Donald Trump denied any "
" and claimed his innocence on Saturday in Waco, where he held his first campaign rally for the US presidential election.
If several thousand people came to applaud the billionaire for this oratory exercise that he loves, under the Texan sun, the crowd remained far from the 15,000 people expected, noted journalists on the spot.
We represent a huge power behind Donald Trump, who is just waiting to be unleashed,
" assured a faithful, Kelly Heath, 49, who traveled several hundred kilometers from Georgia (southeast) to applaud his idol .
I love him, he is our saviour
,” added Marianna Bodrogi, a 69-year-old retiree.
The crowd of fans remained far from the expected 15,000 people.
LEAH MILLIS / REUTERS
Donald Trump's election rally in Waco, Texas, March 25, 2023. GO NAKAMURA / REUTERS
“Neither a crime, nor a misdemeanor, nor an affair”
The former US president, who is facing indictment, has for more than a week been brandishing the threat of imminent arrest in New York in a payment case to porn actress Stormy Daniels just before his 2016 victory. to determine whether he was guilty of misrepresentation, an offense, or breach of campaign finance laws, a criminal offense, by having paid money to the actress to buy her silence.
The billionaire drew loud applause by attacking Manhattan prosecutor Alvin Bragg, in charge of the investigation, and his colleagues, calling them “
radical leftist maniacs
The New York District Attorney, under the auspices and direction of the 'Department of Injustice' in Washington DC
" is conducting an investigation for "
something that is neither a felony, nor a misdemeanor, nor an affair
," a he said in front of his supporters, denouncing once again a “
On March 21, he had tried in vain to mobilize a tide of supporters in the streets of Manhattan to oppose what he had presented as an imminent arrest, and which did not take place.
All presidents have had mistresses.
Why not him?
said Louis, a 72-year-old retiree, accompanied by his 16-year-old grandson, whom he says is a "
" of Trump even though he is not of voting age.
The former president is also under threat of investigations into his 2020 Georgia election lobbying and handling of classified White House records.
Highly symbolic place
To address his fans, the former American president chose Waco, Texas, in the southern United States.
This city of 130,000 inhabitants had been the scene 30 years ago of a murderous assault against a sect opposed to federal power.
In the spring of 1993, the world was suspended for 51 days by the FBI's siege of a ranch in which armed followers of guru David Koresh had entrenched themselves.
Seventy-six members of the sect, including 20 children, were found dead after the ranch fire.
Four police officers were also killed.
Donald Trump made no allusion to this drama and a spokesman told the press that the Texas city had been chosen because of its central location and its good connections.
He tried on Saturday to find a second wind with an acquired crowd, among the stands selling the entire panoply of the Trump brand, from "
" and "
" caps to a white shirt with the slogan: "
God, the weapons, Trump in Waco, Texas
Because even if most polls give him the winner of a primary to date, his campaign is struggling to obtain the expected momentum.
The billionaire, who continues against all odds to evoke supposed "frauds" never proven in the 2020 election, has seen part of the right - and in particular its wealthy donors - turn to the new champion of the hard right, Ron DeSantis, 44.
The governor of Florida is not yet officially launched in the race but will undoubtedly be one of his biggest rivals for the Republican nomination in 2024. The Fox News channel, which was once acquired by the billionaire, has not covered the Waco meeting only at a minimum.