- Views & Opinions
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker was a featured speaker on Day 3 of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. The theme of the night was “Make America First Again.” The theme of Walker’s speech: “America deserves better.”
The following are remarks prepared for delivery at the convention on July 20 from Walker and others in the prime-time lineup.
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker
My fellow Americans, you have a choice. You deserve better. America deserves better. The well-connected in Washington are lining up behind Hillary Clinton, because she is one of them. They want more of the same.
Donald Trump is standing with the American people.
We want a leader who is not afraid to take on the mess in Washington.
We believe that there is a better way forward.
As Republicans, we believe in an America where everyone can get the education and training that they need to succeed in college, career, and life; one where Washington doesn’t deepen dependency, but rather helps create genuine opportunity.
Why? Because America deserves better.
We believe in a country where people can achieve, maintain, and enjoy their piece of the American Dream – without the government standing in the way.
Why? Because America deserves better.
We believe in a country where we take the threat of terrorism seriously. We name it for what it is: Radical Islamic Terrorism.
And we do everything in our power to eliminate it – to ensure our safety.
Why? Because America deserves better.
We believe in a country where it is a solemn responsibility to deliver to our troops the support and tools they need to achieve victory and then provide them with the health care and respect they’ve earned when they return home.
Why? Because America deserves better.
And while we’re at it, we believe in a country where those who honorably serve in law enforcement – the people who put their lives on the line for us – are not just respected – they are revered.
Why? Because America deserves better.
We believe in a country where power is taken back from Washington and returned home to state and local governments – where it is more effective, more efficient and more accountable to the people.
Why? Because America deserves better.
We believe in a country where freedom and personal success do not come from the clumsy hand of government, but rather the dignity that comes from hard work.
Why? Because America deserves better.
The simple truth is: liberal Washington insiders created these problems. And Hillary Clinton is the ultimate liberal Washington insider. If she were any more on the “inside,” she’d be in prison.
America deserves better than Hillary Clinton.
That is why we need to support Donald Trump and Mike Pence for President and Vice President.
Last August, I said that any of the Republicans running would be better than Hillary Clinton. I meant it then, and I mean it now. So let me be clear: a vote for anyone other than Donald Trump in November is a vote for Hillary Clinton.
Make no mistake: we can’t wait four more years and “get ‘em next time.” The consequences are too great. After hearing the FBI Director’s recent comments, I wouldn’t even give Hillary Clinton the password to my iPhone – let alone access to classified information. This isn’t just another Clinton scandal, Hillary’s scandal put our national security at risk and that makes her unfit to be President.
It’s time to tell Hillary: enough is enough. No more double standards for the Clintons.
Why? Because America deserves better.
Thankfully, Republicans are offering a better way forward.
It’s working right here in Ohio and in Florida, New Mexico, North Carolina and South Carolina. And even in Massachusetts and Maryland.
Republican leadership works. I see it first hand as it’s working in Wisconsin.
In 2010, we were tired of high unemployment, budget deficits, stifling taxes, and rising college tuition.
Most of all, we were tired of the big government union bosses running our state and local governments. We had enough. So we did something about it. We took back power from the big government special interests and returned it firmly into the hands of the hard-working taxpayers. In turn, the big government special interests – and their cronies in Washington – helped organize more than 100,000 protestors who occupied our state Capitol. They tried to intimidate us with threats and mobs, but we didn’t back down. And we won.
Then, they spent tens of millions of dollars to try and defeat us in a recall election, but we didn’t back down. And we won.
Three times they came at us. Three times we won.
We won because our common sense reforms worked. Today, more people are employed in Wisconsin than ever before, our budget is balanced and responsible, taxes are down for working families and seniors; and college tuition is frozen for four years in a row.
If conservative reforms can work in a blue state like mine, they can work anywhere in the country. You see, it wasn’t too late for Wisconsin and it’s not too late for America. If
you’ve had enough of Washington’s brokenness, wastefulness, empty promises and arrogance, join us. Help us elect Republicans to office – from the courthouse to the statehouse to the White House.
You have a choice. You decide. You deserve better. Because America deserves better.
Florida Governor Rick Scott
My name is Rick Scott, Governor of the great state of Florida.
Before I begin tonight, I want to express my gratitude to everyone who has kept us in their prayers after the horrific and hate-filled terrorist attack in Orlando a month ago. We have received an outpouring of support and love from Americans everywhere. The American people do stick up for each other. On behalf of the state of Florida: thank you, thank you, thank you!
I’m old enough to remember when terrorism was something that happened in foreign countries. Not today. How many more times does the evil of radical Islamic terrorism have to occur, before the President of the United States will muster the courage to face the truth? How many more “Orlandos,” “San Bernadinos,” or “Ft. Hoods” will happen until President Obama decides to be honest? I cried with the grieving moms and dads and brothers and sisters of the 49 people slaughtered by an ISIS-inspired terrorist. This war is real. It is here in America. And the next President must destroy this evil.
Donald Trump is the man for that job.
