Category: President TRUMP

Live: Honoring Late George H. W. Bush – Washington, D.C. – 12/3/2018

 

 

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LIVE: G20 SUMMIT – Buenos Aires, Argentina – 11/30/2018

Our First Lady of the United States, Melania Trump, Brings American Treasures – Christmas at the White House! November 2018

Here are more details about Christmas at the White House 2018 with Our Dear First Lady, Melania Trump.  Merry Christmas America! #MerryChristmas2018  

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The First Family is celebrating their second Christmas in the White House.  This year’s theme, “American Treasures” honors the unique heritage of America.  Designed by First Lady Melania Trump, the White House shines with the spirit of patriotism.  This home, held in trust for all Americans, displays the many splendors found across our great Nation.

 

 

In the East Wing, the Gold Star Family tree returns.  Decorated by Gold Star families, this tree honors all our troops and families who have sacrificed greatly to protect our freedoms.  Gold stars and patriotic ribbon decorate the tree and visitors are encouraged to write messages to their loved ones who are on duty or abroad on the digital tablets provided.

More than 40 topiary trees line the East colonnade as guests make their way toward the East Garden Room, where the First Family Christmas card and ornament are on display.  The Library remembers some of America’s most cherished authors, housing over 2,700 American classics.  Four trees have been tucked away in each corner of the Library displaying the White House Historical Association’s 2018 ornament honoring President Harry S. Truman.

The Vermeil room displays two trees that sparkle in hues of blues and golds amongst the vermeil on display for all to see.  Inside the China Room are three tables, all replicas from previous state dinners using pieces from the White House permanent collection.  They highlight different eras of state dinners.  The Theodore Roosevelt Administration, John F. Kennedy Administration, and Donald J. Trump Administration are all represented.

The East Room highlights the diversity and ingenuity of American architecture and design with four custom mantelpieces showcasing the skylines of New York City, St. Louis, Chicago, and San Francisco.  72 handmade paper ornaments representing six regions across America hang from four 14-foot Noble fir trees.  For the 51st year, the White House Crèche will also be on display.

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As one makes their way through the Green Room, Americans are reminded of the country’s bounty and harvest.  A variety of fruits, vegetables, and grains adorn the tree centered in the room, as well as the garland on the mantel.  In the Blue Room, the official White House Christmas tree measures a soaring 18 feet tall and is dressed in over 500 feet of blue velvet ribbon embroidered in gold with each State and territory.  Moving into the Red Room, guests will be able to celebrate children through the décor, which displays ways in which children can excel in their own path.

The State Dining Room is a celebration of our country’s national symbols, including the bald eagle, the rose, and the oak tree.  The space is also host to this year’s gingerbread house, showcasing the full expanse of the National Mall: the Capitol, the Lincoln Memorial, the Jefferson Memorial, the Washington Monument, and, of course, the White House.

Crossing into the Grand Foyer and Cross Hall, patriotism, the heart of America, takes center stage with more than 14,000 red ornaments hanging from 29 trees.  The choice of red is an extension of the pales, or stripes, found in the presidential seal designed by our Founding Fathers.  It’s a symbol of valor and bravery.

“This is a joyous time of year when we decorate the White House for the Christmas Season,” said First Lady Melania Trump. “Our theme honors the heart and spirit of the American people.  Thank you to the many volunteers and staff who worked hard to decorate the halls of the People’s House in Christmas cheer.  On behalf of my family, we wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.”

Throughout the month of December, the White House will host more than 100 open houses and many receptions.  More than 30,000 visitors will walk the halls taking part in public tours.

Learn more about Christmas at the White House. 

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Live: President Trump Participates in the “United States, Mexico & Canada Agreement” (USMCA) Signing Ceremony – Buenos Aires, Argentina – 11/30/2018

This morning we will watch President Trump, Live from Buenos Aires, Argentina.  He will sign the United States, Mexico & Canada Agreement (USMCA).  This trade agreement will terminate NAFTA.

The president argued the USMCA focuses on fairness and reciprocity. The deal sets new protections for labor, the environment, and intellectual property.

He added, the deal will close job-killing loopholes, which he says will be a great victory for American farmers, manufacturers and autoworkers.

