President Trump’s inaugural speech wasn’t about Trump. He didn’t talk about why he appealed to his supporters, he talked about Americans, specifically the forgotten Americans. He talked about the real threat that Washington elites pose to our nation and to our Republic and how it was finally time to put America and its citizens first. He rocked the establishment who were sitting behind him in disbelief, and he made the everyday Americans Hillary claimed to be a “champion” of cheer!
This wasn’t a smooth-talking politician inviting us to climb aboard his fancy word ship for a voyage beyond the stars. He did not call upon the angels. Instead, he spoke in dark tones to the forgotten man.
“The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer,” Trump said. “Everyone is listening to you now.”
He began by punching the elites right in the mouth — the bipartisan Washington establishment sitting up there with him.
“For too long, a small group in our nation’s Capital has reaped the rewards of government while the people have borne the cost,” Trump said.
“Washington flourished, but the people did not share in its wealth. Politicians prospered, but the jobs left and the factories closed. The establishment protected itself, but not the citizens of our country.
“Their victories have not been your victories; their triumphs have not been your triumphs. And while they celebrated in our nation’s capital, there was little to celebrate for struggling families all across our land.
“That all changes — starting right here and right now, because this moment is your moment: It belongs to you.”
Trump’s campaign was nothing if not audacious, but to see him say such things in front of the Capitol, right to the establishment’s face as those sitting behind him wore those tight smiles, was beyond audacious. It was Jacksonian.
You could feel Washington trembling. But you could also feel the establishment wise men — like Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and the K Street boys who buy them all with campaign checks, Democrats and Republicans — smirking and telling themselves a Washington truth:
Fresh presidents talk a lot about change, and finally, when they’re not fresh anymore, the presidents leave town, humbled, while the insiders remain.
It was that beginning that was astonishing, his declaration of war on the establishment, especially as they all sat there with him, with former Presidents Carter and Bush and Clinton and Obama looking on, outgoing first lady Michelle Obama frowning, Hillary Clinton icy and distant.
Bush bobbed his head and smiled as if in pain. Bill Clinton’s eyes were two frozen blue grapes, locked in a thousand-yard stare. But what he was looking at inside his own head, I wouldn’t ever want to know.
“We’ve defended other nations’ borders while refusing to defend our own,” Trump said, “and spent trillions and trillions of dollars overseas while America’s infrastructure has fallen into disrepair and decay.
“We’ve made other countries rich while the wealth, strength and confidence of our country has dissipated over the horizon. … The wealth of our middle class has been ripped from their homes and then redistributed all across the world.”
The Bush Republicans and neoconservatives and European elites won’t like his “America First” message one bit.
Predictably, the left hated his speech. They love the working-class hero in the abstract, unless working-class heroes dare to support Trump. Then the left mocks them. The culture clash between liberal commentators and Trump voters has gotten so petty that I’ve even seen Trump voters mocked as fools for spelling mistakes.
They’re not fools. They’re not deplorable. They’re hardworking Americans, people who sent their children to our wars, people who were pushed aside by our politics, slapped down by our economy and abused by Democrats, Republicans and the very elites who formed the establishment.
They were once the forgotten. But now their guy is president of the United States.
For entire story: Chicago Tribune
Watch Trump’s full inauguration speech here: