Photo of Donald Trump

Remarks Introducing Governor Mike Pence as the 2016 Republican Vice Presidential Nominee in New York City

July 16, 2016

Thank you, everybody. Great honor. Great honor, thank you. This is a wonderful day. Aww. [Chants of Trump, Trump, Trump] Wow.  On a Saturday morning yet. Isn't that nice? Thank you, all. And we're going to have an incredible convention. It's really going well. We're going to have an incredible convention. And we're going to get things solved, and we're going to do lots of wonderful things for our country, most importantly.

So I'm here today to introduce the man who will be my partner in this campaign, and the White House, to fix our rigged system -- we are in a rigged, rigged system -- and to make America safe again and to make America great again.

I want to also address the Islamic terror attack in France. We've witnessed horror beyond belief, no matter where you look. And now it's happening more and more. And it's never going to stop.

We need new leadership. We need new thinking. We need strength. We need in our country law and order. And if I'm elected president, that will happen. [applause]

I want to express our unyielding support for the people of France, and we mourn their loss as a nation.

And as far as Turkey is concerned, so many friends in Turkey, great people, amazing people. We wish them well. It looks like they're resolving the difficulty, but we wish them well. A lot of -- a lot of anguish last night, but hopefully it'll all work out.

Now, as, hopefully, the next president of the United States, I want to refer back to what's happened over the years. The Middle East today is more unstable than ever before. Never been like this. Out of control. After four years of Clinton, who really led the way and led Obama down a horrible path, because I don't even think he could have made these decisions so badly, she led him right down a horrible path. He didn't know what he was doing.

Iraq, Syria, all into chaos. And Iran is on a path to nuclear weapons. And on top of that, we gave them back $150 billion, and we didn't get our hostages until the end. Now we're seeing unrest in Turkey, a further demonstration of the failures of Obama-Clinton. You just have to look, every single thing they touched has turned to horrible, horrible, death-defying problems.

We also need to bring back in this country -- because we see what happened -- our industry, our manufacturing, our jobs. They've been taken away, like we're babies. Taken away. And we're going to bring them back.

I found the leader who will help us deliver a safe society and a prosperous -- really prosperous society for all Americans. Indiana Governor Mike Pence was my first choice. I've admired the work he's done, especially in the state of Indiana. And I'm going to go over some of those accomplishments in just a minute.

But I also admire the fact that he fights for the people, and he's going to fight for you. He is a solid, solid person. [applause]

Governor Pence served Indiana with distinction in Congress. He rose to leadership and served as the chairman of the entire House Republican Conference. Number one. He's really got the skills of a highly talented executive, leading the state of Indiana to jobs, growth, and opportunity, in spite of the relentless obstacles put in his way and every state's way by the Obama administration. It's horrible out there. High taxes and regulations. And it's out of control.

Mike Pence is a man of honor, character, and honesty. We know that. Hillary Clinton is the embodiment of corruption. She's a corrupt person. What she's done with her e-mails, what she's done with so many things, and I see the ads up all the time, the ads. She's totally bought and paid for by Wall Street, the special interests, the lobbyists, 100 percent. She's crooked Hillary. [applause]

And I think that, while she got away with murder, in fact, I think it might be her greatest accomplishment, escaping the recent scandal, and her lies, and the loss of 33,000 e-mails -- but it wasn't a loss, she discarded -- that in itself is a major crime. Other people have been paying tremendous prices for what they've done, which is peanuts compared to what happened with Hillary Clinton.

Thirty-three thousand e-mails are missing, and that's OK? Didn't give them to the FBI? Didn't give them to the attorney general, and that's OK? Wipes her server clean, that's OK? These are crimes. These are crimes. And how she got away with it, I think I understand it, but I think a lot of people don't.

But I do believe, while she didn't pay the price she should have paid, she's going to pay that price when November 8th rolls around. She's going to pay it at the polls. I believe that. [applause]

On top of everything else, Hillary made $21.6 million giving speeches to special interests in a short period of time. She's totally owned by Wall Street. We believe in Americanism; she believes in globalism. And it's not that she believes in it. The people that give her all of this money believe in it. And she'll believe in whatever they want her to believe. Believe me. That's it. [applause]

What a difference between crooked Hillary Clinton and Mike Pence. [applause]

Mike Pence will never be afraid to speak the name of our enemy: Radical Islam. Radical Islamic terrorism. You saw it the other day with the truck screaming out the window. You heard what he was screaming out the window. You saw it in San Bernardino. You saw it at the World Trade Center. You saw it in Orlando. How horrible was that? You saw it in Paris. You see it all over.

