September 8, 2017
Rose Garden, White House
Good morning. I would like to first make a statement, then will take a couple questions.
As you are all well aware, I have press conferences infrequently but felt obliged on this somber occasion. It is with a heavy heart that I come to you today. Unfortunately, this past holiday weekend, we saw another vicious attack using a truck to plow through a group of innocent bystanders at a Labor Day event in Chicago. Our sympathies go out to the families.
This tragedy, however, requires swift decisive action. We cannot allow more innocent deaths.
As you know, we have successfully enacted very strict gun laws since I became President, and we are well on our way to further restrictions including the confiscation of all assault style weapons. It is now apparent, however, that trucks of certain types have become the weapon of choice. So today, using my executive authority, I am enacting very strict new restrictions on the sale of all trucks above 2 tons. If you are on the no-fly list, than you should not be able to buy or rent these trucks. In addition to background checks, there will be a new 72 hour waiting period to help thwart these types of criminal attacks.
Now let me address an obvious concern. I realize that in this case, as was true of our new firearm regulations, that these new restrictions on truck sales and rentals would not have prevented this tragedy, but as your President, I am obligated to use my executive power to protect citizens of this great country. To protect those who cannot protect themselves.
This is another reason why more power needs to be centralized at the federal level. To ensure the welfare of all. To guarantee equality of outcomes, not just equality of opportunities. It is the basis of any civilized nation. You need look no further than the example of Western Europe and how well those societies work. Countries like Greece, for example. That was a clear message from the last election and is my mandate. If we can just prevent one death from these new restrictions and expand power at the federal level, then the inconvenience and economic impact will be worth it. The small decrease in our personal freedom will justify the added security these new regulations will provide.
I also want to address another criticism, since the perpetrator of this crime is a recent arrival as a refuge. Since becoming President, we have consistently moved to a philosophy of an open border. We have no right as a great nation to put any restrictions on those who want to make their home in America. After all, this nation was built on immigration.
It is because of the past legacy of George W. Bush and the discredited Republican Party that the world was thrown into chaos. The failed policies of that administration created this refugee crisis. So, it is our obligation to allow all refugees from any nation to come here, regardless of whether they believe in our constitution or not. It is certainly their right to live as they please, and that will include allowing certain regulated geographic areas to practice Sharia law. We have no right to pass moral judgement on other ways of organizing society. I will not allow this criminal act to change our course. This tragic crime will not divert our attention from our overall goal of making amends to all nations on earth for what Western civilization has wrought. That is are solemn duty as citizens of the world.
So, now, I will take three questions…first from George Stephanopoulos, Chuck Todd, and then finally Chris Matthews…
Jeff Groh is a fiscal conservative and a social moderate. He believes more often than not, both sides of the political spectrum actually agree on the ends, but it is the means that fuel disagreements, with the far right and left resorting to name-calling rather than a pursuing a rational debate on the issues, trade-offs and unintended consequences. His consulting company, New Product Visions, helps companies improve their innovation management practices, and he is passionate about the creation of economic value and prosperity by restoring our country’s manufacturing base. Want to email me? email@example.com