I met Donald about 20 years ago, before either of us ever ran for office. Let me tell you why this is the time for Donald to be President. A lot of politicians like to give speeches where they say “we are at a crossroads.” But that’s not really where we are. Today, America is in terrible world-record-high debt, our economy is not growing, our jobs are going overseas, we’ve allowed our military to decay, and we project weakness on the international stage. Washington grows while the rest of America struggles. The Democrats have not led us to a crossroads, they have led us to a cliff.
I know that some have reservations about my friend Donald Trump. Perhaps he’s sometimes not polite. He can be a little rough. And he may be too direct. But, this election is not actually about Donald Trump, or Hillary Clinton. In fact, this election is not about you or me either. This election is about the very survival of the American Dream.
It’s time for all Americans to put down the partisan banners, vote for the survival of the greatest country in the world, and do what is right for our country – Vote for Donald Trump!
Finally, I have some great news. This is the time America has been waiting for. This year, we get to fire the politicians! And who better to let the politicians in Washington know “you’re fired” than Donald Trump?
We need a president who is politically incorrect and will tell it like it is. We need a President who isn’t afraid of Washington. We need a President who doesn’t believe government is the answer to every problem. We need a President who recognizes that great countries have borders. We need a President who will bring American jobs back to America. We need a President who is not afraid to say “radical Islamic terrorism.” And we need a President who will wipe ISIS off the face of the earth.
And on every one of these measures Hillary Clinton fails. America is worth fighting for. Let’s make America great again. Let’s elect Donald Trump the next President of the United States.
Laura Ingraham, Radio Host
You may know me from TV and radio, but my kids know me by my most important name, Mom. I’m a single mother of three adopted children. I’m here tonight supporting Donald Trump because like most Americans, I refuse to leave them a country that is worse off than the one my parents left me.
My grandparents were Polish immigrants. My parents grew up in Depression Era New England. My dad enlisted in the Navy in WWII. My mom waited tables until she was 73. My dad worked at his car wash. They flew the flag at our house and not just on the 4th of July. They scrimped and saved. My mother made my clothes, and wore the same winter coat for 40 years. Any extra money went into the bank for our education. We learned the dignity found in a job well done. My brothers picked tobacco and delivered newspapers. I picked blueberries and raked lawns.
You see, my parents didn’t believe there were jobs Americans wouldn’t do. In the early ‘70s, watching the news with my mother, I asked her why people were burning the American flag. She answered: “Because their parents didn’t teach them about respect.”
Respect. We see it in decline once again. The people don’t respect the government. The government doesn’t respect the people, not even our veterans. Politicians don’t respect the Constitution. Many don’t respect the life of the infant in the womb, or the elderly who languish alone. Others don’t respect the police, who risk their lives every day to protect us. Many in public office don’t enforce or respect the rule of law. Isn’t that right, Mrs. Clinton? Too many citizens and non-citizens don’t respect our laws either. And many of our allies don’t respect us anymore.
It’s sad to see this happen to the country we love. This is our home. It belongs to us, our children and our grandchildren. We deserve better and we can do better. Like us, Donald Trump understands that we must turn this around and restore respect across all levels of society. Unlike us, Hillary Clinton believes the status quo is just fine because she helped create it.
Donald Trump knows that a nation without borders is not a nation at all. Hillary Clinton doesn’t believe in borders. Donald Trump knows that a country must put the interests of its own people first. Hillary Clinton thinks that America is just another nation in a global order. Donald Trump understands that America’s greatness comes from her people, her freedom. Hillary Clinton believes greatness can only be found in an ever-growing government that only Her Majesty rules. She believes that there’s a government solution to every problem. No, Hillary, you’re the problem. And Donald Trump is the solution.
We were in a mess back in 1979, too. Only then it was leisure suits instead of pants suits. Many believed America’s time was up. But then Ronald Reagan arrived just in time to restore our national confidence, our economy and our military.
Donald Trump will do the same. He has pledged to work tirelessly to get our country back on track. We should all, even all you boys with wounded feelings and bruised egos, pledge to support Donald Trump now. This is the most important election since 1980. We see stagnating wages, skyrocketing healthcare costs, doubling of the debt, the threat of ISIS, the rise of China. And the Democrats’ answer is to nominate someone who helped orchestrate the decline? It has to be a cruel joke.
I don’t want to sit around and tell my kids stories about how great America used to be. Do you? We never give up. We rise to challenges. We fight and win. We’re Americans. We need a president who believes in the Constitution and who will fight for us and with us.
To all my friends in the press, you know in your heart why Donald Trump won the nomination. It’s because he dared to call out the phonies, the frauds, and the corruption that have all gone unexposed, and that you failed to challenge for far too long. Donald Trump respects us enough to tell us the hard truths about what has happened to our country – on issues like immigration, trade, and our diminished status around the world – even in the face of unfair criticism and sheer hatred.
They had their chance. Now, it’s our chance. Let’s reject the politics of division. Let’s defeat the Clinton Machine. Let’s send the consultants and lobbyists packing. Let’s give the power back to the people. And let’s elect Donald Trump President of the United Sates.
Phil Ruffin, Businessman
I’ve known Donald Trump as a friend and a business partner for over 20 years. You can’t be my friend and my business partner for long if you’re not honest with me, and good to your word. I can tell you Donald Trump is both.
