'The Stock Market Just Hit a Record High. Unemployment Is the Lowest It’s Been in 17 Years. So You’re Fighting for Something Real, You’re Fighting for Something Good.'
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On his first Thanksgiving as Commander-in-Chief Donald Trump teleconferenced with several different branches of the U.S. Armed Forces, including the elite 82nd Airborne Division of the U.S. Army, an airborne infantry fighting team so accomplished they are considered among them most highly-trained in the world. The president spoke to the different groups of soldiers from his Mar-a-Lago golf resort in Florida for a total of seven minutes combined, according to the traveling press pool, before he kicked the media out of the room. Golf Club members could be seen sitting outside the room as the president spoke.
"You’re very, very special people to me, and to everyone in this country, that I can tell you," Trump said, according to pool reports. "Surrounding me is a lot of press, better me than you, believe me fellas, better me than you...It’s an honor to speak with you all, to give God thanks for the blessing of freedom, heroes, tremendous courage, Very, very special people. It doesn’t get more special."
Trump told members of the 82nd Airborne, "I have to say just directly to the folks in Afghanistan: everybody’s talking about the progress you’ve made in the last few months since I opened it up. We opened it up, we said go ahead, we’re going to fight to win. We’re not fighting anymore to just walk around, we’re fighting to win, and you people are really, you’ve turned it around over the last three to four months like nobody’s seen, and they are talking about it, so thank you very much. Brave, incredible fighters."
He also addressed the Direct Support Team Gulf of the Marine Corps Special Operations, 2nd Marine Raider Battalion, Navy sailors aboard the USS Monterey, and members of the 74th Expeditionary Fighters Squadron.
When he got to members of the Coast Guard near Kuwait, Trump reverted to his default talking points, echoing one of his tweets from Thanksgiving morning:
HAPPY THANKSGIVING, your Country is starting to do really well. Jobs coming back, highest Stock Market EVER, Military getting really strong, we will build the WALL, V.A. taking care of our Vets, great Supreme Court Justice, RECORD CUT IN REGS, lowest unemployment in 17 years....!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 23, 2017
"For each of you," Trump told the Coast Guard, "I know it’s hard to be away from home at this time of the year. We’re doing well at home. The economy is doing really great," he said.
The Commander-in-Chief then drove with the First Lady to U.S. Coast Guard Lake Worth Inlet Station in Riviera Beach, Florida. They arrived at 10:08 AM. At 10:18 the president began speaking to 50 to 60 Coast Guard members.
WATCH: Pres. Trump meets with the U.S. Coast in Florida on Thanksgiving, praises them for their rescue efforts after hurricanes. pic.twitter.com/DXq7K15Srk— MSNBC (@MSNBC) November 23, 2017
“The country’s doing really well,” Trump said.
“Incredible people, you’ve done an incredible job,” Trump told them, praising and thanking them for their work saving lives during Hurricane Harvey, as the First Lady wished them a “Happy Thanksgiving!”
And then, he told them what he thinks they're really fighting for. Not freedom. Not democracy. Not equality. And not peace. But "something real" and "something good": a "record high stock market" and low unemployment.
"We're not fighting anymore to just walk around."— NBC News (@NBCNews) November 23, 2017
President Trump speaks to troops from his resort in Mar-a-Lago on Thanksgiving. pic.twitter.com/qJs1NsBqn8
"When you come back, you are going to see with the jobs and companies coming back into our country and the stock market just hit a record high. Unemployment is the lowest it’s been in 17 years. So you’re fighting for something real, you’re fighting for something good. A lot of things have happened with our country over the last very short period of time, and they’re really good, they’re really good. I especially like saying that companies are starting to come back. Now we’re working on tax cuts — big, fat, beautiful tax cuts. And hopefully we’ll get that and then you’re really going to see things happen.”
Trump also said the high stock market is good for their 401k's. The Coast Guard does not offer a 401(k) plan, although it does offer something similar.
At 10:25, just 7 minutes later, he finished speaking, and handed out sandwiches.
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