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Donald Trump announces presidential bid

Donald Trump spoke on his personal wealth, China, Secretary of State John Kerry's bike accident and more in the top moments from his presidential announcement. (Video: Sarah Parnass/The Washington Post)

This story was updated at 11:51 a.m.

Donald J. Trump, the real estate mogul and reality television celebrity, announced Tuesday that he would seek the Republican presidential nomination.

"We need somebody that literally will take this country and make it great again. We can do that," Trump told a crowd of supporters at the eponymous Trump Tower in New York. "So ladies and gentlemen, I am officially running for president of the United States."

Donald Trump announces presidential run

epa04803133 US businessman Donald Trump holds a piece of paper with information about his personal finances while announcing that he is running to be president of the United States, during an event at Trump Tower in New York, New York, USA, 16 June 2015. Real estate mogul and reality television star Donald Trump said he is running for US president. Trump, who has toyed with seeking the nation's highest elected office for years, dismissed the 11 other Republican candidates seeking the centre-right party's nomination for the 2016 presidential elections by declaring that politicians cannot solve the US' economic problems. Trump is the 12th candidate for the Republican nomination and despite his widespread name recognition is not considered a serious contender by political observers. EPA/JUSTIN LANE (Justin Lane/EPA)

The tycoon's announcement, according to people familiar with his plans, is set to be followed by the release of a self-drafted financial summary of his assets, including an outline of his debts. Robert Costa and Matea Gold had a preview Monday:

Trump’s speech announcing his decision is likely to center on his career and fortune. He is expected to cast himself as an entrepreneur and outsider eager to tangle with the party establishment and U.S. economic rivals abroad, such as China.
The financial statement drafted by his office is aimed at demonstrating his success as a businessman, as well as proving to skeptical GOP leaders that he is willing to disclose as much as other candidates at this stage.

[Donald Trump will declare $9 billion in assets as he reveals 2016 plans]

Trump has publicly flirted with a White House bid for several campaign cycles, with critics dismissing the highly public decision-making process as attempts to increase his media exposure.

But Trump began indicating earlier this year that he was seriously considering a 2016 run. In addition to launching a presidential exploratory committee in March, he also decided in March to delay production on his long-running reality show, "The Apprentice," in order to focus his efforts on a potential campaign. In February, he began hiring staff in early voting states.

The possible White House contender on Obamacare and building a border wall (Video: Julie Percha/The Washington Post)

Trump enters the race with nearly unmatched name recognition and a powerful real estate brand -- but a reputation for a quick temper and attention-grabbing celebrity feuds.

[That one time Donald Trump got into a Twitter feud.]

Trump has frequently found himself embroiled in seemingly trivial spats with various public figures, including Arianna Huffington, Rosie O’Donnell and Cher. His bluntness was directed at allies as well. In 2012, after serving as a surrogate for GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney, he questioned the campaign's strategy. "Romney campaign used me in 6 primary states and won every one - they should have used me in Florida and Ohio & he would be President," he tweeted.

The business mogul, who has never held public office, enters an extremely crowded field of Republican presidential hopefuls, now numbering a dozen major candidates. And it remains to be seen how he will distinguish himself from his rivals on policy issues, in part because he's steered clear of many policy specifics: last month, he raised eyebrows when he said he had a "foolproof plan" to defeat the Islamic State terrorist group, but refused to reveal details because "I don’t want the enemy to know what I’m doing."

The Democratic National Committee immediately lampooned Trump's candidacy, indirectly taking a swipe at the entire GOP presidential field.

“Today, Donald Trump became the second major Republican candidate to announce for president in two days. He adds some much-needed seriousness that has previously been lacking from the GOP field, and we look forward to hearing more about his ideas for the nation," DNC spokeswoman Holly Shulman said in a statement.

What's clear is that Trump -- who has been traveling heavily in early-voting states -- plans to tout his business credentials and paint himself as a Washington outsider. In his announcement speech, Trump aggressively stressed his business savvy while knocking the political class for failing to deliver on promises.

"Politicians are all talk, no action. Nothing is going to get done. They will not bring us, believe me, to the promised land. They will not," Trump said. "I've been on the circuit making speeches and I hear my fellow Republicans — and they're wonderful people, I like them! They all want me to support them! — ... I watch the speeches of these people and they say, 'The sun will rise, the moon will set! All sorts of wonderful things will happen!'"

Though Trump faces an uphill battle to be taken seriously by his rivals, political watchers and the media, his enormous wealth means that he will be able to fund his own campaign out of pocket.

"I don't need anybody's money. I'm using my own money. ... I'm really rich," he told supporters.

[More on Trump's campaign here]