Trump Compares Himself to Mandela

( – Donald Trump’s latest speech in New Hampshire generated a host of headlines, including criticism for apparently comparing himself to anti-apartheid South African leader Nelson Mandela. Lashing out at the criminal and civil charges leveled against him over the past year, the former President said, “I don’t mind being Nelson Mandela because I’m doing it for a reason.”

Trump consistently maintains that all charges against him are part of a witch-hunt intended to scupper his chances of retaking the keys to the White House in 2024. He told his audience on October 23 that he and his supporters must fight the “fascists” and “lunatics” that are destroying the United States.

Nelson Mandela, who fought the apartheid regime in South Africa, spent 27 years in prison before working to end the system of racial segregation in partnership with white President FW De Klerk. Both men were awarded Nobel Peace prizes for their efforts and their success in creating a democratic South Africa without bloodshed.

Video clips from the same Trump speech went viral in the following days, partly due to his apparent odd request that his supporters not vote. Mr. Trump urged his loyal followers to “get out there and watch those voters” on election day next year and said they do not need to worry about voting themselves.

“You don’t have to vote; don’t worry about voting. The voting, we got plenty of votes,” he said, leading to some online speculation that he planned to “rig” the election. Governor Ron DeSantis’s team weighed in and said Trump’s rhetoric loses elections. Press Secretary Bryan Griffin compared Trump’s odd comments with DeSantis’s promise to “maximize turnout for R voters AND compete head to head with the Dems.”

Trump’s campaign clarified the former President’s remarks, saying he did not mean people should avoid voting but emphasized the importance of scrutinizing the count. “He was clearly talking about election integrity.. and not letting what happened in 2020 happen again,” a spokesperson said.

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