And Hillary is a weak person. We are the law and order candidates, and we're the law and order party. We're going to change things around. There's going to be respect again for law and order. [applause]

Hillary Clinton's foreign policy helped launch ISIS. You know, she's talking -- I see the ads she puts on. If I make one statement, which is fine, she'll take that statement and put on a totally dishonest ad, because she's got a lot of money because it's given to her by the lobbyists and by the special interests. Got a lot of money.

But I see the ads on foreign policy. She's talking about Donald Trump doesn't have foreign policy experience. Of course not. I've been a very, very, very successful businessperson. I mean -- but -- but if you look at my calls, I said, don't go into Iraq. Nobody cared, because I was a businessperson. I was a civilian. Take the oil. Many, many calls I've made.

You take a look. I said that in Scotland and in the U.K., that was going to happen. I was the one that predicted it. And everybody said, he's wrong, he's wrong. President Obama said, if it happens, they're going to get to the back of the line, which probably is one of the reasons they lost, because I consider it a win. I think it was a win for them, actually, because they don't want to be told what to do. And they don't want to be told that when people pour into the country, they have to take them even if they're not qualified, even if they don't have paperwork, even if they have no idea where they come from.

And I said that Brexit's going to happen. I said that they are going to break away. And everybody laughed at me. And the odds were 20 percent. And then when it happened, she took an ad saying, oh, Donald Trump said this or that, but I'm the one that said it was going to happen. And some of the more fair reporters -- about 30 percent of them -- said he was right. I appreciate that. Seventy percent didn't, so that's OK.

So Mike Pence will never be afraid to speak the name of our enemy. So important. Now, I think if you look at one of the big reasons that I chose Mike -- and one of the reasons is party unity, I have to be honest. So many people have said party unity. Because I'm an outsider. I want to be an outsider. I think it's one of the reasons I won in landslides. I won in landslides. This wasn't close. This wasn't close. [applause]

No, this wasn't close. This was -- in the history of the Republican Party, history, with 17 people running, you have to understand, other people ran against one, two, and three. There were 17. We got -- I say we, because I'm the messenger, I'm a messenger -- I'm doing a good job, but I'm a messenger -- we got almost 14 million votes. That's more than any other person in the history of the Republican Party in the primary system running for president.

Think of it. That's more than Ronald Reagan, who we love. That's more than Richard Nixon. It's more than Dwight D. Eisenhower. You know, he won the Second World War, in all fairness. Pretty good. It's more than the Bushes.

But I mean by a lot. I don't mean by a little. But that's with 17 people. People don't over-say that. That means our message is unbelievable. And I want to thank all of the loyal people -- because I have such loyal, unbelievable people, and they displayed that just yesterday in Cleveland, where it's going to be so amazing.

But they displayed it. It was on display, where we had this group of people, who -- many of whom I've known, and I won't say, because for party unity, I'll say they're wonderful people, OK? Never Trump, they said, never Trump, never Trump. Oh, we're going to win. They got crushed. And they got crushed immediately, because people want what we're saying to happen.

They're tired of a country that has horrible trade deals, that has no borders, that has taxes that are through the roof, highest taxed nation just about in the world, that has regulations that don't allow you to start a business and destroy your business if you do start -- and, by the way, speaking of destroying businesses, we're going to take care of the miners and we're going to take care of the steelworkers. We're going to put 'em back to work. [applause]

So they're very tired of it. But I want to thank all of those people that – delegates-- that were on the different committees, because, boy, was that something. Did we show them something. And unfortunately, the vote was very late. But essentially, we had 112-12. This was the vote that was going to put it onto the floor and we're going to have a big fight. We're not going to have a fight. People agree with what we've -- they want the wall. They want the borders. They want these things to happen.

And what we're doing... [applause]

And what we're doing that I'm so proud of, so proud -- and nobody else would even think about doing it -- I fought very hard for it. We'll call it the Johnson amendment, where he took away from the evangelicals -- and I want to thank the evangelicals, because without the evangelicals, I could not have won this nomination. The evangelicals have been unbelievable. I dominated with the evangelicals. A lot of people were surprised. They say he's not perfect. But you know what? They know I'm going to get the job done, and they're really smart. [applause]

And I said -- and I said for the evangelicals, that we're going to do something that nobody's even tried to do. You have the Johnson amendment passed by Lyndon Johnson and his group. And he was a powerful president. He knew how to get things done. He got bogged down in a war that was a disaster and it destroyed him. But he was a powerful president.

And we call it the Johnson amendment, where you are just absolutely shunned if you're evangelical, if you want to talk religion, you lose your tax-exempt status. We put into the platform, we're going to get rid of that horrible Johnson amendment. And we're going to let evangelicals, we're going to let Christians and Jews and people of religion talk without being afraid to talk.

