Former President Trump has made a significant reentry onto the X platform (previously known as Twitter), capturing the attention of social media users and the nation by sharing his mugshot from Fulton County, Georgia. Entrepreneur Elon Musk described it as “next-level” when the platform went wild on Thursday over the first-ever mugshot of a US President.
He is using this situation to his advantage; Trump is making the most of his notoriety, and his popularity is increasing rapidly. This marks Trump’s official return to X. It is his first post since the inauguration in January 2021 and comes after being arrested in Fulton County. With evident pride, the former president shared his mugshot accompanied by the words, “ELECTION INTERFERENCE. NEVER SURRENDER! DONALDJTRUMP.COM.”
Previously, Trump primarily utilized his own social media platform known as Truth Social. Many believe that the extensive reach of X has enticed him, prompting him to confront his critics and attackers actively.
His prior tweet in 2021 announced his decision to skip President Biden’s inauguration after losing the 2020 presidential election. Despite Elon Musk’s restoration of his account, Trump resisted calls to return to the platform. In November 2022, he commented on his reinstatement to The Hill, stating, “I don’t see any reason for it; they have a lot of problems at Twitter, you see what’s going on. It may make it, it may not make it,”
In January 2023, as Trump reentered the political sphere, vying for the 2024 presidency, he reportedly terminated his exclusivity deal with Truth Social to reembrace X in anticipation of the 2024 election. This calculated move and his return on the day of his arrest showcase marketing acumen. Trump’s mugshot, which might have caused embarrassment for most people, is instead worn as a badge of honor by him. This stance has resonated with the American populace.
On X, Trump was interviewed by Tucker Carlson, drawing an impressive viewership of over 252 million, surpassing Fox News statistics. His assertion that each indictment only enhances his popularity and reelection prospects seems to be validated, as he now leads other Republican contenders by a significant margin of over 40 points.
Moments before being arrested and booked at the “notoriously violent” Fulton County Jail, Trump dispatched a message to his supporters. His poignant text from the Trump 2024 campaign declared, “This is my last text to you before my arrest, Patriot,” telling viewers that he hopes they read his personal note.
In his “personal note,” he stated that he would be going to the notoriously violent jail in Fulton County, Georgia, and would be arrested despite not committing any crime. He found it interesting that he had gone his entire life without ever being arrested. “…But suddenly, out of nowhere, once I decided to run for president as a political outsider and fight for the forgotten citizens of our country, I got ARRESTED FOUR TIMES.” Trump also mentions that the arrest comes in a span of just five months. He added that, furthermore, a judge has authorized “today’s” event to be broadcast worldwide. Trump believes that the American people know what is going on.
He attributed this to the “Deep State,” punishing him for challenging the status quo and amplifying the voices of the “Silent Majority.” In defiance, Trump affirmed, “I WILL NEVER SURRENDER OUR MISSION TO SAVE AMERICA.”
Trump’s daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, predicted that the release of his mugshot would backfire on his persecutors, with the image becoming emblematic of his supporters’ loyalty. She is most likely right, as many X users showed their support of Trump by posting fake mugshots.
Following his arrest, Trump spoke to reporters, vehemently asserting his innocence. He lamented, “It’s a very sad day for America. This should never happen. If you challenge an election, you should be able to challenge an election.”
Trump added that he believed the election was rigged and stolen, and he had every right to express his opinion. He also noted that many other politicians, including Hillary Clinton and Stacey Abrams, have made similar claims in the past. Trump decried the situation as a “travesty of justice.”
It’s worth noting that all 19 defendants charged with racketeering for contesting Georgia’s 2020 election results surrendered before the noon deadline set by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis on August 25. After Trump’s televised surrender, five more co-defendants turned themselves in at the jail overnight.