'Donald DUCK!' Trump given new nickname by GOP rivals after dodging debate despite being named 'true winner'

Donald Trump

Trump was not present at the second presidential election

Holly Bishop

By Holly Bishop

Published: 28/09/2023

- 09:17

Trump's absence will not affect his chances of becoming the Republican candidate, a political expert has said

Donald Trump was not present at the Republican Party debate last night, yet has still been dubbed the “true winner” by a political analyst.

His absence was mocked by his rival, Chris Christie, who jokingly called him “Donald Duck” after Trump decided to skip the second presidential debate.

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Trump’s absence was praised by political expert Gerard Filitti, who said that it will not affect him winning the Republican Primary and said that it was “the right decision in the short term”.

However, Filitti said that it could hurt his chances overall in the 2024 election.

\u200bRepublican candidates participate in the second debate

Republican candidates participate in the second debate


The political expert and Senior Counsel at the Lawfare Practice said: “His refusal may well be perceived as unwarranted arrogance by many Republicans that are not among his base of supporters, as well as by independents.

“While this won’t cost Trump the nomination, it may end up costing him the general election; given the voting turnout in 2020, Trump will need the vote of practically every registered Republican and a majority of registered independents to prevail against the Democratic candidate, presumptively President Biden.”


Trump is currently in the lead to become the Republican nomination for the 2024 election.

One of his rivals, Christie, is down about three per cent in national polls.

He jabbed at Trump for missing the second presidential debate, whilst the former president visited a non-unionised auto plant in Detroit.

Christie said: “Donald, I know you’re watching. You can’t help yourself. I know you’re watching, okay?

“Donald Trump, he hides behind the walls of his golf clubs and won’t show up here to answer questions that all of us … answer,” said Christie, a former Trump advisor.

Meanwhile Ron DeSantis, Governor of Florida, also took a jab at Trump, calling him “missing in action”.

DeSantis, another rival of Trump’s, has plummeted in the polls.

Chris Christie

Chris Christie called out his political opponent


However, discussing Trump’s lead in the ballots, Fiitti said that the polls can often be incorrect.

He said: “History doesn’t like inevitability. George W. Bush was the inevitable Republican nominee - until John McCain entered the race. Hillary Clinton was the inevitable choice to replace Bush until America heard Barack Obama speak.

“It is still far too early in the race to say with any certainty who the candidates will end up being a year from now - which is why these debates absolutely matter.”

Political strategist Amani Wells-On told the Express: “Trump came out of the first GOP debate as the winner despite not even being there.

"As for the other candidates, I don't see any of them coming out as true winners. But depending on their performance, they may get recognized by the Trump administration.

“I think at this point in the election cycle it's all for the hopes of landing a role in this administration. I do not believe any candidate other than Trump even has the slightest chance of winning the primary.”

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