Donald Trump Says 'Farewell' in Pre-Taped Address and Avoids Saying Joe Biden's Name — Again
President Donald Trump said goodbye as commander-in-chief in a pre-taped farewell address, posted to YouTube on Tuesday night. Trump's parting remarks come one day before President-elect Joe Biden is set to replace him in office.
"I stand before you truly proud of what we achieved together," Trump, 74, said in the nearly 20-minute speech. "We did what we came here to do and so much more."
Presidents typically defend their administrations' record during their farewell remarks, while offering support for the incoming administration and hope for the future of the country.
Trump, however, declared earlier this month that he would 'never concede" and avoided mentioning Biden's name again during the speech.
"This week we inaugurate a new administration and pray for its success in keeping America safe and prosperous," he said. "We extend our best wishes and we also want them to have luck, a very important word."
Biden, 78, will take over a country that, under Trump, has failed to contain the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and its surrounding economic fallout. More than 400,000 Americans have died since COVID-19 made landfall in the U.S. early last year, according to a New York Times tracker, while tens of millions lost their jobs due to the pandemic in 2020.
Trump publicly acted out against federal health officials' safety recommendations and claimed that when local governments implemented shutdown measures meant to manage the virus, it was a political scheme aimed at damaging public perception of his presidency.
"We are only as dynamic as our pride," Trump said in the farewell address, aiming for a presidential tone after months of challenging the election results and refusing to meet with Biden to aid his transition.
Elsewhere during his pre-taped remarks, Trump thanked his family, administration staff and supporters. He also recognized a number of policies that led to fierce criticism from liberal groups and loyal backing from his conservative allies throughout his term.
The departing president touted his administration's mission to "rebuild" the U.S. military and said he's "pleased" at the construction of a "powerful new wall" along the country's southern border with Mexico. Trump also celebrated the newfound U.S. Space Force and said his administration "unlocked" energy resources, using methods his critics have warned are dangerous to the environment in the U.S. and around the world.
Trump also defended his decisions to withdraw the U.S. from a number of global alliances and agreements, including the Paris Climate Accord and the NAFTA trade agreement between the country and its North American neighbors.
"The world respects us again," Trump said, pointing to the country's current direction. His proclamation — which critics immediately refuted on social media — comes less than two weeks after many U.S. allies expressed shock and sadness over a deadly riot that Trump was later impeached for inciting.
"I did not seek the path that would get the least criticism," Trump said. "I took on the tough battles, the hardest fights, the most difficult choices because that's what you elected me to do."
Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris will be sworn in around noon ET on Wednesday.
Trump said he and the outgoing first family will skip his successor's swearing-in ceremony. They're expected to leave the White House early for their private residence in Florida.
Source: Read Full Article