Despite the agreement, President Trump confirmed U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum imports will remain in place.  President Trump said the deal will terminate NAFTA, which he criticized as one of the worst trade deals ever made.

He plans to sign the deal next month before sending it to Congress for approval. (Source:  One America News Network)

USMCA a Trade Deal for the 21st Century

 

One of the core promises that swept President Donald Trump into office was that he would renegotiate better deals for the United States with our traditional trading partners. With the announcement of a new trade pact among the United States, Mexico and Canada, we welcomed the tremendous news that the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) will be, if approved by Congress, replaced by a much stronger agreement. Known as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), the package will be important for American workers and our economy as a whole, including the agricultural sector, which counts Mexico and Canada in our top three trading partners.

I have long said that I believe our country is located in the best neighborhood on Earth – North America – with valuable allies to our north and south. Though the old NAFTA agreement was considered a generally positive compact for agriculture, there was certainly room for much-needed improvement. Under USMCA, we have created new rules to help our farmers, ranchers and workers better face the challenges of the 21st century economy, which will secure greater access to the Mexican and Canadian markets and maintain and improve the highly productive integrated agricultural relationships we have as nations.

The agreement with Mexico came first, near the end of August, and includes a number of provisions sought by the United States. Importantly, 21st century innovations in agricultural biotechnology are addressed for the first time, including cutting-edge processes like gene editing. These innovations serve as a template for agreements in the future. And we mutually pledge to work together to reduce trade-distorting policies, increase transparency and ensure nondiscriminatory treatment in grading of agricultural products. In addition, the United States and Mexico agreed not to use so-called “geographic indicators” to restrict the marketing of certain cheeses under common names, such as provolone, Swiss, or ricotta, which the European Union had wanted to restrict.

The second piece of the USMCA puzzle was the negotiation with Canada, where key sticking points centered on dairy issues and were among the last to be cleared. Notably, as one of the president’s top goals, the new agreement will eliminate Canada’s unfair “Class 6” and “Class 7” milk pricing schemes, in which Canada has used low-priced products to undercut United States dairy sales in Canada and other international markets. The deal will also crack open additional access to United States dairy into Canada, including products like fluid milk, cream, butter, skim milk and cheese, and will also preserve and expand critical access for United States poultry and egg producers. America’s wheat farmers also get a big win. A reform of Canada’s discriminatory wheat grading process will help United States wheat growers along the border become more competitive. These are all significant victories for American agriculture.

As we celebrate this breakthrough, it is worth noting that there were many detractors who said it could not be done. But the emergence of an agreement is further proof that President Trump’s trade negotiation strategy is working. To strike the best deals possible for the United States, the president has shown that he is willing to walk away from the bargaining table if he feels our country is being unfairly treated. In the case of USMCA, the president’s approach resulted in earnest negotiations among the three nations and a final package which is beneficial for all three countries.

This is not the first major step forward in international trade under the Trump administration, nor do we feel it will be the last. Before President Trump successfully concluded USCMA, he made good on his promise to revise and improve KORUS, the trade pact with the Republic of Korea. Add to these achievements the president’s recent announcement of his intention to negotiate a trade deal with Japan – a significant market for United States agriculture exports that, until recently, had rejected talks of a bilateral agreement with the United States – and growing optimism for a successful trade deal with the European Union, and it is easy to see the dominoes falling. The president is committed to achieving good trade deals for America – including our current issues with China, which I believe we will surmount as well.

The bottom line is this: Free, fair and expanded trade among nations is good for the American economy and our highly productive farmers, ranchers, foresters and producers. The newly minted USMCA goes in the win column for President Trump and his negotiating team, led by our United States Trade Representative, Ambassador Robert Lighthizer. Our economy, and American agriculture, will be better off for it.

This article appeared in The Spokesman-Review on October 17, 2018. 

The new United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement includes key victories for American manufacturers, agriculture, businesses, and workers.

