Tuesday, January 08, 2019


Sylvia Chase,
Pioneering Television Newswoman, Dead at 80

Credit: Meyer Liebowitz/The New York Times Image

The broadcast journalist Sylvia Chase in 1974, when she was with CBS. Over her career she also worked at ABC, PBS and KRON-TV in San Francisco. 

The New York Times 
By  Sam Roberts Jan. 7, 2019 

Sylvia Chase, an Emmy Award-winning correspondent whose professionalism and perseverance in the 1970s helped a generation of women infiltrate the boys club of television news, died on Thursday in Marin County, Calif. She was 80. Her death was confirmed by Shelly Ross, a former network news colleague, who said Ms. Chase had undergone surgery for brain cancer several weeks ago. 

Ms. Chase was one of a number of correspondents hired by network and local television news departments — along with Connie Chung,  Cassie Mackin ,  Marya McLaughlin , Virginia Sherwood, Lesley Stahl and others — at a time when women were striving to be taken seriously and to defy being typecast as eye candy for male viewers. 

While they had been preceded a decade earlier by pioneers like Marlene Sanders, Ms. Chase and her contemporaries were members of a freshman class still more concerned with getting into broadcast news on the ground floor than worried about being passed over for promotion later on because of a glass ceiling. 

Bill Moyers, who worked with her on the PBS series “Now With Bill Moyers,” said in an email that Ms. Chase “would quit before giving in to a less-than-honorable higher-up who insisted on compromising a story, and she was a breakthrough pioneer for woman in journalism and in coverage of kids in need.” He added, “In the internecine conflicts at either CBS or ABC — between journalists trying to get it right and brass playing it safe — she had your back because she knew you would have hers.” 

Credit: Steve Fenn/ABC Image 

Ms. Chase was an original member of the reporting team for the weekly ABC News magazine “20/20”; a correspondent for another ABC News series, “Primetime”; and the producer and host of a daytime program for CBS, “Magazine.” She also anchored the nightly news on KRON-TV in San Francisco. 

She broke ground on topics like sex abuse in the workplace and in prison. She also reported on a diet pill that was linked to lung disease; a treatment program for drug-addicted musicians; an epidemic of diabetes (a disease that she endured herself) among Native Americans in New Mexico; racism in law enforcement; and publicly funded programs that provided horrific care for disabled children. 

She won the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University and George Foster Peabody awards and shared an Emmy in 1978 with her producer, Stanhope Gould, for a report on exploding automobile gas tanks. TV Guide once called her “the most trusted woman on TV.” Sylvia Chase, center, in 1983, was a 20/20 correspondent along with, from left, Bob Brown, Tom Jarriel, Geraldo Rivera and John Stossel. Hugh Downs and Barbara Walters anchored the team

Sylvia Belle Chase was born on Feb. 23, 1938, in Northfield, Minn., to Kelsey David Chase and Sylvia (Bennett) Chase. After her parents divorced, she was raised by her grandmother in Minneapolis. The grandmother was listed in census records as the custodian of an apartment house whose tenants included Sylvia’s aunt, a radio announcer. 

Sylvia’s first broadcasting job was reporting on junior high school doings for a show that she and her older sister produced for local radio. “People said Sylvia was ‘tough,’ but in fact it was principle that prompted her to stand her ground,” Mr. Moyers said. She was, he said, shaped by the New England liberalism of Northfield’s founders and by its good Samaritan heritage. (The town’s local hero was a banker who in 1876 refused the James-Younger gang’s demand to open the vault because he would not betray the trust of his fellow citizens.) 

Ms. Chase earned a bachelor’s degree in English in 1961 from the University of California, Los Angeles, taking two extra years to graduate because she was working her way through college as a receptionist. Her brief marriage to Robert Rosenstone, a history professor at the California Institute of Technology, ended in divorce. Complete information on survivors was not immediately available. 

She lived in Belvedere, Calif. Ms. Chase worked for Democratic legislators and candidates in California in the 1960s until she was hired by the Los Angeles radio station KNX. In 1971 she joined CBS News in New York, where she wrote and narrated a new radio series, “The American Woman,” which replaced the on-air advice column “Dear Abby.” 

