Trump denies knowledge of Project 2025

MIAMI (AP) — Donald Trump has distanced itself from Project 2025, a large-scale proposed overhaul of the federal government, drafted by old allies and former officials in his administration, just days after the head of the think tank responsible for the program suggested that a second American Revolution would take place.

“I don’t know anything about Project 2025,” Trump posted on his social media website. “I have no idea who’s behind it. I don’t agree with some of the things they say and some of the things they say are just ridiculous and abominable. Whatever they do, I wish them luck, but I have nothing to do with it.”

The 922-page plan outlines a dramatic expansion of presidential power and a plan to lay off as many as 50,000 government workers and replace them with Trump loyalists. President Joe Biden’s re-election campaign has worked to draw more attention to the agenda, particularly as Biden tries to keep his fellow Democrats on board after his disastrous debate.

“He’s trying to hide his connections to his allies’ extreme Project 2025 agenda,” Biden said of Trump in a statement released by his campaign on Saturday. “The only problem? It was written for him, by those closest to him. Project 2025 should terrify every American.”

Trump has set out his own plans to overhaul the government if he wins a second term, including organizing the largest deportation operation in U.S. history and imposing tariffs on potentially all imports. His campaign has previously warned outside allies against assuming they speak for the former president and suggested that their transition efforts on hold have been unhelpful.

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Kevin Roberts, Chairman of the Heritage Foundation said Tuesday on Steve Bannon’s podcast “War Room” that Republicans are “trying to take this country back.” Former U.S. Congressman Dave Brat of Virginia hosted the show for Bannon, who is serving a four-month prison sentence.

“We are in the midst of the second American Revolution, which will remain bloodless if the left allows it to be,” Roberts said.

The comments were widely circulated online and attacked by Biden’s campaign, which accused Trump and his allies of “dreaming of violent revolution to destroy the idea of ​​America itself.”

Project 2025 should terrify every American. It would give Trump unlimited power over our daily lives, and give him the ability to use the presidency to take “revenge” on his enemies, ban abortion nationwide, punish women who have them, and undermine the checks and balances that make America the greatest democracy in the world. It is extreme and dangerous.

Some of the people involved in Project 2025 are former senior administration officials. The director of the project is Paul Dans, who served as chief of staff at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management under Trump. Trump campaign spokeswoman Karoline Leavitt appeared in one of the Project 2025 videos.

John McEntee, a former director of the White House Presidential Personnel Office in the Trump administration, is a senior adviser. McEntee told the conservative news site The Daily Wire earlier this year that the Project 2025 team would integrate much of its work with the campaign after the summer, when Trump announces his transition team.

Trump’s comments on Project 2025 will be presented at next week’s Republican Party meetings, where the party platform will be drafted.

Project 2025 has been preparing its own 180-day agenda for the next administration, which it plans to share privately rather than as part of its public priority book for a Republican president. A key Trump ally, Russ Vought, who helped draft Project 2025 and is drafting this final pillar, also serves on the Republican National Committee’s platform writing committee.

Project 2025 said in a statement that it is not affiliated with any specific candidate or campaign.

“We are a coalition of more than 110 conservative groups advocating for policy and personnel recommendations for the next conservative president,” the report said. “But it will ultimately be up to that president, who we believe will be President Trump, to decide which recommendations are implemented.”

A Biden campaign spokesman said Project 2025 staffers are also driving the Republican policy platform. “Project 2025 is the extreme policy and personnel handbook for Trump’s second term that is designed to terrify the American people,” Ammar Moussa said.

On Thursday, as the country celebrated Independence Day and Biden prepared for his televised interview following his halting debate performance, the president’s campaign posted on X a shot from the dystopian TV drama “The Handmaid’s Tale” showing a group of women in the show’s red dresses and white hats standing in formation near a reflecting pool with a cross at one end where the Washington Monument is supposed to be. The story revolves around women stripped of their identities and forced to bear children for other couples in a totalitarian regime.

“Fourth of July under Trump’s Project 2025,” the message read.

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Associated Press reporters Jill Colvin in New York and Lisa Mascaro in Washington contributed to this report.

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