Former President Donald Trump spoke for almost two hours as he closed out the Conservative Political Action Conference on Saturday.
In his remarks, he described a country that has been destroyed since he left office and outlined the steps Republicans should take if they win back control of Congress in November.
He decried the inclusion of transgender athletes on women’s sports teams, and reiterated calls for drug dealers to get the death penalty and homeless people to be moved to tent cities.
Trump’s speech was “unapologetic fascism,” Michael Hardy, a senior editor at Texas Monthly, said in a tweet.
“This might be most frightening speech I’ve ever heard,” Hardy wrote, adding that it indicated that the former president’s rhetoric is “significantly more extreme than even a few years ago.”
However, not everyone agreed. Mark Pukita, a Republican who ran for Senate in Ohio this year, said Trump was naming a “list of what Americans want.”
Here, Newsweek you’ve rounded up some key moments from the former president’s speech.
‘America is on the edge of an abyss’
Trump began his speech by declaring the US “is being destroyed more from the inside than out.”
“America is on the edge of an abyss and our movement is the only force on earth that can save it,” he said. “What we do in the next few months and the next few years will determine with American civilization will collapse or fail or whether it will triumph and thrive frankly like never before. This is no time for complacency.”
He said that Republicans must “run aggressive, unrelenting and boldly populist” campaigns. A priority for the next president, he said, will be to “drain the swamp once and for all and remove rogue bureaucrats and root out the Deep State.”
‘Drenched in blood of innocent victims’
“The streets of our Democrat-run cities are drenched with the blood of innocent victims,” Trump claimed.
“Gun battles rage between bloodthirsty street gangs. Bullets tear into crowds at random, killing wonderful beautiful little children that never even had a chance. Carjackers lay in wait like predators hunting their prey.”
Hardy described those comments as “some literal blood-and-soil rhetoric.”
‘Hold the Biden administration accountable’
The November midterms need to be “a national referendum on the horrendous catastrophes radical Democrats have inflicted in our country,” Trump said.
The Republican Party “needs to campaign on a clear pledge that if they are given power, they’re going to fight with everything that they had to shut down the border, stop the crime wave, beat inflation and hold the Biden administration accountable.”
He said job number one for the next Congress and president is “restore public safety.”
‘Felt very strong’
Trump mocked former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson’s testimony alleging he grabbed at the steering wheel of the presidential SUV when the Secret Service refused to let him go to the Capitol on January 6, 2021.
“How about that phoney story?” Trump said.
He went on to suggest that he was flattered at the idea that he could take on “big, strong” Secret Service agents, referring to Hutchinson’s testimony that Trump lunged at Secret Service special agent Bobby Engel.
“I wasn’t sure if I should be honored ’cause I felt very strong,” he said.
‘We will keep men out of women’s sports’
“We will keep men out of women’s sports,” Trump said, before bringing Riley Gaines, a University of Kentucky swimmer who has been critical of transgender swimmer Lia Thomas, on stage.
“Just to show you how ridiculous it is, look at me. I’m much bigger and much stronger than her. There’s no way she could beat me in swimming. Do we all agree?”
Trump also said: “No teacher should ever be allowed to teach transgender to our children without parental consent.”
‘I loved looking at my body’
Trump also boasted about how former White House doctor Ronny Jackson “loved” looking at his body.
“He was a great doctor,” Trump said. “He was an admiral, a doctor and now he’s a congressman. I said, which is the best if you had your choice?
“He loved looking at my body. It was so strong, powerful. But he said I’m the healthiest president that’s ever lived. I was the healthiest. I said, I like this guy.”
‘The woman brings chaos’
Trump took a moment to swipe at House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, criticizing her trip to Taiwan.
He said: “Crazy Nancy Pelosi… What was she doing in Taiwan? Everything she touches turns to—I do not want to say it cause I don’t want them to say I used foul language.”
He went on: “I got impeached twice. She failed twice. The woman brings chaos. And that’s exactly what’s happening. What’s happened in China, Taiwan, what’s going on – she played right into their hands because now they have an excuse to do whatever they’re doing.”
Relocate homeless people in ‘tent cities’
Trump also reiterated his calls for homeless people to be moved to “tent cities” on the outskirts of major US cities.
“It’s also time to take back out streets and public spaces from the homeless and the drug addicted and the dangerously deranged,” he said.
“The only way you’d going to remove the homeless encampments and reclaim our downtowns is to open up large parcels, large tracts of relatively inexpensive land on the outer skirts of the various cities and bring in medical professionals, psychiatrists, psychologists and drug rehab specialists and create tent cities… We have to relocate the homeless until they can get their lives back.”
Death penalty for drug dealers
Trump also repeated his calls to impose the death penalty on drug dealers.
“If you look at countries throughout the world, the only ones that don’t have a drug problem are those that institute the death penalty for drug dealers,” he said.
He said Chinese President Xi Jinping had told him that his country dos not have a drug problem because it executes drug dealers after “a quick trial.”
While acknowledging that “it sounds horrible,” Trump said such policies would effectively reduce drug trafficking in the US
Bring back ‘stop and frisk’
The “tried and true” strategy of stop-and-frisk must return, Trump said, referencing the highly controversial policing tactic.
“Instead of taking the guns from law-abiding Americans let’s take them away from the violent felons and career criminals for a change,” he said.