BUSINESS INSIDER: Trump’s New Trade Deal with Canada and Mexico is Winning Early Praise

“Early reviews of President Donald Trump’s new trade pact with Mexico and Canada are positive … The refreshed version of NAFTA will include increased labor protections for workers, increased standards for duty-free auto shipments, increased access to the Canadian dairy market for US farmers, and a slight tweak to the deal’s dispute-resolution system.”

FOX BUSINESS: US Stocks Surge as US, Canada, Mexico Reach Trade Deal

“Stocks surged Monday as Canada and the U.S. reached a trade deal that also includes Mexico, and key changes at the top of major corporations boosted investor sentiment.”

THE WASHINGTON TIMES: Trump Trade Deal with Canada, Mexico Gets American Farmers’ Stamp of Approval

“The Trump administration’s new three-way trade deal to replace NAFTA got a thumbs-up from American farmers. Americans for Farmers & Families spokesman Casey Guernsey, a seventh-generation farmer, said the three-way deal showed Mr. Trump remembered his promise ‘to stand up for rural America. … After years of declining income and months of trade uncertainty, farmers desperately needed a win, and today the Trump administration delivered it,’ he said. ‘While eager to learn the details, I hope that Congress will use this positive momentum to bring this important agreement over the finish line.’”

WASHINGTON EXAMINER: Canada Gave Ground on the Key Issue of Dairy in New Trade Agreement

“Canada gave ground to the U.S. in the North American Free Trade Agreement replacement deal agreed to Sunday by rolling back protections for its domestic dairy industry, providing a victory to American farmers on one of the key points of negotiation.”

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: New NAFTA Shows Trump’s Trade Strategy for Balancing Labor, Business Interests

“The Teamsters have nice things to say about the new North American Free Trade Agreement. Big banks can also claim a victory. … Many labor officials say they’ve been pleasantly surprised with strong language in the agreement pushing Mexico to bolster its unions, including protecting ‘the right to strike.’ American unions have argued that the lack of such provisions in the original NAFTA meant the pact encouraged factories to relocate south of the border in search of cheaper workers.”

NEW YORK POST EDITORIAL BOARD: NAFTA 2.0: Trump Delivers on Another Big Promise

“[I]t’s hard to argue with the result: Trump has once again delivered on a campaign promise that his rivals called a fantasy. A politician who does what he says he’ll do: Imagine that.”

THE VIRGINIAN-PILOT EDITORIAL BOARD: Trade Pact Rings up Trump Victory

“Apparently those hard-line tactics worked, and the president appears well within his right to chalk this up as a victory. Though details were still being finalized for release, it appears that American farmers will secure greater access to Canadian dairy markets…”

TOM ROGAN IN WASHINGTON EXAMINER: From NAFTA to USMCA, Trump Just Got a Win for America

“Whether you’re a Democrat, Republican, or an independent, you should welcome President Trump’s announcement of the new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA, on Monday. A replacement for NAFTA, the USMCA will increase U.S. access to Canadian markets and ensure greater centering of the car industry in North America.”

STEVE CORTES IN REAL CLEAR POLITICS: Make North America Great Again

“The USMCA framework showcases the practical genius of our negotiator and entrepreneur-in-chief, President Trump.  Unlike the lawyers and bureaucrats who dominate most high political offices, as a global businessman Trump implicitly understands the predicament that American workers and firms face competing against a commercially abusive China.”

CHRISTIAN WHITON ON FOX NEWS: Trump Has Just Revolutionized Global Trade by Replacing NAFTA with USMCA

“Trump administration negotiators reached a major agreement with Canada on trade over the weekend.  The breakthrough, which came on the heels of an earlier deal with Mexico, vindicates President Trump’s tough approach to reforming trade and will mark a fundamental turning point for American jobs and global power.”

LIZ PEEK IN THE HILL: Trump’s ‘America First’ Policy Scores a Big Win with New NAFTA Deal

“The new NAFTA, which will be called the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), secured some advantages for the U.S. while also giving in to certain Canadian priorities. … More broadly, the new NAFTA shows the world that the Trump White House may succeed in bringing home better trade pacts.”

President Trump and First Lady Melania Participated in the National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, Washington, DC – USA – 11/28/2018 – MERRY CHRISTMAS!