He’s been an innovator and an entrepreneur: no one in our business works harder, or smarter, than he does. Professionally I have seen time and again how he can see what others cannot, and how he has taken properties others took a pass on and made something incredible out of them.
As a result of his vision and hard work he has put tens of thousands of our fellow Americans to work, created amazing spaces and places, and made money for himself, and his partners. He has done this in many of our nation’s greatest cities such as: Chicago, New York, Miami, and Las Vegas.
Let me tell you about one of the deals we did together. About ten years ago, he and I developed Trump International Hotel in Las Vegas. As with so many Trump properties, this has innovative design, and attention to detail. Buyers liked it, and it seemed it would be another tremendous success: it was under budget and on time, however, in 2008 the recession hit, and the banks would not finance any additional units. This left us with about 75 percent unsold, and more than a half billion dollars in debt. Ninety-nine percent of people and investors would have walked away: Donald would not give up.
He is a fighter, and he saw its incredible potential.
I believed in him, and for three tough years we worked together to keep it afloat. Through it all, Donald always paid his bills promptly, with no discounts.
Due to Donald’s persistence and faith, and my faith in him, we turned it around. Today it has become a huge success.
This is just one example.
I have seen him do this time and time again.
He has put money on the line, both his and mine. He is a developer. He is an entrepreneur. He is an innovator. And he is a leader.
He now wants to turn around Washington. When he first told me he was going to run for President, I told him I did not think it was a good idea.
I asked him why he wanted to do this, and he simply replied, “I love America.
Our system is broken, and I am going to fix it.”
This is the Donald I know, and I know what America needs now: a fighter and an innovator.
He sees the potential and he knows what our great country can be if we come together.
Donald Trump will fix what is broken in Washington, and Make America Great Again, and you can bet on that.
Pam Bondi, Attorney General of Florida
November 8th is a day of reckoning for all those who have abused their power.
It is the day that we the people will take back our government.
From Washington bureaucrats playing doctor with our health care.
To a President who’s been playing fast and loose with our constitutional rights and Russian roulette with our borders.
November 8th, is when America feels safe again, when America wins again.
Because winning this election means reclaiming something to which I’ve dedicated my entire career: the rule of law.
Laws that make our neighborhoods safe, and our economy strong. Laws that apply equally to everyone.
Laws that back our law enforcement, now more than ever, because they have our backs.
But today, these laws are under siege by a President determined to ignore laws he doesn’t like, and by a former Secretary of State who believes the laws don’t apply to her.
By the way, she also deserves no security clearance. This lawlessness must stop.
Donald Trump will stop it.
He’ll roll back Obama’s unconstitutional executive orders.
He’ll enforce immigration laws to keep us safe, while allowing legal immigrants to bless this nation with their talents and their dreams. He’ll take control of our borders, because we must stop the flow of cocaine and heroin coming into our country and killing our kids.
Then there’s this. Hillary believes our enemies deserve our respect and empathy. Donald Trump believes terrorists deserve to die.
Hillary will stack the Supreme Court with liberal justices who will allow government to continue its rampage against our individual rights, with utter contempt for our Second Amendment.
I know Donald. He will appoint conservative justices who will defend, rather than rewrite, our Constitution.
Are you ready to send ISIS a message that we’re really coming after them?
When Donald Trump is President, he will.
On November 8th, remember this:
If you believe in limited government…
If you believe in our historic constitutional rights…
If you believe in the rule of law…
If you believe it’s time for America to start acting like America again…
There is only one choice in this election: Donald Trump.
America’s for Trump.
And so am I.
Eileen Collins, Astronaut (retired)
From the moment the first Pilgrims arrived on our shores, Americans have been asking, “what’s next?” We are a nation built by the passion of people who weren’t afraid to do something first, to step into the unknown, and pave our own way forward. We are a nation of explorers.
In 1961, President Kennedy issued a challenge to America: to land a man on the moon and return him safely to Earth. 47 years ago on this very day, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin answered that call and walked on the moon. They took with them an American flag and a plaque bearing the inscription: “here men from the planet Earth first set foot upon the Moon July 1969. We came in peace for all mankind.”
We landed on the moon to fulfill a leadership challenge and to explore. Exploration leads to innovation and discovery. Our successful robotic missions to Mars, Jupiter, and Pluto have provided valuable new information about our own planet.
But in 2011, the space shuttle program ended. The last time the US launched our own astronauts from our own soil was over 5 years ago. We must do better than that!
Countries that are strong explore, invent, and discover to remain resilient in a changing world. I am honored to have played a role in our nation’s heritage of explorers as the first woman to command a space shuttle mission, joining the ranks of those that have fought to lead the way.
We are all so proud of our Apollo program that put our astronauts on the Moon: first, in peace, for all mankind. Nations that lead on the frontier, lead in the world. We need that visionary leadership again. Leadership that will inspire the next generation to have that same passion.
We need leadership that will challenge every American to ask, “What’s next?” We need leadership that will make America’s space program first again. We need leadership that will make America first again. That leader is Donald Trump.
Thank you and God bless the United States of America!
Michelle Van Etten, Small Business Owner
I was born an entrepreneur, by six years old I knew it.
