Donald Trump at a meeting in Waco, former stronghold of an anti-federal sect

Threatened with indictment, Donald Trump offers his first campaign meeting this Saturday for the presidential election in a highly symbolic place, the Texas town of Waco, the scene 30 years ago of a deadly assault against a sect opposed to the federal power.

The former American president, who claimed – wrongly – that he would be ” stopped “ March 21 in New York in a payment case to pornographic actress Stormy Daniels, will take the stage at 5 p.m. local time (22:00 GMT), for her “first rally for the 2024 election”. “Big Crowd in Texas – See You Later!” », said Donald Trump on Saturday on his Truth Social social network. The city of Waco, population 130,000, remains associated with the anti-government Davidian sect.

Seventy-six dead including 20 children

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’s campaign team did not respond to requests from AFP as to the choice of Waco for the meeting. The former president, also under threat of investigations into his 2020 Georgia election lobbying and handling of classified White House records, regularly poses as the victim of a mysterious “Shadow State”.

The spectacular FBI search of his residence in Florida? “A shocking abuse of power”. The two infamous congressional impeachment proceedings against him? "A Witch Hunt".

little dance steps

By returning to his base at a meeting in Waco – where up to 15,000 people are expected – Donald Trump is also reconnecting with an exercise he loves. The scenes of the former president, in the process of sketching small dance steps, or throwing his famous red caps to the crowd are now cult among his followers. In the Texas city, some of his fans were already stamping with impatience on Friday evening, visibly unconcerned by the legal troubles of their idol.

“Everything is distorted to give it a bad image”assured AFP Kelly Heath, 49, seeing it as an attempt to "to shut up". Above all, this meeting offers the Republican the opportunity to breathe new life into his campaign, which for the moment does not enjoy the expected momentum even if most polls give him the winner of a primary.

The billionaire, who continues against all odds to evoke supposed « frauds » never proven in the 2020 election, has also seen parts of the right – and notably 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.

Source : Nouvelobs

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