She was later a correspondent on the “CBS Evening News With  Walter Cronkite .” Ms. Chase was hired by ABC News in 1977 and was a correspondent for “20/20” from 1978 to 1985. KRON promoted her return to California in 1985 with billboards proclaiming, “The Chase Is On.” “I resolve to raise public awareness about two issues,” she told The San Francisco Chronicle in 1988: “the perils facing California’s children and the growing crisis in caring for AIDS patients.” 

Chase left San Francisco in 1990 and returned to ABC in New York. When her contract was not renewed after the network retrenched in 2001, she moved to PBS, where she narrated a documentary series titled “Exposé” and joined “Now With Bill Moyers” as a correspondent. 

In 1973, during the Watergate scandal, Ms. Chase was determined to get an interview with President Richard M. Nixon’s younger daughter, Julie Nixon Eisenhower, who was emerging as one of Nixon’s foremost public defenders. She revealed her successful strategy to Savvy magazine. “The basic rule is not to take ‘No,’ ever,” Ms. Chase said. “Call again and again, every day.”

Sunday, December 09, 2018


Prior to Dec 1991, no one would have imagined the USSR would break up into states, independent from mother Russia.

Given today's right wing political movements -- probably to go on for a few decades -- can you see something similar happening in Western Europe? Think Brexit. How about in the "United States" of America?

With +/- 30% of the people for Bernie (the left) & +/- 30% of the people for Trump (the right), my math sez that 60% of the population is unhappy which could produce another American revolution of some kind.  

Whomever is in power at the Federal level hasn't really represented us for decades. It's a self centered, self-sufficient, self perpetuating body that exists for its own sake. 

Now it's happening at the state level (Think Michigan & Wisconsin). Geremandering, the usual Florida fiasco, North Carolina's sinkhole, distrust of most institutions, etc. leave most citizens feeling pretty raw, wondering where their government has gone.

Where do Republicans go after Trump? Their party is now totally cockeyed &, will for a long time, associated with the excesses of the Trump era.

Consider the Paris riots or Chicago in 1968. What will happen on our streets in our cities when the recession or national bankruptcy is upon us? Will Trump manage to run the whole country into the ground as he did with so many of his own businesses? 

Has anyone considered the possibility of some sort of disolution of the "United States" of America?

Too far fetched you say? Think way ahead. Consider how twisted we've become just in the last two years. Do you think everything will calm down or heat up? I know where my mind is going. I'm curous about yours.


Wednesday, June 20, 2018


Over the years, I've thought about this subject but was never able to *understand* it as much as I now do from reading this article. I tried to imagine my own reactions were I *anything* racial & couldn't conceive of how I would handle it. 

Some people say they are "color blind" to which I say "bullshit" -- unless they are actually blind. They miss the point entirely. It's not a matter of ignoring the obvious as it is that the obvious doesn't make any difference. 

Malcolm X, for whom I had a lot of respect, used to preach that "integration" was a feel-good white middle class word that was meaningless. He offered many real life examples to defend his position. Race, he said, will change only with "mongrelization" (his word) otherwise known as intermarriage. 

We are seeing that come true in the United States. The more intermarriage between races, the less race bias there is but a minority don't agree. Who's the minority now? ;-)

One way or another, most of us ARE mutts & we all know how smart & resilient mutts are.

Friday, June 15, 2018


UW researchers test drug to extend dogs’ years
Originally published May 16, 2016 at 4:32 pm Updated May 17, 2016 at 6:28 am 

The drug rapamycin, which lengthened the lives of laboratory mice, is being tested on dogs [at]University of Washington scientists look for alternatives to treating the individual maladies that come with age in humans.

By Amy Harmon
The New York Times

Ever since last summer, when Lynn Gemmell’s dog was inducted into the Seattle trial of a drug that has been shown to significantly lengthen the lives of laboratory mice, she has been the object of intense scrutiny among dog-park regulars.