My dream was to be a circus performer so I decided to have a circus at my house. I made tickets, sold them door to door, I even dressed my baby brother as a clown and taught my dog new tricks. I was ready for my big day.
When people started arriving, my parents had no idea about the circus taking place. Embarrassed, they refunded money to my guests and apologized. I was so upset. Afterwards my dad sat me down and told me any dream you have is possible as long as you’re willing to do the work it takes to get the job done. Then he added, “after you go to college.”
But I couldn’t wait. Taking my dad’s advice, I partnered with the neighborhood kids to be part of my circus, and we charged our parents to watch the show. We continued to have our Circus show for over a year. My dad told me I earned great candy money that year!
Fast forward 26 years. Planning for my 20th high school reunion, I decided to check out the girls I went to school with. What I noticed was that my girlfriends looked like Barbies and drove BMWs. I was 30 pounds overweight, a stay at home mom and drove a minivan.
I decided I needed a change. I began to dream again. I took a leap of faith and started my own network marketing business from home. Like many people who pursue a dream, I had to learn how to fail forward and never quit.
I also had to become the type of person I wanted in my business. Within just two years, my husband was able to retire from 28 years at DOD. Jim Van Etten now homeschools our kids because we choose not to subject them to Common Core.
I opened a fashion studio called MV House of Style in Brandon, Florida. Today I run a thriving multi-faceted business. I am living the American Dream.
But that dream is in jeopardy. My fear is that the next generation – the millennial – who over half of them have an entrepreneurial spirt and want to be their own boss – will not be able to because of the liberal policies that have been implemented over the past eight years.
These policies – including higher taxes and excessive regulations – are crushing the American Dream.
Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy.
We need these entrepreneurs.
We live in the land of opportunity.
We need to protect the American Dream above all else.
Are we willing to let government bureaucrats and liberal policies destroy the innovative spirit?
If not, then we have to take action.
We need a president who is businessman not a Hillary-crat.
Who understands small businesses are the backbone of America. Who will not raise taxes.
Who will repeal Obamacare so small businesses can start offering insurance to their employees again.
Who will end Common Core and protect our children’s education. Who will encourage creativity and innovation. Who will bring manufacturing back to America. Who will make America great and safe again.
There is only one man capable of this juggling act. Only one man who can take the circus we’ve inherited from the last eight years and serve as the ultimate ringmaster.
There is only one man who can preserve and protect the American Dream for future generations.
That man is Donald Trump. Thank you.
State Senator Ralph Alvarado, Jr. (Kentucky)
From the great Commonwealth of Kentucky, the home of horses, bourbon, coal, bluegrass, and the finest people on earth, allow me to express my sincerest appreciation and gratitude for the privilege of addressing this assembly.
I am proud to stand before you tonight as the first Hispanic member ever elected to the Kentucky General Assembly. But, the road here was not an easy one. Three failed political runs were lonely at times and full of adversity. But, with a lot of determination, grit, and hard work, I triumphed.
Everything I am and have achieved, I owe to God and my parents. My father was a proud legal immigrant from Costa Rica, my mother from Argentina. Being the son of immigrants, I saw firsthand their sacrifice to provide our family a better life.
I watched their struggle in mastering a second language and their strong and quiet commitment to hard work. We didn’t have the luxuries that other families had, but what my parents did give me was family structure, discipline, support, high personal expectations, love and faith in God. They were Hispanic, they were Americans and they were very proud of being both.
They understood the value of preserving our culture and our language, but also the value of an education and instilling a pride and love for our country.
Like most immigrants, they understood that their sacrifice would not provide them immediate success, but the reward would be in the opportunity and success of their children and grandchildren.
But, this story is not unique to my family; it is the story of many legal Latino immigrants who come to America.
At their core, Hispanics believe what Republicans believe: traditional family values, church, faith in God, the dignity of work, and the opportunity for self-sufficiency that comes from a free society and a limited government.
They have simple dreams that might seem mundane to the average American, but would sound familiar to our founding fathers and their core principles.
Some flee corrupt government leaders for the dream of liberty and freedom. Some flee crime and anarchy for the dream of safer communities for their families.
Some flee hunger and despair for the dream of opportunity, entrepreneurship, and abundance.
But, all leave their homelands for the dream of America – the place where if you work hard, study hard, and obey our laws, you can accomplish anything.
Over the past eight years, our President and his apprentice, Hillary Clinton, have talked about that American dream, but they have absolutely no idea how to protect it, foster it, or expand it.
Today, we have a President who has not only failed to end racial tension, he has made us more divided than ever.
Today, we have a President who is itching to restrict our fundamental rights, such as religious liberty, the right to bear arms, and free speech.
Today, we have a President who has rejected honesty and transparency, lying to the American people over and over again: from Obamacare to the promise of immigration reform to Fast and Furious to phone record spying to an IRS enemies list to green energy crony bankruptcies to Benghazi – to the VA scandal, to the Iran nuclear deal, the list goes on and on.
And, with Hillary Clinton, this eight year nightmare will get far, far worse.
