17:44 GMT21 June 2021
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    The former president reentered the news cycle over the weekend after attending a GOP convention in North Carolina on Saturday to endorse Congressman Ted Budd for the 2022 Senate race. Trump's appearance was only his second since he left office in January.

    Donald Trump appeared on Fox Business Monday morning to speak his mind on a broad range of issues, from the Bitcoin price rollercoaster to his Facebook ban, which was recently extended until 2023, to a possible replacement for Mike Pence in the event of a new run for the presidency in 2024.

    Commenting on the prospects of a run for the House in 2022, Trump said “so many people are saying” that he should do it, but added that “that’s highly unlikely.”

    Sticking to the elections theme, he was asked whether he would consider Florida Governor Ron DeSantis for his running mate if he ran in 2024, Trump said “sure I would.”

    “You know there are numerous people that are great. I would certainly consider Ron. I was at the beginning of Ron. I was the first one to endorse him when he came out as a congressman that a lot of people didn’t know. My endorsement helped him tremendously. I know him very well, he’s a great guy,” Trump suggested.

    The former president praised DeSantis and other Republican governors for opening up their states and easing COVID restrictions, while blasting Democratic governors for keeping schools and businesses closed.

    On Bitcoin and the stock market in general, Trump said he's not currently invested, saying the market was too “high” at the moment for his taste. “Bitcoin – it just seems like a scam. I was surprised, you know with us it was at $6,000 and much lower. I don’t like it because it’s another currency competing against the dollar – essentially it’s a currency competing against the dollar. I want the dollar to be the currency of the world, that’s what I’ve always said.”

    Threat of New Malaise Days

    Commenting on the Biden administration’s efforts to pump hundreds of billions of dollars in addition money into the economy, including via a new infrastructure bill which has been heavily attacked by Republicans, Trump suggested that it would cause “inflation that’s gonna be rampant.”

    “We’ve seen inflation before…I remember a long time ago when the world was cratering and Jimmy Carter and all of this stuff – the things that were happening were not even believable, where interest rates were going up to 22 percent, the prime rate was over 20 percent. What’s going on now is exactly the same but it’s worse, it’s much worse. What they’re doing now guarantees – you already have massive inflation, look at food prices, look at gasoline. We had energy independence, and now that’s gone, it’s gone,” Trump complained.

    Praise for Biden

    Praising his administration’s foreign policy and saying he was “very proud” that the US “got rid of some of these endless wars,” Trump expressed support for the Biden administration’s decision to follow through with the pullout from Afghanistan. “We started that train rolling, it was just about completed, and frankly I’m very happy that they’re going to continue it,” he said.

    Trump went on to blast Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, calling him a “dangerous” person, and suggested that the tech mogul had duplicitously praised him while he was still president.

    “You know, Zuckerberg would come to the White House to have dinner with me, couldn’t be nicer. ‘Sir, you’re number one, congratulations, number one on Facebook,’ all this crap. He would bring his wife,” Trump recalled.
    President Trump Meets with Mark Zuckerberg
    © CC0
    President Trump Meets with Mark Zuckerberg

    “They have to be stopped and they will be stopped – eventually they are going to be stopped,” Trump said of Facebook and other social media platforms, calling the decision to ban him a threat to free speech. “We don’t have free speech anymore, and who are they to tell us what ideology we should be talking about, what politics we should be talking about. They are a disgrace.”

    Trump was permabanned on Twitter and had his Facebook suspended earlier this year after the 6 January Capitol riots amid allegations by the tech companies that he helped instigate the violence. He denies any wrongdoing.

    In addition to being attacked by Democrats, Trump has been slammed by some senior members of his own party in recent months as neoconservatives seek to regain control. On Monday, former Representative Liz Cheney – who has been waging an anti-Trump crusade for the soul of the Republican Party, accused Trump of using language that’s “essentially the same” as that of the Chinese Communist Party.

    “When he says that our system doesn’t work…when he suggests that it’s, you know, incapable of conveying the will of the people, you know, that somehow it has failed – those are the same things that the Chinese government says about us. It’s very dangerous and damaging,” Cheney said.

    Trump delivered a speech at the Republican Party convention in North Carolina on Saturday, expressing confidence that the GOP would have a “tremendous” 2022, and suggesting that without strong borders and election integrity, “our country could be run as a dictatorship.” He went on to suggest that he was interested in “saving” American democracy.

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