To those who insist that Bela, 8, has turned back into a puppy — “Look how fast she’s getting that ball!” — Gemmell has tried to turn a deaf ear. Bela, a border collie-Australian shepherd mix, may have been given a placebo, for one thing.

The drug, rapamycin, which improved the heart health and appeared to delay the onset of some diseases in older mice, may not work the same magic in dogs, for another. There is also a chance it could do more harm than good.

“This is just to look for side effects, in dogs,” Gemmell told Bela’s many well-wishers.

Technically that is true. But the trial, which just concluded its pilot run in Seattle, also represents a new frontier in testing a proposition for improving human health: Rather than seeking treatments for the individual maladies that come with age, we might do better to target the biology that underlies aging itself.

While the diseases that now kill most people in developed nations — heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, cancer — have different immediate causes, age is the major risk factor for all of them. That means that even breakthroughs in these areas, no matter how vital to individuals, would yield on average four or five more years of life, epidemiologists say, and some of them likely shadowed by illness.

A drug that slows aging, the logic goes, might instead serve to delay the onset of several major diseases at once. A handful of drugs tested by federally funded laboratories in recent years appear to extend the healthy life span of mice, with rapamycin, approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat organ transplant patients and some types of cancer so far proving the most effective.

In a 2014 study by the drug company Novartis, the drug appeared to bolster the immune system in older patients. And the early results in aging dogs suggest that rapamycin is helping them, too, said Matt Kaeberlein, a biology of aging researcher at the University of Washington who is running the study with a colleague, Daniel Promislow.

But scientists who champion the study of aging’s basic biology — they call it “geroscience” — say their field has received short shrift from the biomedical establishment. And it was not lost on the UW researchers that exposing dog lovers to the idea that aging could be delayed might generate popular support in addition to new data.

“Many of us in the biology of aging field feel like it is underfunded relative to the potential impact on human health this could have,” said Kaeberlein, who helped pay for the study with funds he received from the university for turning down a competing job offer. “If the average pet owner sees there’s a way to significantly delay aging in their pet, maybe it will begin to impact policy decisions.”

The idea that resources might be better spent trying to delay aging rather than cure diseases flies in the face of most disease-related philanthropy, not to mention the Obama administration’s proposal to spend $1 billion on a “cancer moonshot.” And many scientists say it is still too unproven to merit more investment.

Researchers in the field, in turn, say they might have more to show for themselves if they could better explain to Congress and the public why basic research on aging could be useful.

“People understand ‘my relative died of a heart attack, so I’m going to give money to that,’ ” said James L. Kirkland, a Mayo Clinic researcher. “It’s harder to grasp ‘my relative was older, that predisposes them to have a heart attack, so I should give money to research on aging.’ ”

Aging in mouse and dog years

In 2006, Kaeberlein and others demonstrated that rapamycin, the drug now being tested in dogs, suppressed one of the crucial proteins in yeast, resulting in a longer life span without removing a gene. The protein is known to be involved in cell growth. But just how its suppression works to extend life is still unclear, raising questions about potential unknown downsides.

Dogs age faster than humans, and bigger dogs age faster than smaller dogs. The 40 dogs that participated in the rapamycin trial had to be at least 6 years old and weigh at least 40 pounds.

Like Lynn Gemmell’s Bela, whose cholesterol was high, many of them were showing signs of aging: loose skin, graying muzzles, a stiffness in the joints. So were some of their owners.

“How are you going to be sure people are going to be giving this to their dog rather than taking it themselves?” Gemmell, 58, joked with Kaeberlein on her first visit to the veterinary clinic, where Bela was given a checkup and an echocardiogram to measure heart function, a marker that could conceivably register an improvement over the 10 weeks that she would be given the drug.

A research coordinator for human clinical trials at a hospital, Gemmell adopted Bela as a 12-week-old rescue without realizing how much outdoor time she would need with her. Now divorced with two grown daughters, Gemmell dons a headlamp when she returns home in the dark, and takes Bela out with a glow-in-the-dark ball and a collar light. “I wish she could live forever,” she said.