I saw this. I had so many great leaders so many times up to my office, the top -- the absolute top evangelical leaders, Christian leaders, Jewish leaders, believe it or not, some Muslim leaders -- people are going to be surprised to hear that -- I had the top leaders up to my office, and I said, why is it that you're so powerful as an individual, and yet when you get out there, you're sort of timid?

And they didn't know how to answer the question. And it took two, three meetings before I figured it out. One great, great gentleman that everybody knows, but whose name I will not reveal, said, Mr. Trump, we live in fear in our churches and our synagogues. We live in fear that we're going to lose our tax-exempt status if we say anything that's even slightly political.

And I looked out the window. I was in Trump Tower, and I pointed to people walking down the street. I said, well, they have the right to speak, but you don't. That means they're more powerful than you are. We have to do something about it. How did it start? How did it start? [applause]

And they said, it started because of Lyndon Johnson. And he actually had a problem in Texas with a certain religious leader. And he did this, and he got it done. And we're going to undo it, so that religious leaders in this country, and those unbelievable people--and not because they backed me in such large numbers-- but so that religion can again have a voice, because religion's voice has been taken away. And we're going to change that. OK? All right. [applause]

Back to Mike Pence. So one of the primary reasons I chose Mike was I looked at Indiana, and I won Indiana big. Remember, Indiana was going to be the firewall. That's where Trump was going down -- they agreed I'd win New York, I'd win Pennsylvania, I'd win all these places. But Indiana was going to be the firewall.

So I got to study Indiana, and I got to study New York and a lot of other places, and I saw how NAFTA, signed by Bill Clinton, has drained our manufacturing jobs, just drained us like we've never been drained before. NAFTA, again, signed by Bill Clinton. NAFTA is the worst economic deal in the history of our country. Manufacturing down in some states 55, 60 percent. It's a horror show, moving to Mexico, moving to other places.

I have a friend who's a great builder. What he builds is plants. That's all he does, is build plants. He doesn't build buildings. He doesn't -- he builds plants. It's the biggest in the world, from what I hear.

I said, how's business? I was with him the other day. How's business? He goes unbelievable. I said, really, wow, I'm surprised. Why is it unbelievable? Because I think of him as building in this country. He says, Donald, what we're doing in Mexico, you won't believe. I said, what do you mean? He said, we're building plants in Mexico the likes of which we've never seen.

I said, what about this country? Not much. Not much. That's the expression. He said exactly that. Not much. I said, but Mexico? He said, you've never seen anything like it. It's incredible.

Folks, that's going to stop. We're going to go reverse it. We're going to bring our jobs back to this country. We can't be the stupid people anymore. OK? [applause]

And he was better than a pollster. He's better than a consultant. I would say, how are we doing? And you get a big report that costs you millions of dollars. Doesn't cost me millions. Me, I give them $10,000, OK? [laughter]

It costs other people millions. It costs other campaigns millions to get a report. Every time they get a report, it's millions. But I'll tell you what, a guy like this is better than anybody you can hire to do a report. And he said it. He didn't say it from the standpoint of he's upset about it. Just fact. How are we doing? Unbelievable in Mexico. In fact, he actually said, I've never, ever seen anything like it.

And if you look, Ford is building massive plants there instead of Michigan. We want them to build them in Michigan. They're going to build them in Michigan. And you know that I know how to do that. So easy. So easy.

But they're not going to do and they're not going to take advantage of us without retribution. There are consequences when you fire thousands of people and move to another country and then think you're going to you're your product and sell it in here. There are consequences. And those consequences are going to keep companies in our country. It's very simple. And everybody here knows what the consequences are, but I won't say that because I'm much more interested right now in Mike. [laughter]

Indiana's unemployment rate -- and this is the primary reason I wanted Mike, other than he looks very good, other than he's got an incredible family, incredible wife and family -- Karen is amazing. [applause]

Incredible family. Highly respected. Expected to go for another four years. He would have won, I think, very easily in Indiana. Indiana, their unemployment rate has fallen. When he was there, when he started, 8.4 percent when he was governor, when he took over, to less than 5 percent in May of 2016. Since January 2013, Indiana's labor force has increased by more than 186,000 jobs. You have to understand, I've gone around to all these states. I've gone to all of them. And every time, I have statisticians. I say give me the stats on a state.

And it's always bad, down, down, down. Down 40 percent, 50 percent, 60 percent in some cases. Here's somebody where it's gone up. Private sector job growth is up by more than 147,000 jobs since 2013. That's like very unusual.

Governor Pence balanced the budget. Can you imagine a balanced budget? Our budget's so out of whack in this country, we don't know what we're doing. We're going to owe very soon $21 trillion. He balanced the budget. They don't know what that means. Governor Pence balanced the budget, produced a surplus, and maintains a $2 billion reserve fund in the state of Indiana.