 

Remarks by President Trump at the National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony

Issued on:

 

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.  Thank you very much.  And, Ryan, I want to thank you for doing such a beautiful job all throughout the season.  And welcome everyone.  Merry Christmas.  Special time of the year.

Melania and I are thrilled to be here today as we celebrate one of the nation’s most cherished traditions: the lighting of the National Christmas Tree.

Tonight’s ceremony is only possible because of the hard work of the many talented individuals.  They were working late at night.  They were working early in the morning.  They were working all the time.  And my sincere thanks to everyone at the National Park Service and the National Park Foundation.  Thank you very much.  Appreciate it.  (Applause.)

And let me also extend my deep appreciation to all of tonight’s wonderful entertainers.  There’s great talent.  They’re going on to big things, many of them.  I’ve seen them and they are something very special.  Thank you very much.  That was a great job tonight.  (Applause.)

And this includes one very special group that has topped Billboard charts multiple times: the Dominican Sisters, who I met backstage, from Ann Arbor, Michigan.  (Applause.)

And a very special recognition to the students who designed stunning ornaments to decorate 56 different Christmas trees here in President’s Park.  Thank you, students.  I hear you out there.  Thank you very much.  (Applause.)

And in — when they were doing the 56 trees, there were one for each state and the territories in our magnificent country.  We have truly a great, great country.  We’re very proud of it, and we love it deeply.  (Applause.)

For Christians all across our nation, around the world, this is a sacred season that begins 2,000 years ago when Jesus Christ was born.  An angel declared to the shepherds tending their flocks, “Behold, I bring you good tidings, great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is a born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.”  (Applause.)  There in Bethlehem, Mary and Joseph held in their hands the son of God; the light of the world; and, through Him, the promise of eternal salvation.

No matter one’s faith or beliefs, the Christmas season reflects all that is best in the American spirit.  This is a time of the year for rejoicing with our family and friends, for spreading charity and goodwill in our commitment all over this country in all of our communities, and for giving thanks for all of the blessings in our lives.

We are especially thankful for the countless Americans who have given their time and passion to help those in need.  Here in the audience today are a number of extraordinary foster families and guardians joined by the beautiful children they have welcomed into their homes.  And beautiful children they are.  Your devotion inspires us all.  To every child in foster care: You are the precious loved one and gift of God.  Thank you.  Thank you.  (Applause.)  Very, very special.

At this time of the year, we renew the bonds of affection between our fellow citizens, and we awaken the faith in our hearts that calls each of us to action.  As we gather loved ones, our thoughts turn to those who are rebuilding their lives after devastating wildfires, destructive hurricanes, and terrible tragedy.

We are one American family.  We hurt together, we heal together, and we will always pull through together.  This is the United States of America.  We are the best in the world, and there’s nobody close.  (Applause.)

Tonight, we honor the first responders who risked their lives to save the lives of others.  And all of America sends our profound gratitude to the incredible men and women of the United States Military. (Applause.)  And I’m proud to say our military right now is stronger than ever before.  (Applause.)

Their families are all our families, and we thank them so much for their greatness and for the incredible job they do.  Thank you to the United States Military.  Thank you very much.  (Applause.)

We ask God to watch over this nation’s heroes, and to shed his almighty grace upon our nation.  And we pray that America’s light will shine more brightly and stronger than ever.  And it will.

On behalf of Melania and myself and the entire Trump family — many of whom are with us tonight — I want to again wish you all a very, very Merry Christmas.  May this Christmas season bring peace to your hearts, warmth to your homes, cheer to your spirit, and joy to the world.  Merry Christmas, everyone.  Merry Christmas and God bless you.  Thank you.  Thank you very much.  (Applause.)

END

6:30 P.M. EST

Live: White House Press Briefing with Press Secretary Sarah Sanders – 11/27/2018

White House Briefing with Press Secretary Sarah Sanders.

Director of National Economic Council, Larry Kudlow and  National Security Ambassador, John Bolton.

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Director of National Economic Council, Larry Kudlow

 

 

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National Security Ambassador, John Bolton.

 

President Trump Talks About Illegal Immigration – 11/26/2018

President Trump holds a press conference on the White House lawn before departing for the Mississippi rallies.  He is not happy with G.M.’s decision to lay off 14,000 employees in North America and put five plants up for possible closure.  

The planned employee reduction includes 8K white-collar employees (15% of GM’s N. America workforce). G.M. also announced plant closures in Gunsan, So. Korea.  The factories that may be closed include:  Detroit and Oshawa, Ontario; Warren Michigan and Baltimore.

G.M. received record tax breaks as a result of the GOP’s tax bill last year. They eliminated jobs instead of using the tax windfall to invest in American workers.

Source:  The Denver Post 

LIVE: MAGA RALLY NUMBER 2 – President Trump Holds a Second MAGA Rally – Biloxi, MS – 11/26/2018

BY:  RRM Trump Supporter

I want to wish you all a Happy Holiday Season! I have been ill – between breaking my ankle and getting almost pneumonia – it’s been a joy! Thank you Jesus for healing me! 

But here I am again – Glad to Share the many accomplishments of Our Patriot! President Donald J. Trump!  We ALL VOTED for him in 2016 – 64,000,000 million of us – We Will VOTE #TRUMP2020.  And, Hillary, It was not the Russians who elected President Trump! We wanted a Patriot in Office after Obama and you were not it!   We ELECTED PRESIDENT TRUMP – Thank GOD for President Trump! 

VICE PRESIDENT MIKE PENCE will be joining President Donald Trump on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.   He will speak before President Trump at the MAGA Rally in support of Senatorial candidate Cindy Hyde-Smith who is running against Democrat Mike Espy.  

President Trump and VP Pence will participate in a Roundtable on the First Step Act, a bipartisan criminal justice legislation currently moving through the U.S. Senate. This bill will improve the lives of 200K incarcerated men and women, if it is passed.  (Source:  WDAM7)

Comments by President Trump (Source USA Today)

“Cindy Hyde-Smith is a spectacular woman. She’s a great senator,” the president said as he embarked on a trip to Florida for the holidays. “She came in and she’s done a fantastic job in a short period of time.”

Trump was asked about the controversy surrounding Hyde-Smith. She has been criticized for both her recent comments that she’d be glad to attend a “public hanging” for a friend and a video that appeared to show Hyde-Smith supporting voter suppression. 

“She made a statement, which I know that she feels really bad about it, and was just sort of said in jest,” Trump said. “She’s a tremendous woman and it’s a shame that she has to go through this.”

God Bless President Trump, God Bless Mississippi and God Bless Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith and all involved.

MAGA RALLY – President Trump Holds a Rally in Tupelo, MS – 11/26/2018

By:  RRM – Trump Supporter

President Trump Shows the Crowds at Tupleo, MS – via Right Side Broadcasting – 

Monday, November 26, 2018:

President Donald J. Trump held a campaign-style rally at the Tupelo Regional Airport in Tupelo, MS, in support of Republican Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith.  A special election is being held tomorrow.  

 

“FIRST STEP ACT” – President Trump Calls on Congress to Take Action & Support for [Bipartisan] Prison Reform Legislation – 11/16/2917

President Donald J. Trump Calls on Congress to Pass the FIRST STEP Act

LAW & JUSTICE

Issued on:

 

CALLING FOR BIPARTISAN ACTION: President Donald J. Trump is calling on Congress to take action and support the bipartisan prison reform legislation, the FIRST STEP Act. 

  • President Trump supports the FIRST STEP Act, which will help improve our Nation’s criminal justice system.
  • The FIRST STEP Act enjoys widespread support across the political spectrum.
    • Many of the reforms included in this legislation passed the House in an overwhelming, bipartisan vote of 360–59 in May 2018.
    • Republicans and Democrats in the Senate worked with the White House to craft a bipartisan sentencing reform compromise, which has been added to the legislation.
    • So far, seven major police organizations, more than 2,700 faith and evangelical leaders, and hundreds of conservative organizations and leaders support this legislation.

MAKING AMERICA SAFER AND FAIRER: The FIRST STEP Act will reform America’s prisons to make our communities safer and our justice system fairer.