She is not alone. Over 1,500 dog owners applied to participate in the trial of rapamycin, which has its roots in a series of studies in mice, the first of which was published in 2009.

Ethical questions

Made by a type of soil bacteria, rapamycin has extended the life spans of yeast, flies and worms by about 25 percent.

But in what proved a fortuitous accident, the researchers who set out to test it in mice had trouble formulating it for easy consumption. As a result, the mice were 20 months old — the equivalent of about 60 human years — when the trial began. That the longest-lived mice survived about 12 percent longer than the control groups was the first indication that the drug could be given later in life and still be effective.

Kaeberlein said he had since achieved similar benefits by giving 20-month-old mice the drug for only three months. (The National Institute on Aging rejected his request for funding to further test that treatment.) Younger mice, given higher doses, have lived about 25 percent longer than those not given the drug, and mice of varying ages and genetic backgrounds have been slower to develop some cancers, kidney disease, obesity and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. In one study, their hearts functioned better for longer.

“If you do the extrapolation for people, we’re probably talking a couple of decades, with the expectation that those years are going to be spent in relatively good health,” Kaeberlein said.

Still, drugs that work in mice often fail in humans. It is also hard to ask rodents about their quality of life. The side effects, depending on the dose and duration, include mouth sores, cataracts, insulin resistance and, for males, problems with testicular function. No one knows if people, who already live a lot longer than mice, would see a proportional increase in life span.

And some researchers say there would be serious concerns in testing rapamycin, or any drug, in healthy people just to slow aging. What if a drug lengthened life for some and shortened it for others? Could anyone ethically put a healthy person into a test that might actually shorten life span?

“It’s not as simple as cancer, where patients are going to die anyway if they don’t get the drug,” said Andrew Dillin, a biology of aging researcher at the University of California, Berkeley, who recently raised the questions in Nature, a scientific journal.

Ethical concerns aside, such a trial would take decades. But dog lovers have long known that pets age about seven times as fast as they do. And Kaeberlein knew that fact would be a boon for a study of rapamycin that would have implications for both species. An owner of two dogs himself, he was determined to scrounge up the money for the pilot phase of what he and Promislow called the Dog Aging Project.

Last month, he reported at a scientific meeting that no significant side effects had been observed in the dogs, even at the highest of three doses. And compared with dogs in the control group, the hearts of those taking the drug pumped blood more efficiently at the end. The researchers would like to enroll 450 dogs for a more comprehensive five-year study, but do not yet have the money to do it.
Even if the study provided positive results on all fronts, a human trial would carry risks.

Kaeberlein, for one, said they would be worth it.

“I would argue we should be willing to tolerate some level of risk if the payoff is 20 to 30 percent increase in healthy longevity,” he said. “If we don’t do anything, we know what the outcome is going to be. You’re going to get sick and you’re going to die.”

For her part, Gemmell is not counting on anything. The other night, when she got home from work, she was ready to read her mail and have a glass of wine. But Bela greeted her as usual, ball in her mouth, ready to play.

For now, she said, this is how they both plan to stay young.

Monday, February 12, 2018


When Donald Trump had real businesses, i.e. an airline, casinos, etc, he built & ran them with a heavy debt load.  When his luck ran out, he left his lender banks holding the bag. Consequently they forced him to sell some of his properties: the airline, the Plaza Hotel, etc. & put him on a millionaire's allowance until the debt was repaid. And then they stopped lending him money.

So Trump, Inc. morphed into something simpler: selling the Trump name for a fee. Think Trump university, Trump condos, Trump steaks, Trump ties, etc. and he expanded the Trump golf clubs, financed primarily by Russian oligarchs (whatever their motivation). This formula has been a success for the Trump family.

But Trump can't quite duplicate that as POTUS so he's doing what he knows best: running the United States just like he did his businesses, i.e. with a humongous debt load. Plus he no longer has to play with those nasty oligarchs who could blow up Trump, Inc. in a nanosecond by cashing in (ergo, his political stance on Russia).