Americans face an important decision. Do we want someone who is brutally honest (perhaps to a fault) or do we want someone who is brutally dishonest? It is not a decision about America moving left or right, but it is a decision about America going up or down.
By protecting the American dream, we can make America first again.
There is only one candidate who will protect it for our current and future generations.
That candidate is Donald Trump.
And now a message for my Latino friends:
A mis hermanos hispanos: nuestras familias se fugaron le paises llenos de corrupcion y politicos mentirosos.
Por favor, no permitan que esa miseria occura en este pais también. Vivimos en una isla de libertad y opportunidad.
Voten conmigo. Voten Republicano.
Y voten for Donald Trump.
Hillary Clinton, you failed the Hispanic community, and you don’t deserve our vote.
God bless this convention and God bless this country.
Dr. Darrell C. Scott, Senior Pastor and Co-Founder of New Spirit Revival Center Ministries
I first met Donald Trump several years ago. He said he was very troubled about the direction our country was heading in. I listened to his vision, and I understood deeply, and shared many concerns he expressed. In the many times we have met since, we have spoken about the economy, race relations, immigration, jobs, urban renovation and revitalization, the military, and other issues that are critical to our nation’s wellbeing.
The truth is Donald Trump is a conservative father and grandfather who feels his best days are in front, not behind him. Despite his accomplishments, he still feels a void, a need to serve his country and his fellow Americans.
The truth is, the Democratic Party has failed us: at home, our growth is lethargic and our debt deeper; we are spiritually empty; and we are more divided now than ever before. Abroad we are neither respected nor feared by our adversaries, and our friends increasingly cannot count on us. This is their legacy.
We need to make a sharp turn. We need to put into practice the great ideals and principles our country was founded on, and which are the source of strength that has made us great.
This is in our interest and the world’s because the greater America is, the greater the entire world becomes. While some call Donald Trump a populist, I call him a patriot. That’s because by definition a patriot is one who loves their country, supports its authority and its interests. Many liberals are embarrassed to use this word.
Many believe we are a nation just like any other: we know we are not a nation like any other, and as Republicans we are unreservedly proud to be Americans and proud of our patriots!
America is a melting pot, a country of diversity: and we stand poised to make history: by standing together as Americans, by standing together as one. We are here as Americans regardless of race, creed, or color. We are here as those who hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, and that we are endowed by our creator with certain inalienable rights: among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.
Donald Trump will rebuild the broken trust that now exists between our citizens and our government which over the last eight years has brought the rhetoric of hope, but the reality of higher minority unemployment, crime, drug use, with more civil unrest and national distress.
This election is one of the most crucial elections in American history!
Donald Trump has played for big stakes and is a master negotiator and dealmaker.
He knows that for all the sharp elbows and words that the art of the deal is bringing people together, to unify, to get to yes.
That means problem solving, finding common ground, and moving forward. He has done that for himself for over 30 years: he now wants to take that experience to get the best deal for America and for all Americans.
I believe nothing will prevent Donald Trump from doing everything in his power to create an America that everyone can be proud of.
He believes, as do you and as I do, that we can become great again, and we can become strong again, if we have strong leadership. And I can think of no stronger leader who will place their left hand on a Bible that they believe in, raise their right hand and solemnly swear to faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and to the best of his ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States of America than Donald J. Trump.
God bless Donald Trump, God Bless You, and God Bless America!
Harold Hamm, Continental Resources
Thank you. It’s good to be in Cleveland.
Four years ago, Donald Trump asked me to tell him about the American Energy Renaissance and how we had transformed the North Dakota Bakken into the largest U.S. oil discovery ever. I told him it was moving America from energy scarcity to abundance, would change the world forever, and could power America to greatness once again. He wrote that down. Donald Trump got it.
President Trump will fuel America’s future and become the first president to achieve American energy independence! President Obama chose not to get it and has tried to destroy this renaissance and all of its benefits. Instead, he turned on Iranian oil, gave them the bomb, billions of dollars, and vilified Israel. Why would he do that?
Obama imposed punitive regulations to stop this renaissance.
In his Administration’s very own words, they want to “crucify” America’s oil and natural gas producers. Hillary Clinton promises more of the same!
America has two distinct choices.
Our nation should embrace energy independence, not eliminate it.
Hillary Clinton would eliminate fossil fuel development in America, kill jobs, drive up gasoline prices and increase oil imports from our enemies. President Trump will release America’s pent-up energy potential, get rid of foreign oil, trash punitive regulations, create millions of jobs, and develop our most strategic geopolitical weapon… crude oil.
Despite Obama’s attacks, foreign oil imports have plummeted by 65%. America now has more oil reserves than Saudi Arabia or Russia. We can double U.S. oil production again and put America in a global league of its own.
Donald Trump will restore America’s rightful place as the energy leader of the world!
Every time we can’t drill a well in America, terrorism is being funded! Orlando brought this home once again. It’s been 15 years since 9/11. We can’t ignore this any longer. Climate change isn’t our biggest problem – it’s Islamic terrorism! Every onerous regulation puts American lives at risk. Developing America’s own oil supply is a matter of national security. Critics may say I’m just a well-to-do supporter of Donald Trump. They don’t know about the 13th child of sharecroppers who was inspired by Vo-Ag teacher Jim Hunter.
