Education March 27, 2018: Ivy League colleges Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Brown and Dartmouth see record number of applications for Class of 2022 

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EDUCATION

Ivy League colleges Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Brown and Dartmouth see record number of applications for Class of 2022

By Bonnie K. Goodman, BA, MLIS

More high school seniors are taking a chance at their dream of attending an Ivy League university. Five of the Ivies released their application data for the Class of 2022; Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Brown and Dartmouth. All saw application increases between 7 and 14 percent, pushing them to all break their previous records. Harvard had 42,742 applications, up 8.2 percent, Yale had 35,305 applications, up 7.3 percent, Brown had 35,368 applications, up 8 percent and Dartmouth with 22,005 applications up 9.8 percent. Princeton, however, saw the biggest increase in applications with up 14 percent. Three of the Ivies; Cornell, Columbia and the University of Pennsylvania did not release their data. Increase in financial aid packages at the Ivies are attracting the record number…

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Education March 26, 2018: Harvard to stop requiring SAT and ACT writing section for Class of 2023 Admissions

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EDUCATION

Harvard to stop requiring SAT and ACT writing section for Class of 2023 Admissions

By Bonnie K. Goodman, BA, MLIS

Harvard College will no longer require students applying to the college to take the SAT and ACT writing section. Harvard College

It just became easier to apply to Harvard College. Harvard announced on Tuesday, March 20, 2018, that it will no longer require students applying to the college to take the writing section of the SAT and ACT standardized exams used for college admissions. Harvard will look for students applying to submit other forms of writing samples with their applications. Now a majority of Ivy League colleges do not require the writing section.

College spokesperson Rachel Dane told the Harvard Crimson in an emailed statement about the policy change. Dane explained, “Harvard will accept the ACT/SAT with or without writing, starting with the Class of 2023, entering…

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Education March 15, 2018: MIT releases Class of 2022 admissions rate record low admitted

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EDUCATION

MIT releases Class of 2022 admissions rate record low admitted

By Bonnie K. Goodman, BA, MLIS

MIT released their lowest admission rate yet 6.7 percent for the Class of 2022 (Source: mit.edu)

Pie day, Wednesday, March 14, 2018, has arrived and that means the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), has released that admissions rate for the Class of 2022. This year, MIT released their lowest number on record, continuing the trend of lower admission rates among Ivy League and elite universities. MIT admitted only 1,464 high school seniors out of the 21,706 that applied this cycle, making the admissions rate one of the university’s most selective at only 6.7 percent. This year’s number is lower than last year’s 7.1 percent admission rate by 0.4 percent. For the Class of 2021, MIT admitted 1,438 students out of the 20,247 that applied both the early action and regular admission…

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Full Texts Political Transcripts March 20, 2018: Remarks by President Donald Trump at the National Republican Congressional Committee March Dinner

POLITICAL TRANSCRIPTS

TRUMP PRESIDENCY & 115TH CONGRESS:

Remarks by President Trump at the National Republican Congressional Committee March Dinner

Source: WH, 3-20-18

Issued on: 

National Building Museum
Washington, D.C.

7:13 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Oh, thank you very much, everybody.  (Applause.)  What a group.  What a group.  Thank you.  (Applause.)

Thank you very much.  And I have to say, I don’t know if you know, you broke the all-time record.  Last year was your record, and I was here too.  (Laughter.)  And the year before that, you didn’t do so well, and I wasn’t here.  (Laughter.)  You went from $18 million, which is good — not great — to $30 million last year.  And this year — and I think that was some kind of an all-time record, by the way.  So you have to be proud.  But this year we did $32 million.  So that’s quite a record.  (Applause.)

And it really is wonderful to be here with so many friends and colleagues, and really true and great American patriots.

I want to begin by thanking our incredible House leadership team, Speaker Paul Ryan.  Paul, thank you.  Thank you, Paul.  (Applause.)

A wonderful man who I’ve gotten to know very well — what a personality — Kevin McCarthy.  Where’s Kevin?  Where is — stand up, Kevin.  (Applause.)  Thank you, Kevin.

A man who’s got more courage than all of us, Steve Scalise.  (Applause.)  Steve.  You don’t have to stand.  Look at him.  Kevin, he got up faster than you did.  I don’t know what’s — (laughter).

Conference Chairwoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers.  Cathy.  Cathy.  (Applause.)  Great job.  Great job, Cathy.

NRCC Chair Steve Stivers — a general.  I didn’t even know about that.  I’m impressed.  (Applause.)  I don’t know if I like that or your political career better, but they’re both very good.  Thank you, General.

And tonight’s dinner chair, Congressman Tom Emmer.  Thank you, Tom.  Thank you, Tom.  (Applause.)  Thank you very much.  Great job.  $32 million — I guess you did a good job.  (Laughs.)  We did it together.  (Laughter.)  He was so generous.  He said, “You did it.”  Nope, we did it together.  That’s the way we’re working, right?  It’s the way we’re — thank you very much, Tom.

Our Republican majority is one of the most successful in the history of the United States Congress.  Now, we must work to keep our majority so we can keep up the fight for American workers, American security, and the American values enshrined in our glorious Constitution and in our great American flag.  (Applause.)

This year, in this election, we are fighting to win, and we are going to win.  Just no reason why we shouldn’t win with what we’ve done over the last year.  No reason whatsoever.

We love our country.  We cherish our liberty.  And we always put America first.  If you notice, we’re doing that on trade.  We’re doing that on a lot of things.  (Applause.)  America first.  It’s about time.  It’s about time.

Our agenda is already exceeding our highest expectations.  We’ve actually accomplished more than we said we would, and that’s been a long time since you’ve heard that.  We’ve accomplished a lot more.  They said it the other night, that Donald Trump actually has accomplished more than he said he would.  So that’s a good feeling.  And it wasn’t even a friend that said that the other night, which is really a good feeling.

We’ve created more than 3 million new jobs since the election.  And if we would have said that number prior to the election, nobody would have believed it possible.  Jobless claims are at — think of it — jobless claims are at a nearly 50-year low.  Fifty years.  (Applause.)  That’s an amazing statistic.

African American unemployment has reached the lowest levels ever recorded.  (Applause.)  And I have to tell you, the fake news about two weeks ago got me on that one.  Because, two months ago, it was the lowest level ever recorded.  Then, about four weeks ago, it went slightly not as good.  And I made a speech; I said, “African American unemployment has reached the lowest levels ever recorded.”  And it really wasn’t.  It was good, but it wasn’t.  And they got me.  They said it wasn’t so.

But then, here’s what happened.  Last week, it went back down to the lowest levels ever recorded.  So we have it.  (Laughter and applause.)  So we have it, right?  It makes us feel good.  That’s an important one.  And here’s another one: Hispanic American unemployment has also reached historic lows — lowest ever recorded.  (Applause.)  And women: The lowest levels in 18 years.  (Applause.)

Wages are rising at the fastest pace in more than a decade, and I’ve been talking on the campaign trail for so long that wages have been stagnant for 18, 20, and even 21 years.

Confidence is the highest in history.  In the history of our country, confidence for manufacturers is the highest.  (Applause.)  And you see it: Companies are moving back.  Chrysler is moving back to Michigan from Mexico.  You look at so many different companies.  Foxconn, they make a lot of the Apple products.  Great products.  They’re moving to Wisconsin.

We have massive companies moving back in.  They all want to be back in.  American producers in the mining, construction, and manufacturing industries gained more jobs in February than in any month in nearly 20 years.  Think of that.  (Applause.)

I mean, do you ever hear numbers like this?  And these are really numbers that we’re getting right out of the manual.  This is it.  It’s hard to believe.  These are incredible numbers.  That’s why we should do great when we run in a very short period of time.

The economy is booming, and it’s booming because we passed the biggest tax cut and reform in American history.  (Applause.)  Biggest in American history.

And when they came to me — because not since Ronald Reagan has anything been close — and when they came to me, they said, “We’re going to pass tax reform.”  I said, “Why hasn’t it been done in 38 years?”  They said, “We don’t know, you just can’t do it.”  And I said, “Well, it doesn’t make sense.  You’re cutting taxes. Why?”  “Well, sir, I don’t know, but here’s the bill.  It’s tax reform.  It says tax reform.”

And I said, “There’s something wrong.  How come it hasn’t happened?”  And I said, “You know, I think I have the idea.  Don’t call it tax reform.  Call it tax cuts.”  It was never called tax cuts.  And they said, “Well, what is that?”  I said, “Tax reform might mean you’re reforming taxes and you’re going to raise taxes.  Nobody knows what it means.  So call it tax cuts.  And in fact, let’s call it the Tax Cut, Cut, Cut bill.”  (Laughter.)

And Paul Ryan wouldn’t do it.  You know, he’s a classy guy.  He said, “That’s just — I can’t do it.”  (Laughter.)  So we called it the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.  And that’s fine, right?  (Applause.)