Now Trump has a compliant congress & taxpayer dollars so guess who will be left holding the bag this time? Taxpayers will be treated just like his former banks. And, as for the stock market that only 50% of us are invested in, watch out.

If you have a 401k, adjustable loans or use credit cards, your income might go down and your interest rates might go up, house prices could fall, become harder to sell (or buy), construction, food, cars, appliances, national debt costs (interest) might become more expensive. All that put together is a formula for disaster.

And Trump's financial acumen? It will have come full circle.

Sunday, February 04, 2018


Let's not lose focus.

Candidate Trump promised to scrap sanctions to protect his billionaire house of cards built & supported by Russian oligarch investment/money laundering.

The Russians succeeded infusing his staff w people representing this single issue. They intruded on our 1st Amendment to manipulate the outcome of the campaign (Hillary helped too) to further their goal.

Personal gain. That's all there is to it.

Friday, February 02, 2018


Even our forefathers were naive despite their best efforts to construct checks and balances of power.

In their naivete they considered only normal behavior (norms) based on a moral compass. But today we have an abnormal president with no moral compass & the columns, on which OUR Republic stands, are crumbling before his onslaught.

Many talking heads demonstrate that same naivete, HOPING for a cure, effectively saying, rather plaintively: "Gee, that's never happened before; Congress must stand up to the dictator."

The core of this country is -- as we know -- based on an IDEA called democracy and what we see is what results when the people take their democracy for granted and stop participating.

Saturday, December 23, 2017



Saturday, December 16, 2017


“vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based,” “science-based” “vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based,” “science-based” “vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based,” “science-based” “vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based,” “science-based” “vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based,” “science-based” “vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based,” “science-based” “vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based,” “science-based” “vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based,” “science-based”


No doubt the presidency engenders some narcissism under normal circumstances even for those who are truly grounded & humble.

I can't imagine how the office of POTUS has scrambled Trump's mind even though he certainly exhibited sociopathy even before his election.

For the health of the nation, it occurs to me that the surgeon general might consider breaking up with such an individual a national health emergency.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017


DEC 12, 2017

I just heard two women say they worked ”under" a man during a newscast.


Yes, of course I was disgusted by the POTUS tweet directed at Kirsten Gillibrand.

"Lightweight Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a total flunky for Chuck Schumer and someone who would come to my office “begging” for campaign contributions not so long ago (and would do anything for them), is now in the ring fighting against Trump. Very disloyal to Bill & Crooked-USED!"

It was a button pusher.

Sometimes letting a statement lie there like a lox speaks greater volumes then dissecting it all day which can actually dilute the real issue(s).

During the Vietnam war we reported the daily casualties. Then we started wondering if that wasn't numbing everyone to the horrors of that useless, politically motivated war.

The person who is temporarily occupying the Oval will get his soon enough. All his slithering won't help @ the end of the day. This shit will haunt him until he slides back into the swamp.

And he will live on in American history as the creature from the black lagoon.

Friday, December 08, 2017


To me the irony & cynicism of Al Franken's resignation is that it was forced by political calculation, rather than staking out a moral / high ground. It was short term thinking and I'm not convinced -- even for a moment -- that Al Franken's unfortunate departure elevates the Democrats to a higher moral level any more than Bill Clinton brought them to their lowest moral ground. Al Franken's departure only changes the intellectual quotient in the Senate at a seminal time in this country's history.

Monday, December 04, 2017

Tuesday, November 28, 2017


Reading "PLAYING WITH FIRE" a wonderful book on 1968 politics. No surprise here but there is a parallel to be made between George Wallace & Donald Trump campaigns. But also about LBJ, Rockefeller, McCarthy, Bobby Kennedy, Nixon & Vietnam war. A GREAT read for those interested in this subject.

Monday, October 23, 2017


Senator John McCain's remarks upon receiving the 2017 Liberty Medal:

[...] Some years ago, I was present at an event where an earlier Liberty Medal recipient spoke about America’s values and the sacrifices made for them. 