I couldn’t start school before the first snow or Christmas – whichever came first – because I was pulling cotton to feed our family. My first memories are picking cotton barefoot. I’m standing here tonight because the American dream was alive and well when I struck out on my own at 20 years old with nothing but a truck, a co-signed note and a phone!
Thank God we have a clear choice today.
Donald Trump and Mike Pence will restore the American Dream for the next would-be visionary from small-town America and make America Great Again! God Bless America!
U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas)
Thank you. Heidi and I are honored to join you here in Cleveland, where Lebron James just led an incredible comeback victory. I’m convinced America is going to come back too.
I congratulate Donald Trump on winning the nomination last night.
Conventions are times of excitement. But given the events of the last few weeks, I hope you’ll allow me a moment to talk to you about what’s really at stake.
Just two weeks ago, a nine-year-old girl named Caroline was having a carefree Texas summer – swimming in the pool, playing with friends, doing all the things a happy child might do.
Like most children, she took for granted the love she received from her mom, Heidi, and her dad, a police sergeant named Michael Smith. That is, until he became one of the five police officers gunned down in Dallas.
The day her father was murdered, Caroline gave him a hug and kiss as he left for work. But as they parted, her dad asked her something he hadn’t asked before:
“What if this is the last time you ever kiss or hug me?’”
Later, as she thought of her fallen father, and that last heartbreaking hug, Caroline broke down in tears. How could anything ever be OK again?
Michael Smith was a former Army ranger who spent three decades with the Dallas Police Department. I have no idea who he voted for in the last election, or what he thought about this one. But his life was a testament to devotion. He protected the very protestors who mocked him because he loved his country and his fellow man. His work gave new meaning to that line from literature, “To die of love is to live by it.”
As I thought about what I wanted to say tonight, Michael Smith’s story weighed on my heart. Maybe that’s because his daughter, Caroline, is about the same age as my eldest daughter and happens to share the same name. Maybe it’s because I saw a video of that dear, sweet child choking back sobs as she remembered her daddy’s last question to her. Maybe it’s because we live in a world where so many others have had their lives destroyed by evil, in places like Orlando and Paris and Nice and Baton Rouge. Maybe it is because of the simple question itself:
What if this, right now, is our last time? Our last moment to do something for our families and our country?
Did we live up to our values? Did we do all we could?
That’s really what elections should be about. That’s why you and millions like you devoted so much time and sacrifice to this campaign.
We’re fighting, not for one particular candidate or one campaign, but because
each of us wants to be able to tell our kids and grandkids, our own Carolines, that we did our best for their future, and for our country.
America is more than just a land mass between two oceans. America is an idea, a simple yet powerful idea: freedom matters.
For much of human history, government power has been the unavoidable constant in life – government decrees, and the people obey.
Not here. We have no king or queen. No dictator. We the People constrain government.
Our nation is exceptional because it was built on the five most powerful words in the English language: I want to be free.
Never has that message been more needed than today.
We stand here tonight a nation divided. Partisan rancor, anger, even hatred are tearing America apart.
And citizens are furious—rightly furious—at a political establishment that cynically breaks its promises and ignores the will of the people.
We have to do better. We owe our fallen heroes more than that.
Of course, Obama and Clinton will tell you that they also care about our children’s future. And I want to believe them. But there is a profound difference in our two parties’ visions for the future.
Theirs is the party that thinks ISIS is a “JV team,” that responds to the death of Americans at Benghazi by asking, “What difference does it make?” That thinks
it’s possible to make a deal with Iran, which celebrates as holidays “Death to America Day” and “Death to Israel Day.”
My friends, this is madness.
President Obama is a man who does everything backwards – he wants to close Guantanamo Bay and open up our borders, he exports jobs and imports terrorists.
Enough is enough.
There is a better vision for our future: A return to freedom.
On education, your freedom to choose your child’s education, even if you aren’t as rich as Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama.
On healthcare, your freedom to choose your own doctor, without Obamacare.
On taxes, your freedom to provide for your family without the IRS beating down your door.
The Internet? Keep it free from taxes, free from regulation. And don’t give it away to Russia and China.
Freedom means free speech, not politically correct safe spaces.
Freedom means religious freedom, whether you are Christian or Jew, Muslim or atheist. Gay or straight, the Bill of Rights protects the rights of all of us to live according to our conscience.
Freedom means the right to keep and bear arms, and protect your family.
Freedom means Supreme Court Justices who don’t dictate policy, but instead follow the Constitution.
And freedom means recognizing that our Constitution allows states to choose policies that reflect local values. Colorado may decide something different than Texas. New York different than Iowa. Diversity. That’s the way it’s supposed to be. If not, what’s the point of having states to begin with?
Hillary Clinton believes government should make virtually every choice in your life. Education, healthcare, marriage, speech – all dictated out of Washington.
But something powerful is happening. We’ve seen it in both parties. We’ve seen it in the United Kingdom’s unprecedented Brexit vote to leave the European Union.
Voters are overwhelmingly rejecting big government. That’s a profound victory.
People are fed up with politicians who don’t listen to them, fed up with a corrupt system that benefits the elites, instead of working men and women.