And I see Kevin Brady here someplace.  Where’s Kevin?  Stand up, Kevin, please.  (Applause.)  He doesn’t stop.  And let’s not tell anybody, although you have a lot of cameras back there, actually.  Let’s not tell anybody, Kevin, about phase two that we’ve already started on, right?  Phase two tax cuts.  Right?  (Inaudible.)  (Applause.)  Thank you, Kevin.

More than 6 million Americans have already received a tax cut bonus or a pay raise, and that is just the beginning.  I want to thank everyone who made this incredible victory possible, including so many friends that worked with Kevin and myself, people in Congress, great senators, great congresspeople.  You are really incredible, so enjoy it because we’re going to start, probably, on Monday, with Kevin and myself and everybody on doing it again.

And I just want to thank you.  And on behalf of Paul, and Kevin, and my other Kevin, my — I don’t know, I think Brady, maybe, is better looking than Kevin.  I don’t know.  (Laughter.)

But we really are.  We really — I have to thank the people in this room because you really made it possible.  And you worked hard, and you just wouldn’t stop, and you wouldn’t take no for an answer.  A lot of obstacles.  You wouldn’t take no for an answer.

But while Republicans were fighting to reduce taxes for hardworking Americans, the Democrats were fighting to increase taxes.  That’s what they want to do.  They’re actually working right now to increase taxes.  And I’m saying, “How do you lose to that?”  (Laughter.)  They want to increase taxes.  Maybe they’ll call that tax reform.  (Laughter.)

Every single Democrat in Congress opposed our middle class tax cuts.  And if Democrats were to gain control of the House, the first thing they would do is raise your taxes.  They would raise your taxes.  They would take away what we’ve done and raise your taxes.  And actually, I’ve seen some of the numbers — very substantially raise your taxes.

Republicans also repealed one of the nation’s cruelest and most unfair taxes ever: the Obamacare individual mandate.  (Applause.)

And the mandate is gone forever.  And that’s a beauty.  You pay a lot of money not to have to pay and not to get healthcare.  So you’re paying not to have healthcare.  I mean, that wasn’t so good.  But we got rid of it.

And you know, included — that nobody even talks about — is ANWR in Alaska, one of the great sites of energy in the world.  And I didn’t think it was a big deal.  And then one day, a friend of mine who was in the oil business called.  “Is it true that you have ANWR in the bill?”  I said, “I don’t know.  Who cares?  What is that?”  (Laughter.)  “What does that mean?”

They said, “No, is it true?”  I said, “What does it mean?  What’s the big deal that they did put it in?”  He said, “Well, you know, Reagan tried, every single President tried, and not one President was successful in getting it.  The Bushes weren’t — everybody.”

I said, “You got to be kidding?  I love it now.”  And after that we fought like hell to get ANWR.  (Laughter.)  He talked me into it — (applause) — and he didn’t care, but he said it was amazing.

So by itself, that would have been a big bill.  But that was included.  And we’re doing great, by the way, on energy.  We are now an exporter of energy.  Can you believe that?  (Applause.)  Ten million barrels, folks.  We just cracked ten million barrels.

We’ve also ended the crushing onslaught of federal and other regulation.  That’s a big deal.  (Applause.)  And I hate to say it to Kevin, but some people consider what we’ve done on regulation as important and some even more important than the tremendous tax cuts because the regulations were killing our country.  They were killing us.  (Applause.)

Together, we have set a record for cutting the red tape — passing a record number of bills to permanently remove job-killing regulations.  All over the country, they’re building now where they had no chance of getting going.

Even if you look at the pipelines — immediately upon taking office, I let the pipelines go — Keystone, you know, both of them.  And we let them proceed.  Forty-eight thousand jobs, and we’re going to have two great, environmentally friendly pipelines.  Really great.  Forty-eight thousand jobs.  That was an easy one.  But they would have never been built.

We have ended the war on American energy, and we have ended the war on beautiful, clean coal.  (Applause.)

And thanks to this Republican Congress, we’re transforming the VA to keep America’s promise to our brave, incredible, beautiful veterans.  (Applause.)

And I want to thank Chairman Phil Roe.  Our Republican majorities sent me legislation that has been incredible — really incredible.  You know, we have VA accountability.  They’ve been trying to get this for 30 years — accountability.  Sounds easy.  But VA accountability, and we got it passed.  That means that people that are very bad — they’re bad in many ways; they’re even sadistic.  You couldn’t fire people from the VA.  Now, you look at them, they do a bad job, they do something wrong, they hurt our veterans — we look at them, and we say, “Jim, you’re fired.  Get the hell out of here.”  (Applause.)  I made a lot of money with that phrase.  That was a great one.  (Laughter.)

But Congressman Roe, where are you?  Congressman Roe.  Congressman, thank you, great job.  Great job.  Thank you.  It’s really moving along.  And choice is coming.  Choice — where the veterans can actually — instead of waiting on line for weeks and weeks and weeks, they can actually go and see a doctor and have it taken care of, and we pay.  (Applause.)  And that’s going to be the big one.  Do you agree with that, Phil?

Because of Republican leadership that all of you helped make possible, America is safer and America is much stronger.  Our military is now better funded, better equipped, and better prepared to defeat any foe that dares to threaten our country or our people.

America is being respected again on the world stage.  We’re rebuilding our very depleted military — $700 billion.  And next year, $716 billion.  (Applause.)  We had to do it.  And obviously, defense is number one, but you know what else it is?  Jobs.  Lots of jobs, because we build our equipment.  So it’s lots of jobs.

For the last eight years, Democrats apologized for America.  Republicans, on the other hand, are standing up for America.  (Applause.)  Right?  We’ve seen a lot of apologies.  Last eight years, we’ve seen a lot of apologizing.  Not any longer.  We don’t apologize.  (Applause.)  Took a little while to figure that one out.

It has been an incredible year for our country and for the Republican Party.  And the accomplishments of our party in Congress are even more impressive because Democrats have stood in the way of progress every single day.

Do you know, we have hundreds of people that cannot come into the administration because they’re being slow-walked by the Democrats in the Senate?  Last count, it was 270 people.  Now the only thing good about that — in the private sector they would like it.  They would say we’re cutting payroll.

But here, we want to get them — in the State Department.  And one of your originals, Mike Pompeo, will be, hopefully, very soon, our new Secretary of State.  (Applause.)  He’s going to do a great job.  Mike is going to do a great job.

Not only did Democrats universally oppose tax cuts, but every single Democrat voted no on better healthcare.  They voted no.  Every single one.  The one thing they do great is obstruct.  They’re great at obstruction.  They’re wonderful at sticking in a bloc.  They rarely break up, although I think we’re going to break them up a little bit because a lot of them are saying nice things about me in certain states that we won by a lot, and they’re running in races.  You know about that, right?

But they really are a bloc.  They just vote no.  And I don’t think people want that when it comes time to elect.  They don’t want to fix our healthcare system.  They don’t want DACA.  They do not want DACA because they think it might be a good political issue, and we want DACA.  And DACA is very much tied to the wall, and we have to have the wall.  For the drugs that are pouring into our country, and for the people that we don’t want in our country, we’re going to have the wall.  (Applause.)

But they don’t want DACA.  They really don’t.  They want to use it as a political football.  And guess what?  I think it plays better for us than it does for them because we want to do something for the 800,000, and they don’t.  So it’s been a little bit of change of position, and we’re going to win that one every time.  But we’re also getting the wall.

Nearly every Democrat voted against a ban on late-term abortion, when unborn babies can feel the pain.  The late-term abortion ban is commonsense policy, supported by almost two-thirds of the American people.  But virtually every Democrat voted in lockstep against protecting these innocent lives.

On issue after issue, House Democrats are way outside of the American mainstream.  Nowhere in the Democrats’ extremism — and nowhere can you see anything displayed more clearly than on immigration.  A vote for House Democrats is truly a vote for open borders — people pouring into our country, pouring in.  We have no idea who they are.  They’re coming in — open borders.  You look at sanctuary cities, where criminals are protected.

If House Democrats control the committees and control the floor, they will block every single effort to secure our borders and to defend our communities.

Nearly every House Democrat voted in favor of sanctuary cities.  They voted to release criminal aliens to prey on innocent American lives.  Republicans believe our cities should be safe havens for law-abiding Americans, not for criminal aliens or illegal immigrants.  (Applause.)

It’s time for Congress to stop funding sanctuary cities so we can restore the rule of law.  (Applause.)  The American people are with us.  Let’s fight to save those incredible American lives.  And you see what’s happening.  You see the slaughter.  You see the kind of killing and hurt and pain.  And we are fighting very hard, and I think we’re doing one hell of a job.  And you look at our borders, and you see the difference in the numbers.  But the laws are not helping us, because we have some laws that are very much against everything that we stand for in this room.

House Democrats also voted against Kate’s Law -– a commonsense bill authored by Chairman Bob Goodlatte.  Where’s Bob?  Bob.  (Applause.)  Bob.  Thank you, Bob.  And that bill has been sitting for a long time over there, Bob, hasn’t it?  It’s too bad.

They voted against legislation to keep gang members like MS-13 out of our country.  These are extreme and dangerous positions.  They make no sense.