It was 1991, and I was attending the ceremony commemorating the 50th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The World War II veteran, estimable patriot and good man, President George H.W. Bush, gave a moving speech at the USS Arizona memorial. 

I remember it very well. His voice was thick with emotion as he neared the end of his address. I imagine he was thinking not only of the brave Americans who lost their lives on December 7, 1941, but of the friends he had served with and lost in the Pacific where he had been the Navy’s youngest aviator.

“Look at the water here, clear and quiet …” he directed, “One day, in what now seems another lifetime, it wrapped its arms around the finest sons any nation could ever have, and it carried them to a better world.”He could barely get out the last line, “May God bless them, and may God bless America, the most wondrous land on earth.”

The most wondrous land on earth, indeed. I’ve had the good fortune to spend sixty years in service to this wondrous land. It has not been perfect service, to be sure, and there were probably times when the country might have benefited from a little less of my help. 

But I’ve tried to deserve the privilege as best I can, and I’ve been repaid a thousand times over with adventures, with good company, and with the satisfaction of serving something more important than myself, of being a bit player in the extraordinary story of America. And I am so very grateful.

What a privilege it is to serve this big, boisterous, brawling, intemperate, striving, daring, beautiful, bountiful, brave, magnificent country. With all our flaws, all our mistakes, with all the frailties of human nature as much on display as our virtues, with all the rancor and anger of our politics, we are blessed.

We are living in the land of the free, the land where anything is possible, the land of the immigrant’s dream, the land with the storied past forgotten in the rush to the imagined future, the land that repairs and reinvents itself, the land where a person can escape the consequences of a self-centered youth and know the satisfaction of sacrificing for an ideal, the land where you can go from aimless rebellion to a noble cause, and from the bottom of your class to your party’s nomination for president.

We are blessed, and we have been a blessing to humanity in turn. The international order we helped build from the ashes of world war, and that we defend to this day, has liberated more people from tyranny and poverty than ever before in history. This wondrous land has shared its treasures and ideals and shed the blood of its finest patriots to help make another, better world. And as we did so, we made our own civilization more just, freer, more accomplished and prosperous than the America that existed when I watched my father go off to war on December 7, 1941.

To fear the world we have organized and led for three-quarters of a century, to abandon the ideals we have advanced around the globe, to refuse the obligations of international leadership and our duty to remain “the last best hope of earth” for the sake of some half-baked, spurious nationalism cooked up by people who would rather find scapegoats than solve problems is as unpatriotic as an attachment to any other tired dogma of the past that Americans consigned to the ash heap of history.

We live in a land made of ideals, not blood and soil. We are the custodians of those ideals at home, and their champion abroad. We have done great good in the world. That leadership has had its costs, but we have become incomparably powerful and wealthy as we did. We have a moral obligation to continue in our just cause, and we would bring more than shame on ourselves if we don’t. We will not thrive in a world where our leadership and ideals are absent. We wouldn’t deserve to.

I am the luckiest guy on earth. I have served America’s cause?—?the cause of our security and the security of our friends, the cause of freedom and equal justice?—?all my adult life. I haven’t always served it well. I haven’t even always appreciated what I was serving. But among the few compensations of old age is the acuity of hindsight. I see now that I was part of something important that drew me along in its wake even when I was diverted by other interests. I was, knowingly or not, along for the ride as America made the future better than the past.

And I have enjoyed it, every single day of it, the good ones and the not so good ones. I’ve been inspired by the service of better patriots than me. I’ve seen Americans make sacrifices for our country and her causes and for people who were strangers to them but for our common humanity, sacrifices that were much harder than the service asked of me. And I’ve seen the good they have done, the lives they freed from tyranny and injustice, the hope they encouraged, the dreams they made achievable.

May God bless them. May God bless America, and give us the strength and wisdom, the generosity and compassion, to do our duty for this wondrous land, and for the world that counts on us. With all its suffering and dangers, the world still looks to the example and leadership of America to become, another, better place. What greater cause could anyone ever serve. [...]

