened to leave the country should he lose the election.
“Could you imagine if I lose?” he said. “I’m not going to feel so good. Maybe I’ll have to leave the country, I don’t know.”
Trailing in the polls and at a significant cash deficit compared with Biden, Trump attempted to argue that he was opting against raising more money as he enters the final stretch of the election.
“I will deliver optimism, opportunity and hope, and that’s what we’re doing, and this is why we have this kind of spirit, and I hate to say it because I don’t want to insult Georgia, but it’s this way all over our country,” Trump told a cheering crowd at the campaign event, later mocking the social distancing and face coverings at Biden’s campaign events.
Trump added: “I shouldn’t joke because you know what? Running against the worst candidate in the history of presidential politics puts pressure on me. Could you imagine if I lose?
My whole life, what am I going to do? I’m going to say ‘I lost to the worst candidate in the history of politics.’ I’m not going to feel so good."
“Maybe I’ll have to leave the country? I don’t know.” Trump added.
The anti-Trump GOP group The Lincoln Project quickly jabbed the president over his comment.
“promise?” they shot back on Twitter.
Biden's campaign featured the president's comments in its own video on social media - “I’m Joe Biden and I approve this message.”
Trump also joked in 2016 that if he lost the Republican nomination for president, he would not remain in the public eye.
"I'm not sure you're ever going to see me there. I don't think I'm going to lose, but if I do, I don't think you're ever going to see me again, folks. I think I'll go to Turnberry and play golf or something," he is quoted saying at the time.