We deserve an immigration system that puts America first. And yes, builds a wall to keep us safe.
That stops admitting ISIS terrorists as refugees.
We deserve trade policies that put the interests of American farmers and manufacturing jobs over the global interests funding the lobbyists.
And if we choose freedom, our future will be brighter.
Freedom will bring back jobs, raise wages.
Freedom will lift people out of dependency, to the dignity of work.
We can do this. 47 years ago today, America put a man on the moon. That’s the power of freedom.
Our party was founded to defeat slavery. Abraham Lincoln, the first Republican president, signed the Emancipation Proclamation.
We passed the Civil Rights Act, and fought to eliminate Jim Crow laws.
Those were fights for freedom, and so is this.
Sergeant Michael Smith stood up to protect our freedom.
So do our soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines fighting radical Islamic terrorism.
So did the family of Alton Sterling, who bravely called to end the violence.
So did the families of those murdered at the Charleston Emanuel AME church, who forgave that hateful, bigoted murderer.
And so can we.
We deserve leaders who stand for principle. Unite us all behind shared values. Cast aside anger for love. That is the standard we should expect, from everybody.
And to those listening, please, don’t stay home in November. Stand, and speak, and vote your conscience, vote for candidates up and down the ticket who you trust to defend our freedom and to be faithful to the Constitution.
It’s love of freedom that has allowed millions to achieve their dreams. Like my Mom, the first in her family to go to college, and my Dad, who fled prison and torture in Cuba, coming to Texas with just $100 sewn into his underwear.
And it is love that I hope will bring comfort to a grieving 9-year-old girl in Dallas – and, God willing, propel her to move forward, and dream, and soar . . . and make her daddy proud.
We must make the most of our moment – to fight for freedom, to protect our God-given rights, even of those with whom we don’t agree, so that when we are old and gray . . . and our work is done . . . and we give those we love one final kiss goodbye . . . we will be able to say, “Freedom matters, and I was part of something beautiful.”
Thank you. And may God bless the United States of America.
Newt Gingrich, Former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives
Thank you for that very generous welcome. And thank you, Callista. You know, she makes documentary films, and writes a best-selling children’s series on American history. In addition, she sings in the Basilica Choir, and plays the French horn in the Fairfax Band. I am amazed at her achievements.
Tonight I want to speak about a subject that has dominated my thinking for decades: How do we keep America safe?
Keeping America safe is the first responsibility of the American president. There have been many fascinating things to watch about the extraordinary,
historic rise of Donald Trump.
But the most significant has been Donald Trump’s courage to tell some important truths about our national security.
— We are at War.
— We are at War with Radical Islamists.
— They are determined to kill us.
— They are stronger than we admit
— And are greater in number than we admit.
— And there is NO substitute for victory.
In contrast to Donald Trump, our national security and foreign policy elites, led by Hillary Clinton, are incapable of speaking with such honesty.
While THEY lie about the threat, WE need to tell the truth about the danger.
If our enemies had their way, not a single woman in this room could define her future.
If our enemies had their way, not a single Jew or Christian in this room would be alive unless they agreed to submit.
If our enemies had their way, gays, lesbians and transgender citizens would be put to death as they are today in the Islamic State and Iran.
If our enemies had their way, every person on earth would be subject to conversion by the sword and to a cruel and violent system of laws.
There would be no individual liberty. There would be no equality.
There would be no freedom. If you doubt we are at war…
If you doubt that this threat is as real as I say… Let me refresh your memory:
On Monday, an Afghan refugee in Germany used an axe and knives to slash and wound train passengers while shouting “Allahu Akbar.”
Last week, ISIS claimed responsibility after a Tunisian man drove a cargo truck into crowd in Nice, France. He murdered 84 people, including at least 10 children and three Americans, and injured over 300 others.
Two weeks ago, more than 300 people were killed and more than 200 were wounded in bombing attacks in Baghdad.
Two days before that, radical Islamists in Bangladesh killed 20 hostages, including 3 American college students.
A few days before that, at the Istanbul airport in Turkey, ISIS attackers armed with guns and bombs killed 44 people and injured a few hundred more.
Last month, a radical Islamist in Paris stalked a French police officer to his home, where he murdered the officer and tortured his wife to death in front of their three-year-old son, while streaming it all on social media.
He was pondering whether to kill the three-year-old when he was killed by police.
Two days before that, an attacker pledging allegiance to ISIS killed 49 people in an Orlando nightclub and wounded dozens more.
All this in JUST the past 37 days.
We risk growing numb to these accumulating atrocities.
One recent analysis estimated that since January of 2015, some 30,000 people have been killed at the hands of terrorists.
Donald Trump is right.
We are at war with radical Islamists, we are losing the war, and we must change course to win the war.
Let me be very clear, because I know the news media will do their best to distort this.
We have nothing to fear from the vast majority of Muslimsin the United States, or around the world.
The vast majority are peaceful. They are often the victims of the violence themselves.
They are people we would be happy to have as our friends and neighbors.
The challenge is, when even a small percentage of a billion, six hundred million people support violence against those who disagree with them, that is still a giant recruiting base.