So here is our message from the coming election to the American people: If the Democrats ever got back into power, they would vote to raise your taxes; release dangerous criminals; open your borders; shut down this great surge of American energy that is tremendous for jobs, tremendous for the economic wellbeing of our country, and, frankly, helping the world.  They would take over American healthcare; take away your Second Amendment; and ship away your jobs to other countries, like has gone on for so many years.  And those days are over.  Those days are over.  (Applause.)

The world, including our friends, has been taking advantage of the United States of America.  We can’t allow that to happen anymore.  We just can’t.  We want our jobs to be here.  We want our great factories, our great plants to be here.  We don’t want people fired and watch a company leave our country, make a product somewhere nearby, ship it back into our country, not be taxed, and all we get out of it is unemployment and pain.  Not going to happen anymore.  That’s why so many companies are moving back.  (Applause.)  They’re moving back.  First time in many, many decades.

That’s why we need strong Republican majorities.  (Applause.)  It doesn’t matter what Democrat candidates say on the campaign trail because once Democrats get to Washington, they always do the same thing: They vote for the liberal Pelosi agenda down the line, straight down the line every single time.  They will never vote for us.  They will never vote for what’s right.

These days, there’s no such thing as a Blue Dog Democrat, a Red State Democrat, or a Conservative Democrat because they are all Pelosi Democrats: weak on crime, weak on terrorism, and weak on national defense.  (Applause.)

And on terrorism, in Iraq and Syria, we’ve taken back almost 100 percent, in a very short period of time, of the land that they took.  And it all took place since our election.  We’ve taken back close to 100 percent.

Democrats like to campaign as moderates, but they always govern like radicals.  That is why I am going to campaign all across this country to elect Republicans so that we can reduce taxes further; reduce crime; increase jobs; and make our communities safe, and prosperous, and secure.

And I’ll be all over the country.  Kevin, you’ll get me all over.  Where is our Kevin?  You’re going to get me all over the country, Kevin?  (Applause.)  And I’ll be complaining every single trip.  (Laughter.)  But I’m going to get there.

We are going to keep criminals off our streets and terrorists — we’re going to keep them the hell out of our country.  (Applause.)

Our opponents are fielding the most candidates they’ve ever had in a quarter century.  Many have not held office before, which means it will be easier for them to conceal their true beliefs.  You’re not going to know anything about these people.

That’s why we must tell the truth over and over again: A vote for a House Democrat is a vote for higher taxes, open borders, and the destruction of American jobs and American wealth.  It’s also the destruction of the American Dream.  It’s a dream, and they’re destroying that beautiful dream.

But to win, we have to out-work the opposition.  For some reason, when a party wins the presidency — incredible — what happens is they lose two years later.  And I know what happens, I figured — you know, I could never understand — like, 95 percent of the time they end up losing the midterms.  It’s called complacency.

Nobody has explained it.  I couldn’t understand why — you win the presidency, you think it’d — and we do record business.  The economy is maybe the best it’s ever been ever, I think — ever.  How has it ever been better?  (Applause.)

The stock market is at an all-time high, jobs are the number one — 154 million jobs.  That is the most jobs in the history of our country.  We have, right now, the most jobs.  (Applause.)

We need more people, if you can believe it.  We’re going to have an incredible expansion.  But it’s called complacency.  Because you win the presidency, you work so hard.  Look how hard we worked.  You work, you work, you work, and you win.  And now you take it easy a little bit.  “Oh, I’m so happy we won.  That was so hard.”  And then a year goes by, and now, all of the sudden, you’re running again.  And you get complacent, and you lose.

But then what happens — oh, boy, are we going to — are we going to win 2020.  But we have to worry about ’18 before we worry about ’20.  (Applause.)  But there is a complacency, and I can understand it.  It’s natural — human trait.  But we cannot be complacent.  We can’t.  We have so much to gain, and this country has so much to lose.

So we have to remember — you know, we have a short period of time now.  We have to remember.

And the other thing is, you know, we had five races up until last week.  And of the five races, we won all five.  These people back here expected us to lose a couple of those races, maybe more than that.  We won.  They didn’t know what to do.

So they said, “We didn’t win by as much as we were supposed to.”  And, by the way, if we won by more, they would’ve found a reason.  So we’re fighting the press, we’re fighting the media; we always will, for whatever reason.  But we’re 5 and 0, and then we lost by 300 votes the other night, right?  Three-hundred out of two-hundred-and-twenty-some-odd-thousand votes.   Three-hundred votes.

And I will tell you, though, that area in Pennsylvania and all of Pennsylvania and all other states — they’re energized because I made a speech there two nights before, and I’ll tell you what — that crowd was — they were going.  They really — they were happy.  They were thrilled.  I wish I was running.  Boy.  (Laughter.)    Man.  That was some energetic group.  And it was close.  It was really close.  We went in there; they were down.  Good man — Rick Saccone.  Good man.  And didn’t quite make it.  But lost — think of it — lost by about 300 votes out of all those votes.  So it’s pretty incredible.  But we can’t let it happen.  We have to win.  There’s nothing like winning.  We have to win.

Now, the last election, we defied every expectation and totally proved the pundits wrong.  Right?  They said, “There’s no way to 270.”  Remember that?  (Applause.)  “There is no way to 270.”  And everybody believed them.   I even believed them.   I said, you know, it doesn’t look good.  I heard this for six months.  “You cannot win unless you win the great state of Ohio.”  I kept hearing that, right?  (Applause.)  And I said, “I think I’m doing well, but they’re showing me a little down in Ohio.”  And I said, “Man, I guess you can’t win if you can’t win Ohio.”  So I went to Ohio — we have great people.  Those are great people.  Now, we really won Ohio by a lot, right?  (Applause.)  We won Ohio by a lot.  And we won Iowa by a lot.

And we ran the East Coast because, you know, we have a tremendous disadvantage in presidential elections with the Electoral College.  Much easier to get the popular vote, but it’s a very much different campaign.  It’s like somebody that trains for the 100-yard dash and trains for the mile.  It’s a much different thing.  But we just ran out the East Coast, and it was a thing of beauty.  But they all said we couldn’t do it.  Now they say the midterms.  Here come the midterms.  And, as usual, they say, “Well, 95 percent of the time it doesn’t happen.”  But nobody has ever had an economy like this.  Nobody has ever had a military that’s getting so much stronger so fast.  Nobody has ever done what we’ve done.  The people in this room have done it.  Nobody has ever done it.

We sent a message straight to the media, to the lobbyists, and to the powerbrokers that this city doesn’t belong to you; it belongs to the American people.  That’s what the message was.  (Applause.)

Now, I shouldn’t say it to the people in this room — (laughter) — because, you know, a couple of you are a little marginal about this.  But I came up with this expression — it’s called, “Drain the swamp,” right?  Drain the swamp.  And I hated it.  (Applause.)  No, no.  I hated it.  And it was a speech during the campaign, and it was a term that was actually give to me.  Usually, I like to think them up myself, but this was given to me.  Which bothered me, too.  (Laughter.)  I never liked that.

But they had this expression, “Drain the swamp,” and I hated it.  I thought it was so hokey.  I said, “That is the hokiest — give me a break.  I’m embarrassed to say it.”  And I was in Florida with 25,000 people going wild, and I said, “And we will drain the swamp.”  The place went crazy.  (Laughter.)   I couldn’t believe it.  And then, the next speech, I said it again.  And they went even crazier.  “We will drain the swamp.”  I hate that, especially these people right here.  (Laughter and Applause).  They’re saying, “Oh, please don’t say this, Mr. President.”  Don’t worry.  Close your ears.  “We will drain the swamp.”  And every time I said it, I’d get the biggest applause.  And after four or five times, I said, “Boy, what a great expression.  I love saying it.  You know?”  (Laughter.)   It’s amazing.  It really is amazing.

But this city does belong to loyal, hardworking, taxpaying Americans.  And with your help, with the help of the hard work of everyone in this room — and you do work hard; it’s a tough job.  Politics is nasty.  I used to say, “The toughest people are real estate developers in New York City.”  And now I say, “You guys are babies.”  (Laughter.)  They come to see me, “Hi, Don.”  I say, “You are nothing.”  (Laughter and Applause).  These politicians are brutal.  “We got a leak.  We got a this.  We got a that.  We got a horrible false story on the front page of every newspaper.”  No, no, no.  Real estate developers are no longer the toughest people.  Politicians in Washington are the toughest people.  (Applause.)  Not even — it’s not even close.

But we’re going to defy the predictions once again.  We will keep the House majority.  (Applause.)  And we will keep fighting for the change the American people want and they deserve.  The Democrats think they’re invincible.  I mean, I watch this Maxine Waters.  You ever see Maxine Waters?  (Laughter.)   A low-IQ individual.  (Applause.)  Low IQ.  “We will impeach him.  We will impeach him.”  “But he hasn’t done anything wrong.”  “It doesn’t matter.  We will impeach him.”  (Laughter.)   This is what we’re going to have.  This is what we’re going to have to fight against.  It’s easier just keep going good.  We’re going to keep the economy strong.

