President Donald Trump spoke at the 2017 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) to an enthused crowd, his speech featured a lot of the usual Trumpian themes that people have come to expect from him. Here are the five biggest moments from his CPAC speech.
1. Trump doubled down on his tweet calling the media "the enemy of the people" while calling for an end to anonymous sources. "A few days ago I called the fake news the enemy of the people," Trump said. "And they are. They are the enemy of the people."
Trump justified his statement by smacking the media for not having reliable "sources, they just make 'em up when there are none."
"I saw one story recently where they said, 'Nine people have confirmed,'" Trump said. "There're no nine people. I don't believe there was one or two people. Nine people. And I said, 'Give me a break.' Because I know the people, I know who they talk to. There were no nine people."
Trump was referring to the Washington Post's report that stirred controversy about former national security advisor Mike Flynn's exchanges with the Russian ambassador. The Washington Post stood by their report after Trump's speech.
Later on, Trump declared, "Let there be no more sources," a statement that at face value seems crazy because each article needs sources, but Trump eventually said, "And they shouldn't use sources. They should put the name of the person. You will see stories dry up like you've never seen before." Trump was conflating "sources" with anonymous sources.
He also called CNN the "Clinton News Network," which naturally drew applause.
2. Trump praised Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) on trade–and the crowd applauded. "A lot of Bernie people voted for Trump, you know why?" Trump said. "Because he's right on one issue; trade. He was right about trade. Our country is being absolutely devastated with bad trade deals. So he was right about that, but we got a lot of Bernie support. So actually, I like Bernie. OK? I like Bernie."
The crowd applauded for this position that is blatantly out of line with conservative values.
3. Trump signaled that he intends to bring people "off of welfare." Trump stated his intentions for "tax reform" and that while some regulation was necessary, "we don't need 75 percent of the repetitive, horrible regulations that hurt companies, hurt jobs, make us non-competitive overseas with other companies from other countries."
After saying that there were already examples of major companies expanding in the country, Trump declared, "It's time for all Americans to get off of welfare and get back to work."
He didn't expand on this, so it's unclear if he was signaling support for welfare reform or if he simply thought that tax cuts and repealing regulations would be enough to bring people off welfare. Regardless, his line received applause.
4. Trump said that he has proposed a large military build-up. Trump stated that his administration has sent in "a massive budget request for our beloved military" that will result in "substantially upgrading all of our military."
"It will be one of the greatest military build-ups in American history," Trump said. "No one will dare question as they have been because we're very depleted, very, very depleted. Sequester. Sequester. Nobody will dare question our military might again. We believe in peace through strength and that's what we will have."
5. Towards the end of his speech, Trump made clear that "allegiance to America" is what "unites us all." "There's one allegiance that unites us all, and that is to America," Trump said. "America, it's the allegiance to America."
No matter our background or income, or geography, we're all citizens of this blessed land. And no matter our color or the blood -- the color of the blood we bleed, it's the same red blood of great, great patriots. Remember, great patriots.
We all salute with pride, the same American flag, and we all are equal -- totally equal in the eyes of almighty God, we're equal.
(H/T: The Right Scoop)
Follow Aaron Bandler on Twitter @bandlersbanter.