  • Nearly all incarcerated Americans will one day leave prison, and the goal of this legislation is to make sure they do not return.
    • The FIRST STEP Act uses a targeted approach toward a specific population of Federal prisoners who will eventually be released.
  • The FIRST STEP Act will promote prisoner participation in vocational training, educational coursework, or faith-based programs, and in turn help them successfully reenter society.
    • Prisoners will be able to earn credits that reduce the amount of time spent in prison.
    • As a result, prisoners will gain job skills, drug treatment, and education that prepare them to reenter American communities as productive members of society.
    • The legislation also seeks to place Federal inmates closer to their communities in order to facilitate family visitation.
  • This is a true first step in creating a fairer justice system by reforming mandatory minimums, which have created racially discriminatory outcomes and increased overcrowding and costs.
    • The legislation reduces the enhanced penalties for certain non-violent repeat drug offenders and eliminates the three-strike mandatory life provision.
    • Certain nonviolent offenders will be able to petition courts for a review of their sentence, which can be reduced only after the judge reviews all circumstances, including public safety, criminal history, and the nature of the offense.

IMPROVING THE PRISON SYSTEM: Taking steps to better prepare inmates for reentry into our society and communities will help reduce recidivism.

  • We can improve society for all by better equipping prisoners being released for successful reintegration into society.
  • Today, one in three American adults has some type of criminal record and more than two million Americans are in prisons, including 181,000 in Federal prison.
    • More than 95% of these prisoners will eventually leave prison and face the challenge of restarting and reintegrating their lives.
  • Our prisons can do much more to prepare inmates for release, addressing the fact that roughly 77% of State inmates and 38% of Federal inmates are rearrested within five years of release.

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Remarks by President Trump on H.R. 5682, the FIRST STEP Act (WH)

H.R.5268-115th Congress (2017-2018) Congress.Gov

LAW & JUSTICE

Issued on: Roosevelt Room

THE PRESIDENT:  Hello, everybody.  Thank you very much for being here.  Appreciate it.  And thank you very much, everybody.  I’m grateful to be here today with members of the House and Senate who have poured their time — and they really have — their heart, and energy into the crucial issue of prison reform.

A very respected man — Chairman Chuck Grassley — and my friend.  Where’s Chuck?  Chuck?  Thank you, Chuck, very much.  You’ve worked hard on this.  And Bob Goodlatte.  I saw Bob here.  Thank you, Bob.  Great job.  Senators Lindsey Graham, Mike Lee, Tim Scott, Rand Paul, and Doug Collins — fantastic people who’ve worked so hard and we appreciate very much what you’ve done.  We really do.  Thank you all very much.

Working together with my administration over the last two years, these members have reached a bipartisan agreement.  Did I heard the word “bipartisan”?  Did I hear — did I hear that word?  (Laughter and applause.)  That’s a nice word.  Bipartisan agreement on prison reform legislation known as the FIRST STEP.  And that’s what it is; it’s the first step.  But it’s a very big first step.

Today, I’m thrilled to announce my support for this bipartisan bill that will make our communities safer and give former inmates a second chance at life after they have served their time.  So important.

And I have to tell you, I was called, when I announced and when we all announced together this news conference, by some of the toughest, strongest law enforcement people — including politicians, by the way — who are so in favor of it.  And I was actually surprised by some.  Like, as an example, Mike Lee — (laughter) — and Rand Paul, and others.  No, it’s got tremendous support at every level.  It’s really great.

And we’re all better off when former inmates can receive and reenter society as law-abiding, productive citizens.  And thanks to our booming economy, they now have a chance at more opportunities than they’ve ever had before.  It is true.  Our economy is so strong, that when people are getting out of jail, they’re actually able to find jobs.

And I have three instances of companies that hired people coming out of prison, and they are so thrilled by the performance of these people.  And now they’re doing it more and more and more.  And a lot of people are seeing this.  It’s great.

They wouldn’t have had the opportunity, frankly, except for the fact that the economy is so strong.  And our job market is the lowest and best it’s been in over 50 years, and seems to be getting even better.