Monday, September 18, 2017


I equate Bernie Sanders w [the] Donald Trump [movement]. Both are cries for help in a rotting political system of perpetual self service rather than a political system in service of the people/greater good.

Until someone/something changes that trajectory we will see a slow but steady drumbeat for revolution from both sides.

IMO, this is an extremely dangerous time for America in which we can stumble into a major war, distracting us from what is happening at home. Besides the obvious, a question is whether that would unify us as WWII did or divide us as the Vietnam conflict did, furthering the current climate.

Put it another way: The MLK movement of non violence didn't quite fit the American ethos so along came Malcolm X and The Black Panthers. That really got the conversation going. Do you see some similarities in the ebb & flow of our current politics?

Sunday, July 16, 2017


"Wow. Whoa. That is some group of people. Thousands.

So nice, thank you very much. That's really nice. Thank you. It's great to be at Trump Tower. It's great to be in a wonderful city, New York. And it's an honor to have everybody here. This is beyond anybody's expectations. There's been no crowd like this.

And, I can tell, some of the candidates, they went in. They didn't know the air-conditioner didn't work. They sweated like dogs. They didn't know the room was too big, because they didn't have anybody there. How are they going to beat ISIS? I don't think it's gonna happen.

Our country is in serious trouble. We don't have victories anymore. We used to have victories, but we don't have them. When was the last time anybody saw us beating, let's say, China in a trade deal? They kill us. I beat China all the time. All the time.

When did we beat Japan at anything? They send their cars over by the millions, and what do we do? When was the last time you saw a Chevrolet in Tokyo? It doesn't exist, folks. They beat us all the time.

When do we beat Mexico at the border? They're laughing at us, at our stupidity. And now they are beating us economically. They are not our friend, believe me. But they're killing us economically.

The U.S. has become a dumping ground for everybody else's problems.

Thank you. It's true, and these are the best and the finest. When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best. They're not sending you. They're not sending you. They're sending people that have lots of problems, and they're bringing those problems with us. They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.

But I speak to border guards and they tell us what we're getting. And it only makes common sense. It only makes common sense. They're sending us not the right people.

It's coming from more than Mexico. It's coming from all over South and Latin America, and it's coming probably— probably— from the Middle East. But we don't know. Because we have no protection and we have no competence, we don't know what's happening. And it's got to stop and it's got to stop fast.

Islamic terrorism is eating up large portions of the Middle East. They've become rich. I'm in competition with them. They just built a hotel in Syria. Can you believe this? They built a hotel. When I have to build a hotel, I pay interest. They don't have to pay interest, because they took the oil that, when we left Iraq, I said we should've taken.

So now ISIS has the oil, and what they don't have, Iran has. And in 19— and I will tell you this, and I said it very strongly, years ago, I said— and I love the military, and I want to have the strongest military that we've ever had, and we need it more now than ever. But I said, "Don't hit Iraq," because you're going to totally destabilize the Middle East. Iran is going to take over the Middle East, Iran and somebody else will get the oil, and it turned out that Iran is now taking over Iraq. Think of it. Iran is taking over Iraq, and they're taking it over big league.

We spent $2 trillion in Iraq, $2 trillion. We lost thousands of lives, thousands in Iraq. We have wounded soldiers, who I love, I love -- they're great -- all over the place, thousands and thousands of wounded soldiers. And we have nothing. We can't even go there. We have nothing. And every time we give Iraq equipment, the first time a bullet goes off in the air, they leave it.

Last week, I read 2,300 Humvees— these are big vehicles— were left behind for the enemy. 2,000? You would say maybe two, maybe four? 2,300 sophisticated vehicles, they ran, and the enemy took them.

Last quarter, it was just announced our gross domestic product— a sign of strength, right? But not for us. It was below zero. Whoever heard of this? It's never below zero. Our labor participation rate was the worst since 1978. But think of it, GDP below zero, horrible labor participation rate. And our real unemployment is anywhere from 18 to 20 percent. Don't believe the 5.6. Don't believe it. That's right. A lot of people up there can't get jobs. They can't get jobs, because there are no jobs, because China has our jobs and Mexico has our jobs. They all have jobs. But the real number, the real number is anywhere from 18 to 19 and maybe even 21 percent, and nobody talks about it, because it's a statistic that's full of nonsense.

