Trump promises wild rally and mass deportations

Supporters of US President Donald Trump wait along one of the main streets outside the Amway Center on June 17, 2019 some 40 hours before a Trump campaign event in Orlando, FloridaImage copyright
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Mr Trump will launch his re-election bid in Orlando on Tuesday night

US President Donald Trump will formally launch his re-election campaign later, after threatening to unleash a wave of mass deportations next week.

He tweeted that authorities will start “removing the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States”.

The Republican president will make his case for a second term in office at an evening rally in Florida.

Early polls place Mr Trump behind some potential Democratic challengers.

“Going to be wild – See you later!” tweeted the president on Tuesday, hours before he was due to take to the stage in Orlando.

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Media captionWhat does this hat mean to Americans?

What did Trump say about deportations?

Mr Trump tweeted on Monday night that undocumented migrants in the US would be “removed as fast as they come in”.

US Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) typically does not announce raids, and the agency’s officials told US media they had been unaware the president would tweet about the plans.

Earlier this month, acting ICE Director Mark Morgan said authorities would target migrants who have received final orders of deportation, including families.

In his Monday night tweets, Mr Trump also contrasted Mexico’s “strong immigration laws” – the product of a new agreement to avert US tariffs – with US Democratic border policies.

As a part of the deal, Mexico is deploying 6,000 National Guard personnel to its borders to crack down on Central American migration.

A senior Mexican official told the Associated Press news agency the number of migrants arriving at the US border had already dropped from 4,200 to 2,600 per day.

What’s happening in Florida?

Thousands of supporters have already gathered in front of the venue for the president’s rally.

Some have been camping outside the Amway Center arena in Orlando since early Monday morning.

CBS News reports many of the voters in the queue listed the economy and immigration among their top concerns – issues Mr Trump is sure to address throughout his campaign.

Protesters will also attend – and after a successful GoFundMe campaign, the Baby Trump balloon that took to the skies above London during the president’s recent UK visit will also put in an appearance.

Florida is a key battleground state and one that Mr Trump won narrowly in 2016.

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Some Trump supporters have been waiting outside since 02:00 on Monday

Uncharted territory

Tonight in Orlando, Donald Trump will officially announce he is seeking another four-year presidential term. This should come as absolutely no surprise, given that he filed re-election paperwork the day after his January 2017 inauguration and has been holding campaign-style rallies pretty much nonstop since moving into the White House.

If Democratic hopefuls can hold multiple official and unofficial kick-off events, however, there’s little wonder that Mr Trump – the master of dominating the 24-hour news cycle – wants in on the action.

During what is sure to be another frequently ad-libbed speech, expect extended boasting about the state of the US economy, which – despite some concerning indicators – remains buoyant.

Traditionally, numbers this good and a nation at peace are a golden ticket to four more years for an American president. That polls, including his own campaign’s internal ones, show Mr Trump with an uphill fight on his hands are just a small clue that this is an unusual president running through uncharted political territory.

The presidential race won’t begin in earnest for months yet, but this moment in Orlando is as good a time as any to calibrate clocks, check the prevailing conditions and look out on the journey ahead.

What is happening in the polls?

According to Gallup, Mr Trump’s approval rating has never been over 46% – and as of last month, it dipped to 40%.

His most favourable polling from Rasmussen puts him at 48% approval.

And when compared to his Democratic challengers, a poll from the president’s favourite outlet, Fox News, placed him behind Mr Biden by 10 percentage points and Bernie Sanders by nine.

Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris also lead Mr Trump, albeit by a smaller margin.

The president’s aides have pointed out he was also written off in opinion surveys back in 2016.

The Trump reportedly campaign fired several of its hired pollsters after leaks showed the president losing to Democrats next year in several key battleground states.

But Mr Trump has maintained his polls “show us leading in all 17 Swing States”.

Who will take on Trump in 2020?

President Donald Trump is facing a wide field of Democratic contenders in 2020. So who has a shot at becoming the next president?

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