The truth is, the Democrats never have been more vulnerable because they’ve lost touch with normal, everyday working people.  Democrats haven’t learned.  (Applause.)  They still think the loyal citizens who care about jobs and borders and security are deplorable.

You know, when Hillary made that speech, she said, “deplorable.”  I thought it was bad, but I didn’t know it was going to be that bad.  (Laughter.)  But the problem is, she said so many of my people were deplorable.  And, you know, the next day, I made a speech, and everybody is wearing, “I am deplorable.”  And I said, “There’s something going on here.”  That was not a good word to use.  You have to be careful in politics, right?  That was not a good — and I would say her last statement about women — they have to get approval from their husbands, their sons, and their male bosses to vote for Trump.  That was not a good statement.  (Laughter and applause).  Not good.

You notice how fast the Democrats have run from these statements now?  They are disavowing those statements like I’ve never heard before.  “She’s wrong.”  People that were her biggest supporters are now saying, “What is she doing?”  Why doesn’t she just go home?  (Laughter.)   But that was not a good statement.

But we know the truth.  And the truth is that we are great patriots.  We really are.  We’re doing what’s right.  We come from every city, from every town, from every walk of life.  We come from backgrounds, and it doesn’t matter the color, the creed.  But we all have one thing in common: We love this country.  We love this country.  (Applause.)  And we’re putting the interests of our country and our people and our taxpayers — we’re putting them first.  This election is not merely about which party is in charge in Congress.  It’s about whether the American people will be in charge of their government.

The choice cannot be any clearer.  It’s never been this clear.  It’s never — think of it.  It’s never been this clear.  The Democrats used to be somewhat in the middle, and now they’re so far right — meaning, that’s where they’re going to be.  But the Democrats used to be right here.  And now what happened is they just moved.  They just moved.  They’re going so far to the left-hand side of the equation, I don’t know whether or not it’s going to even be possible for them to do well.  But for some reason, they’ll probably do okay.  We can’t let that happen.  They have gone so far left, we have to go a little bit further right.  We’re doing very, very well, and I think you’re going to have something very, very, special take place in a short period of time.  (Applause.)

While congressional Democrats delay, and they obstruct, and they resist, Republicans actually deliver.  There’s never been a group that have delivered like we’ve delivered, especially in the first year of an administration.  We’re creating jobs for everybody — for the African American population.  They’re thanking me.  They’re thanking me.  Hispanic Americans, all Americans.  But they’re really thanking us.

While Democrats denigrate our history, Republicans believe young Americans should be taught to have pride in America’s achievements and to treasure our truly incredible heritage.  While Democrats hand over our rights to international organizations, we defend our sovereignty and we defend our Constitution.  And we defend our American flag.  We’re the ones defending it.  (Applause.)

And while Democrats sit on their hands, Republicans stand with law enforcement.  (Applause.)  These are great people.  We stand with working families.  And we always proudly stand for our national anthem.  (Applause.)

We believe in strong borders and safe communities.  And we believe in the truth of our national motto: In God we trust.  (Applause.)

Our victories are Americans’ victories because the Republican Party is now the party of the American worker, the American family, and the American Dream.  (Applause.)

Our mission is to serve the needs, the desires, and the highest ambitions of the American people.  And that’s what we’re doing.  And we’re really doing a great job of it.  We work for them.  Their hopes are our hopes.  Their dreams are our dreams.  And their future if what we are fighting for each and every day.

With your help, and with our Republican majorities in Congress, we will carry the hopes and dreams of the American people all the way to victory in November.  So important.  So important.  And together, we will build a future of safety, security, prosperity, and freedom for all of our citizens.  We will never give in.  We will never give up.  And we will never, ever stop fighting to make America great again.  And that’s what’s happening.  (Applause.)

Thank you.  God bless you.  And God bless America.  Thank you, everybody.  (Applause.)  And congratulations on this evening.  Thank you very much.  Thank you.

END

7:56 P.M. EDT

Full Text Political Transcripts March 19, 2018: Remarks by President Donald Trump on Combating the Opiod Crisis

POLITICAL TRANSCRIPTS

TRUMP PRESIDENCY & 115TH CONGRESS:

Remarks by President Trump on Combating the Opioid Crisis

Source: WH, 3-19-18

Issued on: 

Manchester Community College
Manchester, New Hampshire

2:35 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you to our First Lady, Melania, who has been so incredible. (Applause.) Thank you. And we are blessed to have you as our First Lady. Really are.

It’s great to be back in the beautiful state of New Hampshire. (Applause.) I don’t know if you remember, but this is the first place I came for the primaries. (Applause.) And this is the room right here. So I like this room. This has been a good room.

We’re honored to be joined by your wonderful and very talented Governor, Chris Sununu. Chris, thank you. (Applause.) Thank you, Chris. Oh, and there’s another talented governor. Governor Sununu, stand up. (Applause.) I have to tell you, there was nobody tougher on Trump at the beginning. (Laughter.) It’s true. There was nobody on television tougher. And then we met each other and we liked each other, and he went from the worst to the best. Governor, thank you. (Laughs.) I mean that, too. Thank you.

I want to thank also Attorney General Sessions, and Secretary — thank you, Jeff. — (applause) — Secretary Azar, Secretary Nielsen, and Surgeon General Adams for joining us at this very important event.

The First Lady and I just visited the Manchester Fire Department Safe Station. Talking about it all over the country. The Fire Chief, Dan Goonan, and all of the first responders with us today, thank you. You’ve been incredible, and you’re saving American lives.

We’re also joined by a number of law enforcement officers who we love. Our police, DEA, ICE, Border Patrol agents, and Customs officers work night and day to keep drugs out of our communities and criminals off of our streets. (Applause.) So today, we thank you, we honor you, and we want you to know that we will always have your backs 100 percent. Thank you very much, law enforcement. Thank you. (Applause.)

I especially want to acknowledge all of the families with us today who have endured terrible hardships because of the opioid crisis, and especially those who have lost precious loved ones. I’ve been saying this for a long time, and it all started right here in New Hampshire, because I see what you’re going through. About as bad as there is anywhere in the country. And I said I’d be back, and we are back. And we’re pouring a lot of money and a lot of talent into this horrible problem. And we pledge to honor the memory of those you lost with action and determination and resolve. We’ll get it. We will not rest until the end. And I will tell you, this scourge of drug addiction in America will stop. It will stop. (Applause.)

Every day, 116 Americans die from an opioid-related overdose. In New Hampshire, the overdose, really, death rate — I mean, can you believe this? The death rate is double the national average. It’s got difficulties like people wouldn’t believe.

Defeating this epidemic will require the commitment of every state, local, and federal agency. Failure is not an option. Addiction is not our future. We will liberate our country from this crisis. Never been like this. Hundreds of years — never been like this. And we will raise a drug-free generation of American children.

Last October, we declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency. Should have been done a long time before. Since then, we’ve worked with Congress to ensure at least 6 billion additional dollars, going through right now, in new funding in 2018 and 2019 to combat the opioid crisis. And we will be spending the most money ever on the opioid crisis. (Applause.)

On our most recent National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, people across the country turned in more than 900,000 pounds of unused or expired prescription drugs — more than the weight of three Boeing 757s.

Our Customs and Border Protection — and these people, the job they do is incredible — seized nearly 1,500 pounds of fentanyl last year, nearly three times the amount seized in 2016. And I told China: Don’t send it. (Applause.) And I told Mexico: Don’t send it. Don’t send it.

In 2017, ICE arrested criminal aliens with 76,000 charges and convictions for dangerous drug crimes.

Last year, the Department of Justice prosecuted more than 3,000 defendants in cases involving opioid, all of the trafficking, and the related crimes — 3,000 cases — including a pharmacist, a physician’s assistant, and an opioid trafficker, each charged with committing serious drug crimes in New Hampshire.

Whether you are a dealer or doctor or trafficker or a manufacturer, if you break the law and illegally peddle these deadly poisons, we will find you, we will arrest you, and we will hold you accountable. (Applause.) Thank you.

Here in New Hampshire, I applaud all of the Drug Enforcement Agents and law enforcement officers who recently coordinated Operation Granite Shield, an 18-hour enforcement action targeting drug traffickers that resulted in the arrest of 151 people. These are terrible people, and we have to get tough on those people, because we can have all the Blue Ribbon committees we want, but if we don’t get tough on the drug dealers, we’re wasting our time. Just remember that. We’re wasting our time. And that toughness includes the death penalty. (Applause.)

You know, it’s an amazing thing. Some of these drug dealers will kill thousands of people during their lifetime — thousands of people — and destroy many more lives than that. But they will kill thousands of people during their lifetime, and they’ll get caught and they’ll get 30 days in jail. Or they’ll go away for a year, or they’ll be fined. And yet, if you kill one person, you get the death penalty or you go to jail for life.

So if we’re not going to get tough on the drug dealers who kills thousands of people and destroy so many people’s lives, we are just doing the wrong thing. We have got to get tough. This isn’t about nice anymore. This isn’t about committees. This isn’t about let’s get everybody and have dinners, and let’s have everybody go to a Blue Ribbon committee and everybody gets a medal for, frankly, talking and doing nothing. This is about winning a very, very tough problem. And if we don’t get very tough on these dealers, it’s not going to happen, folks. It’s not going to happen. And I want to win this battle.

