Trump defends policies, applauds administration’s coronavirus response in White House RNC speech

By KYW Newsradio 1060
PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — On the final night of the Republican National Convention, President Donald Trump formally accepted the party’s nomination. He delivered a 70-minute speech in front of a crowd on the South Lawn of the White House — an unprecedented scene in modern American history.

After being introduced by daughter and adviser Ivanka Trump, the president hit the stage. 

“My fellow Americans, tonight, with a heart full of gratitude and boundless optimism, I proudly accept this nomination for president of the United States,” he said in front of about 2,000 supporters, sitting side-by-side, most without masks on.

Trump laid out a defense of his record and handling of the economy, immigration, foreign policy, and his support of law enforcement and the military. He also continued the running theme of the RNC: A Joe Biden victory would lead to chaos and lawlessness, he said. 

“We have spent the last four years reversing the damage Joe Biden inflicted over the last 47 years,” said Trump. 

He continued to project himself as the “law-and-order” candidate, protecting “the American way of life.”

“Your vote will decide whether we protect law-abiding Americans or whether we give free rein to violent anarchists and agitators and criminals who threaten our citizens,” Trump said.

The RNC overlapped with the ongoing civil unrest in Kenosha, Wisconsin, sparked by the police shooting of Black man Jacob Blake. Trump only mentioned the city’s name once and lumped it in with other Democratic-run cities he has been critical of. 

The president also defended his administration’s coronavirus response.

“We are delivering life-saving therapies and will produce a vaccine before the end of the year — or maybe even sooner,” he promised. 

So far, nearly 6 million Americans have been infected with COVID-19, and 180,000 have died. 

And, just as Trump tweeted during Biden’s speech last week at the Democratic National Convention, the former vice president did the same Thursday night. 

“From the moment COVID-19 emerged, President Trump downplayed the threat it posed, refused to listen to the experts, and failed to take action to contain its spread,” he tweeted. “Now, we’re paying the price.”

From the moment COVID-19 emerged, President Trump downplayed the threat it posed, refused to listen to the experts, and failed to take action to contain its spread.Now, we’re paying the price.

— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) August 28, 2020

Outside of the White House, hundreds of protesters tried to drown out the president’s convention speech with noise. Government watchdog groups and Democrats have been very critical of the Trump campaign’s use of the White House during the convention, saying the administration violated the Hatch Act, which is supposed to draw a line between political and governmental functions. 

The last sitting president to accept a party’s nomination from the White House was Franklin D. Roosevelt ahead of his third term.