Trump’s ‘Gettysburg address’ makes closing argument for choosing him and unveils first-100-days agenda
- ‘First 100 days’ agenda speech formalized his mainstay political pledges with promises of legislation and executive orders
- Called it a ‘Contract with the American Voter,’ modeling it after the 1994 Republican ‘Contract with America’
- Trump touted ‘the kind of change that only arrives once in a lifetime’ and made his final substantive pitch to frame the campaign’s last two weeks
- Told an audience of about 300 invited guests that he will ‘drain the swamp’ in Washington
- Borrowed a line from Abraham Lincoln’s 1863 speech, saying he would replace D.C. elites ‘with a new government of, by and for the people.’
- A Trump aide said the Civil War battlefield site is appropriate because ‘Gettysburg was the moment when the war turned’
- The candidate briefly visited the site of the famed Civil War battle after his speech
Donald Trump planted a flag on hallowed ground Saturday morning by laying out near the Gettysburg National Battlefield what he would do in his first 100 days as President of the United States.
Touting ‘the kind of change that only arrives once in a lifetime,’ Trump told an audience of about 300 invited guests that he will ‘drain the swamp’ in Washington, replacing the current government ‘with a new government of, by and for the people.’
The symbolism factor was high, with a campaign aide telling reporters Friday night that the Civil War battle in Gettysburg memorialized by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863 ‘was the moment when the war turned.’
The Republican nominee left the podium and made a beeline in his motorcade for the National Military Park – the battlefield memorial – spending about as much time there as it took Lincoln to speak his 272 words.
Trump’s own war – a two-front clash against both Hillary Clinton and the mass media – will come to a climax on November 8 when most Americans will choose a leader for the next four years.
He summed up the substance of his campaign in a ‘Contract With The American Voter’ – a point-by-point set of initiatives that track with the themes he has focused on for 16 months.
Donald Trump laid out an agenda for his first 100 days as President of the United States – provided he can win – with a Saturday morning speech in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
Trump stopped at the Gettysburg National Military Park after his speech, speaking with Park ranger Caitlin Kostic (center) and campaign CEO Steve Bannon (right) near ‘Cemetery Ridge’ where Confederate general Robert E. Lee ordered the attack known as Pickett’s Charge
‘Gettysburg was the moment when the war turned,’ a senior campaign aide said Friday night in a hopeful comparison with this year’s presidential election
‘It is a contract between myself and the American voter, and begins with restoring honesty, accountability and change to Washington,’ Trump said.
Included are six anti-corruption pledges, seven actions related to jobs and trade and five on immigration and the ‘rule of law.’ He ended his contract with a list of 10 bills he said he would try to quickly shepherd through Congress.
Aides promised the Republican nominee would put more meat on the bare bones of some of his mainstay pledges, but little in the speech broke new ground.
Instead, Trump formalized his signature pledges by announcing a legislative package that he said he would help shepherd through Congress.
TRUMP’S ANTI-CORRUPTION TO-DO LIST
1. Constitutional Amendment to impose term limits on members of Congress
2. Hiring freeze on federal employees to reduce the workforce through attrition
3. Requirement to eliminate two federal regulations for every new one
4. Five-year-ban on White House and Congressional officials becoming lobbyists
5. Lifetime ban on White House officials lobbying for foreign governments
6. Complete ban on foreign lobbyists raising money for American elections
He also reiterated a laundry list of executive actions that he has sketched out in speeches stretching back more than a year.
The small crowd gathered in a hotel ballroom was a far cry from the 10,000 rowdy fans he typically draws, but they brought moments of enthusiasm.
The audience rose to their feet and chanted ‘Trump! Trump! Trump!’ as he entered. One man shouted: ‘We love you!’
And in a sign of how deeply the GOP’s most negative campaign slogan has taken root, half the crowd chanted ‘Lock her up!’ at the first mention of Hillary Clinton’s name.
Trump reinforced his improbable but now undeniable populist bona fides, casting Clinton as the embodiment of a corrupt political establishment that’s willing to throw the middle class under bus the day after Americans vote.
‘Hillary Clinton is running against all of the American people, and all of the American voters,’ he said.
The billionaire real estate tycoon minced no words about his fears that rampant voter fraud could cost him and other Republicans a fair shot at winning 17 days from now.
Citing Pew Research Center numbers, he said that ‘1.8 million dead people are registered to vote.’
‘And some of them are voting. I wonder how that happens!’
He also referred to 2.8 million people who are ‘registered in more than one state’ and said that ’14 per cent of non-citizens are registered to vote.’