I don’t want to leave at the end of seven years and have this problem, okay? (Applause.) I don’t want that. Right? Thank you. Not going to happen. Thank you all. A lot of voters in this room. I see that. Thank you. (Applause.) No, we’re going to solve this problem. We’re going to solve it with brains, we’re going to solve it with resolve, and we’re going to solve it with toughness. Because toughness is the thing that they most fear. That’s what they most fear.

So to the brave agents and officers, thank you for protecting us all.

Last year, my commission on combatting the incredible crisis of opioids issued 56 recommendations. My administration agreed with all of the commission’s goals, and we’ve worked aggressively to put them into action.

Today, I’m here to announce additional steps that we’re taking as part of our nationwide initiative to address the opioid crisis, and, by the way, the drug crisis — the general drug crisis.

First, we’re taking action to reduce drug demand by preventing Americans from becoming addicted in the first place. So important. That includes increasing federal funding for the development of non-addictive painkillers. And we have to come up with a solution where we come up with a painkiller that’s not so addictive. And we can do it. We’re not that far off. We can do it. These things are incredibly addictive. So we’re going to find that answer also.

Here with us today are Jim and Jean Mozer. They lost their beautiful son, Adam, to a fentanyl overdose. His addiction began with prescription pills he found in their kitchen cabinet. They have since begun the Zero Left initiative to help families get rid of excess painkillers. Jim and Jean, we’re sorry for your loss — a great boy; he’s a great boy — and we applaud your strength and your leadership. And where are you? Where are you? Come on up. Come on up here. Come on up here. (Applause.) Tell us about your boy.

MS. MOZER: Adam was our oldest son. He was a great kid. He was a smart kid. Grew up out in rural East Kingston, New Hampshire. He had a degree in actuarial science, which, as many of you know, that’s the science of forecasting risk.

He was the kind of kid that made you feel really good about yourself. You give him five minutes; you really liked him. And, you know, he just made a bad choice one night. As smart as he was, he found his way into our kitchen cabinet. And, sadly, the rest is history. He got hooked on it, and had to go to the street eventually. And he found fentanyl.

And he’s been gone for two-and-a-half years, and we miss him every day. Thank you.

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you, darling. You take care of yourself. Okay?

MS. MOZER: Thank you.

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you. Thank you very much. (Applause.) Thank you. Appreciate it. And so many cases like that.

We’re also taking action to prevent addiction by addressing the problem of overprescribing. (Applause.) And our Department of Justice is looking very seriously into bringing major litigation against some of these drug companies. We’ll bring it at a federal level. (Applause.) Some states are already bringing it, but we’re thinking about bringing it at a very high federal level. And we’ll do a job.

We’re going to cut nationwide opioid prescriptions by one-third over the next three years. We’re also going to make sure that virtually all prescriptions reimbursed by the federal government follow best practices for prescribing. We’ll ensure that opioid addiction is not subsidized by the American taxpayer. (Applause.)

The best way — so important — and the best way to beat the drug crisis is to keep people from getting hooked on drugs to begin with. As part of that effort — (applause) — so important. And this has been something that I’ve been very strongly in favor of: spending a lot of money on great commercials showing how bad it is, so that kids seeing those commercials during the right shows on television or wherever — the Internet — when they see these commercials they — “I don’t want any part of it.” That’s the least expensive thing we can do, where you scare them from ending up like the people in the commercials. And we’ll make them very, very bad commercials. We’ll make them pretty unsavory situations. And you’ve seen it before, and it’s had an impact on smoking and cigarettes. You see what happens to the body; you see what happens to the mind.

So we’re announcing a new website, CrisisNextDoor.gov, where Americans can share their stories about the danger of the opioid addiction and addictions.
But we’re thinking about doing, really, a largescale rollout of commercials that show how bad it is for the kids. And when they see those commercials, hopefully, they’re not going to be going to drugs of any kind — drugs of any kind. And we’ll save a lot of lives, and we’ll make their life a lot easier.

This epidemic can affect anyone, and that’s why we want to educate everyone.
The second part of our initiative is to reduce the supply of illicit drugs. Ninety percent of the heroin in America comes from our southern border, where, eventually, the Democrats will agree with us and we’ll build the wall to keep the damn drugs out. (Applause.)

AUDIENCE: Build that wall! Build that wall! Build that wall!

THE PRESIDENT: It’s pretty amazing. They don’t want to go with DACA, because they don’t care about DACA. But they’re trying to tie the wall to DACA, and DACA to the wall. And they want to keep DACA for the campaign instead of getting it approved, which we could do very easily. The Republicans are totally in favor of doing something substantial for DACA. But the Democrats like it as a campaign issue, so they don’t get it approved. And they want to tie it to the wall, which is okay with me. But both should get approved. They don’t want it to be approved. Remember what I said: They don’t want it to be approved. They want to make it part of the campaign. Well, we’ll make it part of the campaign, also. And we’ll win, because we’re going to win on those issues. (Applause.)

My administration is also confronting things called “sanctuary cities” that shield dangerous criminals. And every day, sanctuary cities release illegal immigrants and drug dealers, traffickers, and gang members back into our communities. They’re protected by these cities. And you say, “What are they doing?” They’re safe havens for just some terrible people. Some terrible people. And they’re making it very dangerous for our law enforcement officers. You see it all the time.

As the people of New Hampshire have learned firsthand, ending sanctuary cities is crucial to stopping the drug addiction crisis. And your governor, who is great — the numbers are going down in New Hampshire. I don’t know if you’ve seen it, but the numbers are going down. Chris, we were just — stand up, Chris. (Applause.) It’s really one of the few bright spots where the numbers actually are going down, and that’s a tremendous achievement. Thank you, Chris. (Applause.)

According to a recent Dartmouth study, the sanctuary city of Lawrence, Massachusetts is one of the primary sources of fentanyl in six New Hampshire counties. ICE recently arrested 15 MS-13 gang members — these are not good people, folks. Okay? These are bad, bad people. They don’t use guns. They’d rather use knives because it’s more painful and it takes longer. These are bad people — in Boston, Massachusetts, which is a place where you have sanctuary cities.

I’m repeating my call on Congress to block funds for sanctuary cities and to close the deadly loopholes that allow criminals back into our country and into our country in the first place. (Applause.)

You know, some things are very understandable. We have lots of issues where we’re on both sides of an issue, and you can understand the other side even though you don’t agree. Sanctuary cities are hard to understand for people because they don’t get it. They don’t get it. You see what’s going on in California, how terrible it is, how dangerous it is. And they’re all trying to protect sanctuary cities.

And whether it’s Kate Steinle or so many others, they’d be around today if these people weren’t allowed back into our country through, in this case, the southern border, at least five times. And look at the damage, and then look at this verdict. Look at the verdict. Can you believe the verdict?

So we have to get a lot smarter. We have to get a lot tougher. And speaking of tough, because here with us today is ICE Agent Derek Dunn. Derek worked with state police to uncover a major drug smuggling operation in Lawrence, Massachusetts. (Applause.) Where’s Derek? Derek. Where’s Derek? Come here, Derek. I love tough guys. We need tough guys. Come here, Derek. (Applause.)
AGENT DUNN: Just want to say thanks for everyone being here. And it’s been a battle. It’s been an absolute battle for our counterparts here at DEA and FBI and everybody — all the law enforcement, state police, and the local police. It’s been an absolute battle. We all work together, and we’re going to get this solved. (Applause.)

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you. He didn’t know he was going to do that. (Laughter.) And you didn’t know you were going to do that. But that’s in honor of your boy, right? You made a big impact.

I also want to mention ICE Agent Ron Morin and Manchester Police Detective Patrick Maguire. They helped lead the team that arrested a terrible human trafficker who used opioids to harm, in a very violent way, his victims. Thank you both for bringing the trafficker to a very strong and swift justice.
Where are you guys? Thank you. (Applause.) Stand up, fellas. Thank you. Thank you.

We’re also shutting down illegal online marketplaces and preventing drugs that come from China and other countries from bypassing our borders. And we’re getting very tough on it. It’s not that we have a choice. We don’t have a choice. We can be nice, and we can be soft and weak, and you’re not going to have a country left. So we have to strengthen up, and strengthen up our laws so that we can do what we have to do. We have to stop this from happening.

Drug traffickers kill so many thousands of our citizens every year. And that’s why my Department of Justice will be seeking so many much tougher penalties than we’ve ever had, and we will be focusing on the penalty that I talked about previously for the big pushers, the ones that are really killing so many people. And that penalty is going to be the death penalty. (Applause.)

If you look at — if you look at other countries — I’ve gotten to know the leaders of many countries. And I won’t mention names, but you know the countries I’m talking about. I go around, “How is your drug problem?” “We don’t have much of a drug problem.” “What do you mean you don’t have a drug problem?” “Well, we don’t have.” I say, how come? “We have zero tolerance for drug dealers.” I said, “What does that mean?” “That means we have the death penalty for drug dealers. We don’t have a drug problem.”