For example, Pew Research finds that just 9 percent of Muslims in Pakistan support ISIS.
Unfortunately, that 9 percent is 16 million people. And that’s just one country.
So the truth is, although we are losing the war with radical Islamists, we have been very lucky.
The danger we face is much worse than the horrors that happened in Germany on New Year’s Eve, when 2,000 women were assaulted.
It’s worse than what’s happening in France, where there are stabbings of Jews in the streets and the intelligence chief warned recently that Europe is QUOTE “on the brink of civil war.”
It’s worse than what’s happening in Israel, where average citizens fear for their lives whenever they leave their homes.
The danger is even worse than September 11th, when 19 hijackers murdered almost 3,000 Americans.
No. The worst case scenario is losing an American city to terrorists armed with weapons of mass destruction.
Instead of losing 3,000 people in one morning, we could lose more than 300,000.
Instead of losing 2 great buildings, we could lose block after block after block to a nuclear event.
That’s not just my view. Back in January of 2001, the Hart Rudman Commission warned that terrorists QUOTE, “will acquire weapons of mass destruction…and some will use them.
Americans will likely die on American soil, possibly in large numbers.” 15 years later, the dangers are even greater.
In a world where Pakistan has nuclear weapons… where North Korea has nuclear weapons…
and where IRAN–the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism–is close to having nuclear weapons…this, a catastrophic attack on innocent Americans, is a very real threat.
Which brings us to the heart of the matter.
We are sleepwalking through history as though this is all about politics. It is not.
It is about our safety and our survival as a country.
And this is why every American should be terrified at the prospect of a Hillary Clinton presidency.
If Hillary is elected, she will keep in place the people and the systems that lie to us every single day about this threat.
We know she will do this because as Secretary of State, she has been right at the center of this dishonesty.
We know this administration and its allies lied to us about the Iran nuclear deal.
We know it because they openly bragged about it to the New York Times.
We know that Hillary Clinton lied to us knowingly about the terror attack on our Benghazi consulate on September 11, 2012.
We know that Hillary Clinton and President Obama lie to the American people when they say they can safely screen the Syrian refugees. They cannot. And yet Hillary wants to increase the number by 500 percent.
So when you hear about Hillary’s dishonesty, or the emails, or taking millions from the Saudis and other Middle Eastern dictatorships–remember: this is NOT about politics.
The cost of Hillary’s dishonesty could be the loss of America as we know it. The first step forward to safety is electing a leader who will be truthful with the
American people about the realities we face.
Only then will we understand, support, and demand the strategies required to confront this threat.
And because safety and security are the preconditions for our freedom and prosperity, it is also the first step toward rebuilding the America we love.
Donald Trump understands this.
And that’s why he WILL rebuild our military–because he knows that a strong military is the best way to ensure peace.
Donald Trump WILL secure our borders–because there is no such thing as a nation without a border.
Donald Trump WILL enforce our immigration laws. He will end the policy of deliberate non-enforcement and will end the abuse of our visa programs–to protect American workers, and their wages.
Donald Trump WILL take care of our veterans by holding bureaucrats at the Veterans Administration accountable.
He WILL fire those responsible for the waiting lists, and WILL give veterans more choices about their care.
With Donald Trump’s leadership, no bureaucrat will get between a veterans and their doctor.
Donald Trump WILL get America building again.
He will blow apart the ridiculous regulations and requirements that drive up infrastructure costs and drag out the timeline to get anything built.
The Trump Infrastructure program WILL make us once again the most competitive economy in the world.
Donald Trump WILL rebuild our education system, and give EVERY PARENT of EVERY income and EVERY ethnic background a choice about where their children go to school.
And Donald Trump will help us rebuild our communities one life and one family at a time. Here again, the first step is safety– the basis for strong families, and good jobs, and vibrant neighborhoods.
That means restoring law and order.
Donald Trump will show ZERO tolerance for people calling for the death of police officers.
Think about this. If anyone publicly threatens the life of the President of the United States, the Secret Service is on them in an instant.
Our law enforcement officers deserve the same respect.
And OF COURSE, if individual officers are found to have violated someone’s rights, they must be held accountable under the law.
America is BASED on the rule of law.
We are one nation, under God, with liberty and justice for ALL.
That is what has allowed us to absorb more people from more backgrounds than any nation in history.
Nobody is above the law.
And nobody is too small to deserve its protection.
Donald Trump won our party’s nomination because he is willing to tell the truth about the things that matter most.
He has a GREAT running mate in Mike Pence.
They will put our safety first, and they will defend America first. We can be proud to stand with them.
So tonight, the challenge for everyone in this hall, and everyone–Republican, Democrat, or Independent–who is watching at home and knows we cannot continue on our current course…
…Is to rise above our factions, and rise above the politics we’ve inherited; to ignore the lies of the news media and the old order; to reject the suicidal DISHONESTY of Hillary Clinton and her establishment allies; and to be proud to stand with Donald Trump and Mike Pence for what we know is true:
We CAN make America safe again; We CAN make America work again; We CAN make America first again;
And together, we CAN make America great again — for ALL Americans. Thank you and God Bless the United States of America.