Our pledge to hire American includes those leaving prison and looking for a very fresh start — new job, new life.  The legislation I’m supporting today contains many significant reforms, including the following:

First, it will provide new incentives for low-risk inmates to learn the skills they need to find employment, avoid old habits, and follow the law when they are released from prison.  These incentives will encourage them to participate in vocational training, educational coursework, and faith-based programs — and I want to thank Paula White, very much, because I know you very much wanted that — thank you, Paula — that reduce their chances of recidivism, and, in other words, reduce their chances of going back to prison substantially.

Second, this legislation will allow federal inmates to be placed closer to their home communities in order to help facilitate family visitation — so important — because we know that maintaining family and community ties is key to successful reentry into our society.

Third, the bill includes reasonable sentencing reforms while keeping dangerous and violent criminals off our streets.  In many respects, we’re getting very much tougher on the truly bad criminals — of which, unfortunately, there are many.  But we’re treating people differently for different crimes.  Some people got caught up in situations that were very bad.

I give an example of Mrs. Alice Johnson, who served 21 years.  And she had, I think, another 25 or so to go.  So she would have been in there for close to 50 years for something that other people go in and they get slapped on the wrist — which is also wrong, by the way.  Which is also wrong.  But I’ll never forget the scene of her coming out of prison after 21 years and greeting her family and everybody was crying.  Her sons, her grandsons — everybody was crying and hugging and holding each other.  It was a beautiful thing to see.  It was a very much tough situation.

Among other changes, it rolls back some of the provisions of the Clinton crime law that disproportionately harmed the African American community.  And you all saw that and you all know that; everybody in this room knows that.  It was very disproportionate and very unfair.

Throughout this process, my administration has worked closely with law enforcement.  Their backing has ensured that this legislation remains tough on crime — it’s got to remain very tough on crime — and supports the tremendous work of our police and the tremendous job that law enforcement does throughout our country, our communities.  They do an incredible job.  We have great respect for law enforcement.

We’re honored that seven of the major police organizations, including the Fraternal Order of Police and the International Association of Police Chiefs, have fully endorsed this bill.

We could not have gotten here without the support and feedback of law enforcement, and its leaders are here today — two of them — especially Chuck Canterbury of FOP and Chief Paul Cell of IACP.  Thank you very much.  (Applause.)  Thank you very much.  I appreciate that very much.  And these are two tough cookies.  (Laughter.)  They want what’s right.  They want what’s right.

And interesting — if you look at Texas, if you look at Georgia, if you look at Mississippi and Kentucky and some other states that are known as being very tough — these are big supporters of what we’re doing.  And some of it has been modeled after what they’ve done.  They’ve done a tremendous job.

My administration will always support the incredible men and women of law enforcement, and we will continue to pursue policies that help the heroes who keep us safe.  They are truly heroes.

We also thank the more than 2,000 leaders in the faith community who have signed a letter of support.  We have tremendous support within the faith community.  Unbelievable support.

Americans from across the political spectrum can unite around prison reform legislation that will reduce crime while giving our fellow citizens a chance at redemption.  So if something happens and they make a mistake, they get a second chance at life.

Today’s announcement shows that true bipartisanship is possible.  And maybe it’ll be thriving, if we’re going to get something done.  When Republicans and Democrats talk, debate, and seek common ground, we can achieve breakthroughs that move our country forward and deliver for our citizens.  And that’s what we’re doing today.  And I have great respect for the people standing alongside of me.

I urge lawmakers in both the House and Senate to work hard and to act quickly and send a final bill to my desk.  And I look very much forward to signing it.  This is a big breakthrough for a lot of people.  They’ve been talking about this for many, many years.

I want to thank Jared Kushner for working so hard on the bill.  Thank you, Jared.  (Applause.)  He worked very hard.  He really did.  He worked very hard.  He feels very deeply about it.

And it’s my honor to be involved and it’ll be an even greater honor to sign.

So good luck, Chuck and Mike and Rand and everybody — Lindsey, everybody back here.  Go out and see if you can get that done.  And if you can, I’m waiting.  I’ll be waiting with a pen.  And we will have done something — (laughter) — we will have done something that hasn’t been done in many, many years.  And it’s the right thing to do.  It’s the right thing to do.

Thank you all very much.  Thank you very much.  (Applause.)

END

4:48 P.M. EST