Take a look at some of these countries where they don’t play games. They don’t have a drug problem. We have court cases that last 10 years, and then they get out at the end. We got to be tough. We have to be smart. We have to change the laws, and we’re working on that right now. The Department of Justice is working very, very hard on that.

But the ultimate penalty has to be the death penalty. Now, maybe our country is not ready for that. It’s possible — it’s possible that our country is not ready for that. And I can understand it, maybe. Although, personally, I can’t understand that. But there are people that are good people, that are strong, smart people, and they would differ with most of us. But I think unless you do that, unless you have really, really powerful penalties, led by the death penalty for the really bad pushers and abusers, we are going to get nowhere. And I’m telling you, we are going to get somewhere.

Companies must also be held accountable. The Department of Justice recently created a task force to coordinate investigations and lawsuits against manufacturers and other bad actors that harm our citizens.

And I can tell you that Jeff Sessions, who’s here with us now, feels so strongly about this. And they’re working very hard and very effectively on that, and so we appreciate that very much. Thank you. Thank you, Jeff. (Applause.) Thank you.

I can think of nothing more important. The third part of our initiative is to get lifesaving help to those who need it. We’re going to make sure our first responders have access to lifesaving overdose-reversing drugs — which, by the way, are amazing.

Here with us today is Mike Kelly, the president of Adapt Pharma. Adapt Pharma makes an overdose-reversing drug for opioids, which I’ve watched and seen work. It’s called Narcan. It’s actually incredible. Today, we applaud Adapt Pharma’s decision to provide free — free — Narcan to all high schools, colleges, and universities in America.

I’d like you to come up, Mike. Come up. (Applause.) Where’s Mike? Come up, Mike. That’s really an amazing and generous offer. Thank you.

Tell us a little bit about that, Mike. Please.

MR. KELLY: So, Adapt is a small company that has a big job, which is to reverse overdoses. And we’ve provided, free of charge, four boxes to all colleges and universities in the United States; two boxes free for every high school in the United States; as well as educational awareness for the nursing departments, as well as the faculty to train and teach everybody about the dangers of opioids and the risks, and also the benefits of having Narcan nasal spray near where opioids are.

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much.

MR. KELLY: Thank you. Appreciate it. (Applause.)

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you, Mike. It’s amazing, generous. And I’ve watched the police and the fire — they come around and they’ve become so good at it. But I’ve seen people that are just about dead wake up.

Now, the problem is, they then go back, in many cases, to the drugs, and they do it again and again and again. But we have to work on that. We have to work on that very, very strongly.

I also want to recommend and commend a Richmond-based company, Kaléo, for donating more than 300,000 doses of their overdose-reversing drug to first responders, which has already saved more than 5,000 lives in a very short period of time.

My administration has made clear that medical providers can share crucial information with family members about an overdose so that their loved ones can help them get into treatment. We need treatment.

We’re making medically assisted treatment more available and affordable, and we continue to increase competition and drive down drug prices. And we’re driving them down. We’re going to have a major news conference, probably at the White House, in about a month, because all of you people — and I’m talking about prescription drugs, not necessarily the drugs that we’re talking about here. But we pay, as a country, so much more for drugs because of the drug lobbies and other reasons, and the complexity of distribution, which is basically another term for saying, “How do we get more money?”

And if you compare our drug prices to other countries in the world, in some cases it’s many times higher for the exact same pill, or whatever it is, in the exact same package, made in the exact same plant. And we’re going to change that.

And I would like to ask Secretary Azar just to come up and mention opioid, but also talk about how we’re getting your drug prices down. And we’ve already saved billions of dollars for our country, and it’s reflected in much lower drug prices. Watch what’s going to happen over a short period of time. This man is one of the great professionals, ran an incredibly successful drug company. Who knows better than the guy running the drug company, Eli Lilly? That’s your company, right? Or was.

SECRETARY AZAR: It was.

THE PRESIDENT: Now you’re on the other side, though. So nobody knows better. The most respected man in that industry — and we got him to work, because he loves our country.

Would you tell them a little bit about what you have planned for drug prices and also opioids, in terms of stoppage? Please. Secretary. (Applause.)

SECRETARY AZAR: Well, thank you, Mr. President. And, you know, you’ve done a lot already to tackle this issue of drug pricing. So, last year, the FDA approved more generic drugs than it ever has in its history. And that brings prices down for patients, for the system, for everybody. (Applause.)

THE PRESIDENT: Great.

SECRETARY AZAR: You also changed the rules so our senior citizens pay less out of pocket for their drugs. That’s $3.2 billion that they’re paying less out of pocket for their drugs when they go to the pharmacy. (Applause.)

And then, we’re going to be rolling out, as you mentioned, in about a month, a whole slate of other proposals around how we decrease the price of drugs and how we bring discounts that the middlemen right now are getting; how those will go to our patients, to individuals.

Now we’re attacking this with the same level of action, determination, and resolve that you’re bring to the opioid crisis. And that’s where we’re focused on prevention and getting that one-third fewer illegal opioid prescriptions to our people. The second is the stopping the illicit flow of these opioids into our country. And the third is compassionate treatment for people — evidence-based, science-based, compassionate treatment — that can help people recover and stay away from relapse.

So, thank you, Mr. President, for your leadership. (Applause.)

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you, Alex. You’ll be seeing drug prices falling very substantially in the not-too-distant future, and it’s going to be beautiful.
And I want to thank, also, Scott Gottlieb. Scott is working on different things, but one of them is called “Right to Try.” Do you know what “Right to Try” is? These are for people that are terminally ill. And there are very, very good-looking combinations of things, or pills, medicines, potential cures. And they’re terminal, and they’re not going to be living much longer. And we don’t have the right to give them these experimental drugs or these early-stage drugs that really show promise, for whatever reason. But they say because they don’t want to harm somebody, if you can believe it. They don’t want to harm. So the people will oftentimes go to foreign lands, foreign countries. They’ll do anything. They want hope. They want hope. “Right to Try.”

So we’re working with Congressman Greg Walden and numerous other senators and congressmen. And I think we’re going to have good luck. The Democrats have been pushing back on it, but I think many of them are also coming along. It’s called “Right to Try.” A patient is terminal. There’s good progress made with a certain drug. We’re going to make it possible for that patient to get that drug. And maybe it’s going to work. It’s hope. It’s incredible; they’ve been talking about this for years and years and years. We’re going to get it approved. So important. All right? (Applause.)

To further expand treatment, I’m also calling on Congress to change the restrictive 1970s-era law that prevents Medicaid from paying for care at certain treatment facilities with more than 16 beds. It’s such an important factor.

In the meantime, my administration is granting waivers to states so they can help people who need treatment now, Governor.

We’re also going to help inmates leaving prison get treatment so they can have a second chance to become productive, law-abiding citizens. And what we’ve really done for the inmates — you know, it’s very hard for them to get out of jail and get a job.

What we’ve really done for them — better than anything we can sign, any legislation that we can pass demanding that you hire — we’re getting a great economy. It hasn’t been this good in many, many years. Some people say it’s never been this good.

And what’s happened is, as you see, unemployment is way down, and people are starting to hire inmates. And the results are incredible. Some of these employers are calling up, saying, “Wow, what great people.” We’re giving them a second chance. It’s very, very important. So the tremendous economy is helping us very much with that program.

We want every American — (applause) — thank you. We want every American to be able to be able to reach their full God-given potential. And we will succeed together as one people, one nation, and one great American family. Because Americans never give in, and we never, ever give up. This group never gives up, right? Never give up. Your boy. (Applause.)

The brave families here today remind us that the strength of America is found in the heart of our people. We see America’s heart in the parents who won’t accept addiction as the fate of their children. And if something horrible has befallen that family, they go around and they want to make sure it never happens to another family. And that’s why we thank you so much, and we thank your boy. (Applause.) He did not die in vain.

We see it in sons and daughters who cheer on moms and dads as they recover. We see it in the doctors and nurses who provide constant and loving care. We see it in the heroic law enforcement officers who race into unimaginable danger. We see it in EMTs and firefighters who act so quickly to save so many lives. And we see this American heart in the men and women who fight every day to help rescue their fellow citizens from the grips of addiction.

These are the courageous souls who remind us that, for America, there is nothing beyond our reach. Nothing at all. (Applause.) Nothing.

We will defeat this crisis, we will protect our beautiful children, and we will ensure that tomorrow is better, brighter, stronger, and greater than ever before. Because as long as we have trust in our citizens, pride in our country, and faith in our God, we will not fail. (Applause.) Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. (Applause.) Thank you very much. Thank you very much.

Together, we will end the scourge of drug addiction in America once and for all. We will win. We will beat it. We’ll be tough. We’ll be smart. We’ll be kind. We’ll be loving. We’ll do whatever we have to do. But we’re going to win.

Thank you, God bless you, and God bless America. (Applause.) Thank you very much. Thank you.