It's also rated triple-A, their bonds are rated triple-A. Very few states have that. Triple-A. The best. That's as good as you can get, whether you're a company, a state, triple-A.

Indiana was recently recognized by Chief Executive Magazine as the number-one state in the Midwest for business. Number one. And it's not even close. There are approximately 34,000 fewer Hoosiers on unemployment insurance now than there were when Mike Pence took office. So you have fewer Hoosiers, fewer people from Indiana.

And besides that, Bobby Knight, my friend, who really did help me. I mean, if you want a reference, Bobby Knight in Indiana, we love Bobby Knight. But he agrees with everything I'm saying. He loves the governor.

Indiana has the second-lowest unemployment rate in the nation, for veterans, where nobody's fighting for the veterans like I'm fighting for the veterans, the veterans have been left behind. [applause]

If you remember a few months ago, Hillary Clinton said the, really -- they're doing much better, the V.A. is much better. They're doing a much better job than people give it credit for. People are dying on line waiting for five, six days for doctors. People are dying on -- they can't even see a doctor. It's a scandal.

Take a look at what's happening with the V.A. in Arizona. Take a look at what's happening with -- you know, just the Veterans Administration hospitals. It's a scandal. It's corrupt. It's incompetent. It's a scandal. And Hillary Clinton thought it was just fine. And, boy, am I going to win big with the veterans. I mean, we know that for a fact. [applause]

So it's now 2.4 percent for veterans. In 2013, when Mike Pence took office, the rate for veterans was 6.7 percent. It was 31st in the nation, one of the bad ones, and now it's almost the best. Got 'em jobs. Got 'em jobs.

Indianapolis is ranked second in top 10 metro areas for young college graduates. That's a great thing. They're going to stay there. That's a great thing. And Mike worked hard on that. He was telling me, that was not easy.

Under Governor Pence's leadership, Indiana enacted the largest K-12 education funding increase in the state's history. So you're balancing budgets, and yet you're giving more money to education. Isn't that a great thing? [applause]

Indiana has just about the largest school choice program in America. School choice is where it's at, folks. You want to get your schools better, you gotta get rid of Common Core fast.

Governor Pence enacted the largest income tax cut in the state's history. Think of that. We're cutting taxes and balancing budgets. And along with corporate tax reform, just about number one in the country. CNBC ranked Indiana first in the nation for its infrastructure.

So with all of these cuts and all of these balancing budgets, we're spending more money on education, and the infrastructure is kept up. That had so much -- look, as a builder, nobody in the history of this country has ever known so much about infrastructure as Donald Trump. I build infrastructure. Do I know how to build a wall? Do I know how to build infrastructure?

You know, it's very interesting. We're building -- we're building -- I won -- the -- which is pretty amazing with the Obama administration, but I won the right to have the old post office building on Pennsylvania Avenue, right near the White House, and it's an amazing -- probably the best location, one of the most sought after projects in the history of the GSA, General Services. And I really like what's happened. We're going to have an opening very soon. Ivanka and Eric and Don did a fantastic job on it.

But I thought the other day, I was going over the numbers, we're under budget and about a year -- actually more than a year – but we're a year ahead of schedule, and we're under budget substantially. And the quality of the work is even better than we originally were going to do. [applause]

And when I explained to a government representative that we're under budget and ahead of schedule, they almost fell off, because they've never heard those words before. They've never heard them.

So when I see what happened to Indiana, which was having tremendous problems, when I see what happened to Indiana under Mike's work -- also his predecessor did a great job, by the way, great job, who's now at Duke -- who's now at Purdue -- when I see what happened with respect to the numbers, the state, and everything else, that, to me, was probably the single most important point, because it's something that hasn't happened -- almost has not happened in this whole country.

The turnaround and the strength of Indiana has been incredible, and I learned that when I campaigned there. And I learned that when I won that state in a landslide. And I learned that when Governor Pence, under tremendous pressure from establishment people, endorsed somebody else, but it was more of an endorsement for me, if you remember. He talked about Trump, then he talked about Ted -- who's a good guy, by the way, who's going to be speaking at the convention, Ted Cruz, good guy -- but he talked about Trump, Ted, then he went back to Trump. I said, who did he endorse?

So even though he was under pressure, because I'm so, you know, outside of the establishment, it was the single greatest non-endorsement I've ever had in my life, OK? I will tell you. [applause]

So with that, I would like to introduce a man who I truly believe will be outstanding in every way and will be the next vice president of the United States, Governor Mike Pence. Thank you. Thank you, everybody. Thank you. [applause]

Donald J. Trump, Remarks Introducing Governor Mike Pence as the 2016 Republican Vice Presidential Nominee in New York City Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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