President Donald Trump gave a rousing Independence Day speech during his “Salute to America” event Thursday honoring those who have served in the military and touting the “American spirit” that “runs through the veins of every American patriot.”
The speech, given from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, was about 45 minutes long. It included not only a salute to the U.S. military but also flyovers by military aircraft.
“Today, we come together as one nation with this very special ‘Salute to America.’ We celebrate our history, our people, and the heroes who proudly defend our flag — the brave men and women of the United States military,” Trump said.
The president went on to talk about American exceptionalism and the “spirit” of the “American patriot.”
“That same American spirit that emboldened our founders has kept us strong throughout our history. To this day that spirit runs through the veins of every American patriot. It lives on in each and every one of you here today” Trump said.
“It is the spirit, daring and defiance, excellence and adventure, courage and confidence, loyalty and love that built this country into the most exceptional nation in the history of the world, and our nation is stronger today than it ever was before.”
The president also tipped his hat to the people who have changed the culture throughout history, such as the civil rights leaders, suffragists and abolitionists.
“As we gather this evening in the joy of freedom, we remember that we all share a truly extraordinary heritage. Together, we are part of one of the greatest stories ever told — the story of America,” he said.
Trump thanked local law enforcement officials, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Border Patrol agents, as well.
“Our nation has always honored the heroes who serve our communities, first responders, police, sheriffs, ICE, Border Patrol and all of the brave men and women of law enforcement,” he said.
While there were some concerns that few people would show up, especially with the threat of inclement weather, those concerns quickly faded as droves of people arrived for the event.
Several pictures posted on Twitter show the large crowd.
The view looking out into the crowd from the Lincoln Memorial. No word yet on if weather will affect the planned flyovers during/after President Trump’s speech. #SaluteToAmerica pic.twitter.com/GDTVhOET7c
— Omar Jimenez (@OmarJimenezCNN) July 4, 2019
Crowd at Lincoln Memorial right now for Trump speech pic.twitter.com/vooUvC4odP
— Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) July 4, 2019
The president tweeted about the size of the crowd Thursday evening.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 5, 2019
“A great crowd of tremendous Patriots this evening, all the way back to the Washington Monument!” Trump wrote.
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