END 3:14 P.M. EDT

Full Text Political Transcripts March 4, 2018: President Donald Trump’s remarks at Gridiron dinner

POLITICAL TRANSCRIPTS

TRUMP PRESIDENCY & 115TH CONGRESS:

President Donald Trump’s remarks at Gridiron dinner

Source: The Hill, 3-4-18

“Well, thank you very much. It’s an honor to be here and, I must tell you, that Melania and I are really thrilled. We really looked forward to this. … I didn’t know what to expect, but it’s really quality people … quality people. So, thank you very much.

It’s been really another calm week at the White House. We finally have it running like a fine-tuned machine. It’s fine-tuned. It’s a beautiful piece of work. … But before I get started, I wanted to apologize for arriving a little bit late. You know, we were late tonight because Jared could not get through security. … Ivanka, you’ve got to do something, … Jared—but I will tell you, he’s a good guy. He has—he has suffered. He is a great guy he really is.

I know the Gridiron is really an old tradition in Washington, been around a long time, and one that’s important to many of you in the media. So, I was very excited to receive this invitation and come here and ruin your evening in person. … My staff was concerned heading into this dinner that I couldn’t do self-deprecating humor. They were worried about it. They said, ‘Can you do this?’ And I told them not to worry. Nobody does self-deprecating humor better than I do. …  In fact, Orrin Hatch, Orrin said that ‘Donald Trump is the best at self-deprecating in the history of America, better than Washington and better than Lincoln.’ … Thank you, Orrin.

They told me my remarks tonight should be something like a late night routine. … Late night—are they the worst, by the way? We’re finally going to get one that’s going to come to our side. They will get very big ratings if they do that. … With all the television talent here, I think … you’d have figured that out. But I have to tell you, in preparation, I did what any good late night comic would do these days. I called Chuck Schumer and I asked him for some talking points.  Can you believe this? I also spoke to some of the funniest people around the White House starting with my number two, Mike Pence. … Love you Mike. … Some of you may think that Mike is not a comedian, but he is one of the best straight men you’re ever going to meet. … He is straight! …

I saw him the other day. We’re in line shaking hands with men and women. A woman came over to shake his hand and he said, ‘I’m sorry. I can’t do that. My wife is not here.’ I never saw anything like it. He’s … years ahead of his time. … Mike is doing a fantastic job as our vice president. He really is. He’s doing a fantastic job. Could not have asked for better. I really am very proud to call him, ‘The Apprentice.’

But lately what bothers me, I have to tell you, he’s showing a particularly keen interest in the news these days. He starts out each morning asking everybody, ‘Has he been impeached yet?’ …. You can’t be impeached when theres no crime! … Mike, put that down! … I thought that was going to get a much better … I said to Melania, ‘Do you think I should use that one? I don’t know.’ And then she said, Use it. It’s good.’ … So much for humor. You never know about humor do you. …

Steve Mnuchin … we saw him and his beautiful wife on stage. … When she asked whether or not she could sign the money also, I said, ‘Steve, you’ve got a lot to handle.’ I said, ‘You can’t do that Steve!’

America has a proud history of Treasury secretaries who sponsor the arts. Alexander Hamilton gave us so much. Andrew Mellon famously gave us the National Gallery—tremendous gift. Steve has given us the blockbuster movie ‘Lego Batman.’ … See, now that one I didn’t think was funny at all. …

But Attorney General Sessions is here with us tonight. … I offered him a ride over and he recused himself. … But that’s OK. We also have some of the leading lights of the media here including some folks from the failing New York Times. That sucker is failing! … I know we have our differences, but I also know that you have a very special place … in my heart. … The other day they had five stories on the front page of the New York Times and every one of them was totally different and each one of them was bad.

After all, you the New York Times are an icon. I’m a New York icon, you’re a New York icon, and the only difference is, I still own my buildings.

I especially have a place in my heart for Arthur Sulzberger. … Our stories are almost mirror images. I inherited a million dollars from my father—had a great father—gave me a million dollars and I turned it into billions. True story. Arthur inherited billions of dollars and he turned his into millions. Hello Arthur.

And it’s been a very tough year. Jeff Zucker’s here. … CNN, it lost a tremendous amount of credibility this year, but they also lost one of their true stars, the guy who got you the most scoops, inside info … your really very best reporter. There was nobody like him—Steve Bannon. That guy leaked more than the Titanic …

As I’m sure you’ve seen, we’re now riding very high in the polls, which is hard to believe considering I never get good press. But I just hit 50 in the Rasmussen poll.

A lot of people said I wouldn’t be able to do so with … losing my so-called chief strategist. … I just lost my strategist. … Just lost my strategist. It’s pretty bad, but somehow, we’re still doing great even without Omarosa. … By the way, I always knew, someday, you’re going to fire her. Is that the worst? By the way, Omarosa, you’re the worst! …

So many people have been leaving the White House. It’s actually been really exciting and invigorating. … I like turnover. I like chaos. It really is good.

Now the question everyone keeps asking is, ‘Who’s going to be the next to leave? Steve Miller or Melania?’ … That is terrible honey, but you love me, right? … I wont tell you what she said. … She said, ‘Behave.’ … Is that terrible?

By the way, she has been an incredible first lady. … Ohio, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, and all of them. There’s so many women in that audience. The women with signs, ‘We love our first lady.’ True, all of them, hundreds and hundreds of them during speeches, ‘We love high heels. We love everything.’ … These signs, they have pictures of shoes. … Remember when she was badly treated about wearing high heels when actually she had the sneakers in her bag? But they love our first lady.

I can tell you, despite what you’ve reported, we’ve had a lot of success this year. We really have … tremendous. Our tax plan has been a tremendous victory. … That is really turning out to be popular. Melania is even getting some major benefits from it. She can finally claim me as an adult dependent. …

And the White House is actually a warm, loving, and wonderful place. I’ve heard it’s cold. It’s not cold. It’s warm. It’s loving, you meet great people, wonderful people like yourselves. And I just don’t understand why everyone on the internet and in the media keeps screaming, ‘Hashtag Free Melania.’ Free Melania. … Like a number one hashtag. Free Melania. She’s actually having a great time.

Yes, are you? Oh, good, she’s having a great time. You’re doing a good job. You know, you can’t do a great job unless you enjoy it. It’s true. You people know that as great reporters. You love what you do, and if you didn’t love what you do, you wouldn’t do it well. …

Before we go any further, I want to just discuss the big financial story of the week. Ever since we announced our new tariffs, which actually is very popular with people because they’re tired of getting ripped off, many dying American industries have come to the White House asking for protection. They want help. They need protection. Unfortunately, I’m sorry, I fear it may be too late for the print media. That was pretty good though wasn’t it? … That’s another bomb that I thought was going to be great.

It might be hard for you to believe, but I do enjoy gatherings like these. They give me a chance to socialize with members of the opposition party. … Also great to see some Democrats here. … The opposition party, I’ve seen a few of them applauding tonight including Sen. Joe Manchin, who’s here.

And don’t worry, Joe. … He’s a good man. There aren’t any cameras this time Joe. And I won’t tell Chuck and Nancy what you’re doing. Because boy was he applauding me the other night. Right? At the State of the Union he was up there applauding. I don’t know who the hell he was catering to.

I thought my State of the Union address was actually extraordinary. One of the best ever given. in fact Luis Gutierrez was so overcome with emotion at how good this particular speech was that he had to leave the chamber. He left and wept.

I probably could have found a way to get the Democrats to stand and clap. … They didn’t. They were like frozen. I said black unemployment is at the lowest point in history. No emotion. They sat other than Manchin. He stood up. Thank you, Joe. He’s still paying the price for that. I said Hispanic unemployment is at the lowest level in history, record. There was no emotion. But I decided I wasn’t going to change anything. I wasn’t going to get them to stand. I didn’t know how. … I was not going to include a salute to Fidel Castro. They would have stood up. They would have cheered. …

And I know Mayor Mitch Landrieu feels right at home in Washington coming from Louisiana. I love Louisiana. … Not too bad right? Not bad Mitch! … It’s a beautiful swamp. I like that swamp. … That’s a much more legitimate swamp. But I have to say Mitch, that while you’re here in Washington, only one request. … They already hit him on the statues. I was going to say, ‘Don’t touch our statues.’ But they’ve already hit you three times on the statues. … But Mitch you did a good job tonight and honestly I love the way you finished. … I really did. I thought it was very appropriate. … Thank you.

And I never knew Tom Cotton was such a great comedian. We were laughing, the whole place. That was good tom. A rising star. How old are you now Tom? He’s 40. Wow, I better watch my back. You know … he’s a friend of mine, but in politics, you just don’t have these guys. … You were great tonight. I appreciate it. … Thank you Tom Cotton. And he is a rising star in our nation, not our party, in our nation. He’s got a great future—smart and a great guy.

I was hoping we’d also see Adam Schiff—wonderful guy. … Leaking Adam! … He’ll be in the middle of a meeting—what is he? In some committee, congressional committee, Mike what is it? Intelligence? Judiciary? What the hell committee? That’s the only thing, he doesn’t know what committee he’s on because he’s on the phone so much. He doesn’t have any time. ‘Hey, let’s call these guys.’ … Is that legal? Are you allowed to go to .. and just every half hour … ‘I got to go break the news.’ … Adam Schiff … He was going to come tonightand then he heard that this was not a televised event so he stayed home. He stayed home.

But Adam is constantly on television pushing the idea that somehow I would undermine democracy. … Undermine? I love democracy. But he thinks I’m going to undermine democracy. So, I have to tell him I have great respect for the various branches of government, the executive, the legislative, the judicial—very important—and last, Fox News. I have a lot of respect for Fox News. … Thank god for Fox News.

I often think that the Democrats would be better off if they learned a thing or two from us. They could learn from us. For instance, you might have noticed that some of the best lines from my campaign followed a certain pattern. ‘Drain the swamp!’ Remember that? … When I saw that I hated it. … Somebody brought that one down for me, I said, ‘This is so hokey.’ Drain the swamp. … This massive crowd, 25,000 people, and I said, .. Drain the Swamp!’ And they went crazy. I said, ‘Whoah.’ Then, I said It in the next speech, ‘Drain the swamp!’ And now, I love it. Drain the swamp!

But we had, ‘Drain The Swamp,’ we had, ‘Lock Her Up, we had, ‘Build The Wall.’ Build the wall! Nancy Pelosi has been trying to come up with a line that’s equal. And her line that she announced last week is, ‘Mow The Grass!’ It doesn’t work. ..

Mow the frickin’ grass. … That’s going to stop MS-13. … Mow that frickin’ grass! … Man, she’s crazy, but she’s a fine woman. She is. I actually like Nancy Pelosi. Can you believe that? Her and Maxine Waters. How about that one? Maxine Waters, ‘He must be impeached!’ That’s all she knows how to say, ‘He must be impeached!’ Impeached! … But he’s done nothing wrong. Doesn’t matter, they say. What has he done wrong? ‘I don’t know! You got to be impeached!’ … And then I say … I get in trouble for this, ‘She has to immediately, take an IQ test.’ And people go crazy. They went crazy/ But Maxine and Nancy and these people, there’s a lot of hatred. There’s so much hatred we have to stop Mike. We have to stop the hatred.

And it’s true … Nancy’s worth tens of millions of dollars and she’s a populist. … You know, she really considers herself that. And I really try to tell her that you can’t be a true populist unless you’re worth at least ten billion dollars … people like you better.

I don’t know how the hell they like me, but boy I love those people. I love them. I really do. … I understand that, in recognition of our massive tax cuts, Nancy suggested that—Oh, I’m not going to say this. The dessert should be crumb cake. Give me a break. You know, the word crumb is not working out well for Nancy.

On the way in tonight, someone asked me what I think about the Dreamers. I love the Dreamers. I do love the Dreamers. … I’ll be honest. … I really believe the Republicans want to solve this problem—DACA—more than the Democrats and certainly faster. So, we’re all working together and I hope that something’s going to happen. I really do. I  hope that something’s going to happen. …

We’re talking about the Dreamers and, quite honestly, Democrats can fantasize all they want about winning in 2020. Those are the Dreamers. … I’m a Dreamer also. …

There’s talk about Joe Biden, Sleepy Joe, getting into the race. You know what he said, ‘I want to take him behind the barn.’ … Just trust me, I would kick his ass. … Boy, would he be easy. Oh, would he be easy. … But Joe—give me a break. The guy who keeps making outrageous statements thinks he has a shot at being president? Guy makes outrageous statements. … He’s going to be president? He doesn’t have a shot.

And Oprah. Oh … here’s my next one. Oprah, I don’t think she’s ever been hit verbally yet. Right? She’s led a charmed life. She’s done a great job. … She used to love me …. I was on one of her last shows, ‘The Trump Family.’ We’re going to have to replay that for her. We’re going to have to. … She says she’ll run only if she gets the go ahead from the Almighty. All right Oprah, go ahead and run. …

And then we have Elizabeth Warren. … I watched her making a speech for Hillary. I said, ‘I think she’s losing all of the male vote for Hillary Clinton.’ It was brutal. It was mean and angry. Elizabeth Warren, who had a rough day last week trying to prove her heritage, She had a rough day. And she had a good suggestion though about easing world tensions. The world is quite tense. Some of this stuff should have happened over the last twenty years, but it didn’t. … But she said that Rex Tillerson and I should sit down with the leaders of Iran and North Korea and smoke a peace pipe. … I didn’t like that Pocahontas.

I won’t rule out direct talks with Kim Jong Un. I just won’t. As far as the risk of dealing with a madman is concerned, that’s his problem, not mine. … He must be a fine man. Do you think he’s a fine man? … Although, we did save the Olympics. President Moon gave us a lot of credit, said, ‘It was—it was President Trump that made the Olympics successful because there were a lot of people that wanted to go into that stadium with the potential of a problem—a big problem—and he gave us all a lot of credit. He said, ‘Without President Trump and his strong attitude they would have never called up and said, ‘Hey, we’d love to be in the Olympics together.’

And that’s true. … Whether people want to hear it or not, they had a very successful Olympics. That was heading for disaster. They weren’t selling tickets. … It was heading for disaster and now we’re talking. And they, by the way, called up a couple of days ago and said, ‘We would like to talk.’ And I said, ‘So would we, but you have to de-nuke, you have to de-nuke.’

So, let’s see what happens. Let’s see what happens. You know when the media said … and when I said, ‘My button is bigger than yours and mine works.’ Everyone gave me a hard time, what a terrible thing. They didn’t say what he said. He said, ‘I have a button on my desk and I am prepared to use it.’ Nobody ever said that. So, my statement was in response, but maybe positive things are happening. I hope that’s true and I say that in all seriousness. I hope that’s true … But we will be meeting and we’ll see if anything positive happens. It’s been a long time. …. It’s a problem that should have been fixed a long time ago … very far down the road. …

i know there’s been a lot of talk about Twitter and social media this year. But it really can be an important form of modern day communication. If I didn’t have Twitter how would Gen. Kelly and Gen, McMaster know what it is that they’re supposed to say that day. They wouldn’t know. They’d have no idea.

There’s been a lot of criticism of John Kelly in the press, which i think is very very unfair. He’s doing an amazing job. He even told me he would let Ivanka visit the Oval Office when she gets home from representing us in the Olympics and she did so. Ivanka did you enjoy your visit? I hope so. That was very nice and by the way Ivanka did an incredible job representing our country at the Olympics. She did.

Many people have asked me how my time as a reality TV star prepared me for the presidency, the truth is there’s very little overlap between the two. Very little. In one job, I had to manage a cutthroat cast of characters desperate for TV time, totally unprepared for their … jobs, and each week afraid of having their asses fired. In the other job, I was the host of a smash television hit. … Television’s so easy compared to this. …

I know we all came here tonight to have fun and tell jokes, but I also think we need to discuss the issues. Issues are very important. … For example, we’ve got a new plan to tackle global warming, one of my favorite subjects. We’re going to reduce the carbon footprint when we travel by shrinking the press pool so that we only have room for Sean Hannity, Lou Dobbs, and Judge Judy. …

I better wrap it up. I have to be up early tomorrow morning—six o’clock—to be listening to Fox and Friends. … But I do want to say this is one of the best times I can ever remember having with the media. This might be the most fun I’ve had since watching your faces on election night. … I apologize. Years, years, years taken  off your life. Oh, John King, with that beautiful red map. His hand was shaking toward the end. … I love the way he uses that map. He’s good at it. … And then it was Michigan. Remember they wouldn’t call Pennsylvania? There was one percent of the … vote to go in Pennsylvania. It was like 11 o’clock. One percent of the vote to go, they wouldn’t call it. And if i lost even one of the votes, I won by a lot. They wouldn’t call it. So instead, they called Wisconsin. And then, John King, remember, ‘The Winner of the great state of Michigan.’ He’s going Michigan. He’s like, ‘Hey Trump won Michigan, this can’t be happening.’ And that hand was up. …

Look, whether you like me or not, you have to say that was good. That was exciting. … Lot of tears were in this room. You’re not supposed to cry. Mike are they supposed to be crying? If somebody wins or somebody … they’re supposed to be a little impartial. Let’s be a little bit more impartial. …

But you know, I’ll tell you what, I do have a lot of respect for a lot of the people in this room. Even people that have been very strong opponents, I’ve developed a lot of respect. Fairness is important to me, but you know, you’ve got your point of view. And a lot of you cover things very squarely and there are few professions that i respect more. And I’d like to thank the Gridiron Club and Foundation—foundation does an incredible job—for this wonderful evening. I want to thank all of the amazing speakers and, really, performers. Some very good performers … they really are. …

I want to thank the press for all you do to support and sustain our democracy. I mean that. I mean that. Some incredible people in the press … brilliant, powerful, smart, and fair people in the press. And I want to thank you. My greatest wish is that we can all work together to make America safe, and just, and free for all Americans. We have a great country and we all, together, will make it even better. Thank you all very much. This is a great honor thank you.”

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