What Happened When People Tried Leaving Trump's Big Announcement Before He Was Finished

Yesterday, Donald Trump announced that he's running for president again in 2024, ending months of speculation about his future plans. Serving two non-consecutive terms would be highly unusual, as just one other US president in history has done so, according to CNN. Trump's big announcement speech, which was televised from his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida — notably, the same place the FBI recovered more than 300 classified documents following the execution of a search warrant in August, per The New York Times — was also loaded with inaccuracies, per CNN.

Trump's speeches and rallies have gained infamy over the years for being rowdy, racist, misogynistic, and riotous (via the L.A. Times). In fact, a rally he held on January 6th, 2021, meant to challenge the loss of his reelection, infamously culminated in a deadly attack on the Capitol building (via NPR). But Trump's 2024 campaign launch elicited a different kind of response from the gathered crowd. Most people were bored by the former president's remarks, including his allies, per The Independent. As for those who tried to leave the event early, they were in for a big surprise. 

The former president didn't exactly have a captive audience

As one Rolling Stone headline hilariously noted: "Trump's 2024 Announcement Was So Boring Even Fox News Cut Away." Prominent Republican commentator Meghan McCain was among several Twitter users who shared the sentiment, even tweeting during the speech: "Why is this so boring...?" Meanwhile, Newsweek reported: "Trump Mocked for 'Boring,' Low-Energy 2024 Announcement," while Politico stated that Trump's inexplicably hour-long speech "meandered at times."

This could partially explain a video posted on Twitter by ABC journalist Olivia Rubin, which shows a group of people waiting near the room's main exit, seemingly looking to leave, while Trump continues his speech onstage. "A crowd has formed by the exit of the ballroom as some try to leave Trump's announcement speech before he has finished," the clip's caption reads. "But security won't let them." It is still not immediately clear why security kept attendees in the room.

Twitter users had a field day with the video. "I missed the part of Trump's speech where he took hostages," Democratic strategist Adam Parkhomenko wrote in response, while another user described it as: "The most heavy-handed metaphor for America in 2022 I've ever seen." A third commenter quipped that the controversial politician was simply "Locking in votes." Talk about a captive audience!