Donald Trump’s presidency is over. On 20 January at midday, Joe Biden will be sworn in as the 46th president bringing to an end four years of the most unpredictable, divisive and tumultuous administration in US history.
To mark the occasion Trump did what he does best, by giving a farewell speech full of inaccuracies and false claims which by this stage we’ve almost come to expect from the president.
Trump’s last ever speech as the president was just shy of 20 minutes and started with the boast that he had "made America great again for all Americans" and was “truly proud of what we achieved together.” This comes just weeks after a mob of his most violent supporters stormed the Capitol building, leaving five people dead.
"My fellow Americans, four years ago we launched a great national effort to rebuild our country, to renew its spirit, and to restore the allegiance of this government to its citizens. In short, we embarked on a mission to make America great again for all Americans. As I conclude my term as the 45th President of the United States, I stand before you truly proud of what we have achieved together."
Trump moves on to thanking the people who have aided him along the way. These mostly include his family but also Mike Pence, who was targetted in the violent insurrection on 6th January and publicly called out by Trump for not denouncing the election results.
Trump did condemn the violence which rocked the US capital and called on people to ‘rise above the partisan rancor.' This despite saying that he loved his supporters who were attacking the Capitol building whilst the riot was going on.
“All Americans were horrified by the assault on our capital. Political violence is an attack on everything we cherish as Americans. It can never be tolerated. Now more than ever, we must unify around our shared values and rise above the partisan rancor and forge our common destiny.”
Trump continues to brag about his so-called ‘achievements’ which are apparently “more than anyone thought possible.”
Trump moves on to talk about the pandemic and claims that people are calling his response to Covid and the distribution of the vaccine a “medical miracle” and gives his administration a slap on the back for developing the vaccine, something which they definitely did not do.
“They said it couldn’t be done, but we did it. They called it a medical miracle. And that’s what they’re calling it right now, a medical miracle. Another administration would have taken three, four, five, maybe even up to 10 years to develop a vaccine. We did it in nine months.”
Trump goes on to praise the controversial ICE agency as ‘heroic’ for enforcing some of his most dangerous and inhumane policies at the US/Mexico border.
“We have given our brave border agents and heroic ICE officers the tools they need to do their jobs better than they have ever done before and to enforce our laws and keep America safe. We proudly leave the next administration with the strongest and most robust border security measures ever put into place.”
Without a shred of evidence, Trump claims the world “respects” the United States again.
A curious part of Trump’s farewell speech was him bragging about killing the Iranian general Qassem Soleimani, an act that almost caused a global conflict.
“We stood up to the oppressive Iranian regime and killed the world’s top terrorist, Iranian butcher, Qassem Soleimani.”
Trump adds that he hopes his legacy was putting the needs of the American people first and taking on the “hardest fights.” We’re not sure about that one Donald.
“I did not seek the easiest course. By far, it was actually the most difficult. I did not seek the path that would get the least criticism. I took on the tough battles, the hardest fights, the most difficult choices because that’s what you elected me to do. Your needs were my first and last unyielding focus. This, I hope, will be our greatest legacy.”
Just months after he order the military to tear gas American citizens protesting against racial injustice in the US, Trump brazenly claims that “everyone is entitled to be treated with respect.”
“We fought for the principle that every citizen is entitled to equal dignity, equal treatment, and equal rights because we are all made equal by God. Everyone is entitled to be treated with respect, to have their voice heard, and to have the government listen. You are loyal to your country and my administration was always loyal to you.”
Despite saying just moments before that he had ‘made American great again’ he then contradicts himself by expressing his fear of America losing its confidence.
“As the world’s most powerful nation, America faces constant threats and challenges from abroad. But the greatest danger we face is a loss of confidence in ourselves, a loss of confidence in our national greatness. A nation is only as strong as its spirit. We are only as dynamic as our pride. We are only as vibrant as the faith that beats in the hearts of our people. No nation can long thrive that loses faith in its own values, history, and heroes for these are the very sources of our unity and our vitality.”
Trump who has been recently banned from nearly ever form of social media going then rallies against the oppression of free speech.
“Only if we forget who we are and how we got here could we ever allow political censorship and blacklisting to take place in America. It’s not even thinkable. Shutting down free and open debate violates our core values and most enduring traditions.”
Trump then recount the many places he has visited in the last four years (neglects to mention North Korea) and claims for the entire time that he was fighting for the American people.
“From a great hall of Muslim leaders in Riyadh to a great square of Polish people in Warsaw, from the floor of the Korean Assembly to the podium at the United Nations General Assembly, and from the forbidden city in Beijing to the shadow of Mount Rushmore, I fought for you. I fought for your family. I fought for our country. Above all, I fought for America and all it stands for, and that is safe, strong, proud, and free.”
Trump closes his last ever speech as POTUS with a line made famous by his eldest son’s girlfriend, Kimberly Guilfoyle, “the best is yet to come.”
And that was that. Four years after non-stop whingeing, controversy, divisive rhetoric and downright weirdness Trump’s last ever speech as president ends on a whimper, not a bang. Can’t say that we are gonna miss these.