Our enemies are getting stronger and stronger by the way, and we as a country are getting weaker. Even our nuclear arsenal doesn't work. It came out recently they have equipment that is 30 years old. They don't know if it worked. And I thought it was horrible when it was broadcast on television, because boy, does that send signals to Putin and all of the other people that look at us and they say, "That is a group of people, and that is a nation that truly has no clue. They don't know what they're doing. They don't know what they're doing."

We have a disaster called the big lie: Obamacare. Obamacare.

Yesterday, it came out that costs are going for people up 29, 39, 49, and even 55 percent, and deductibles are through the roof. You have to be hit by a tractor, literally, a tractor, to use it, because the deductibles are so high, it's virtually useless. It's virtually useless. It is a disaster. And remember the $5 billion website? $5 billion we spent on a website, and to this day it doesn't work. A $5 billion website. I have so many websites, I have them all over the place. I hire people, they do a website. It costs me $3. $5 billion website. Well, you need somebody, because politicians are all talk, no action. Nothing's gonna get done. They will not bring us— believe me— to the promised land. They will not.

As an example, I've been on the circuit making speeches, and I hear my fellow Republicans. And they're wonderful people. I like them. They all want me to support them. They don't know how to bring it about. They come up to my office. I'm meeting with three of them in the next week. And they don't know— "Are you running? Are you not running? Could we have your support? What do we do? How do we do it?"

I like them. And I hear their speeches. And they don't talk jobs and they don't talk China. When was the last time you heard China is killing us? They're devaluing their currency to a level that you wouldn't believe. It makes it impossible for our companies to compete, impossible. They're killing us. But you don't hear that from anybody else. You don't hear it from anybody else. And I watch the speeches. I watch the speeches of these people, and they say the sun will rise, the moon will set, all sorts of wonderful things will happen. And people are saying, "What's going on? I just want a job. Just get me a job. I don't need the rhetoric. I want a job." And that's what's happening. And it's going to get worse, because remember, Obamacare really kicks in in '16, 2016. Obama is going to be out playing golf. He might be on one of my courses. I would invite him, I actually would say. I have the best courses in the world, so I'd say, you what, if he wants to— I have one right next to the White House, right on the Potomac. If he'd like to play, that's fine. In fact, I'd love him to leave early and play, that would be a very good thing.

But Obamacare kicks in in 2016. Really big league. It is going to be amazingly destructive. Doctors are quitting. I have a friend who's a doctor, and he said to me the other day, "Donald, I never saw anything like it. I have more accountants than I have nurses. It's a disaster. My patients are beside themselves. They had a plan that was good. They have no plan now."

We have to repeal Obamacare, and it can be— and— and it can be replaced with something much better for everybody. Let it be for everybody. But much better and much less expensive for people and for the government. And we can do it.

So I've watched the politicians. I've dealt with them all my life. If you can't make a good deal with a politician, then there's something wrong with you. You're certainly not very good. And that's what we have representing us. They will never make America great again. They don't even have a chance. They're controlled fully— they're controlled fully by the lobbyists, by the donors, and by the special interests, fully.

Yes, they control them. Hey, I have lobbyists. I have to tell you. I have lobbyists that can produce anything for me. They're great. But you know what? it won't happen. It won't happen. Because we have to stop doing things for some people, but for this country, it's destroying our country. We have to stop, and it has to stop now.

Now, our country needs— our country needs a truly great leader, and we need a truly great leader now. We need a leader that wrote "The Art of the Deal."

We need a leader that can bring back our jobs, can bring back our manufacturing, can bring back our military, can take care of our vets. Our vets have been abandoned.

And we also need a cheerleader. You know, when President Obama was elected, I said, "Well, the one thing, I think he'll do well. I think he'll be a great cheerleader for the country. I think he'd be a great spirit."He was vibrant. He was young. I really thought that he would be a great cheerleader. He's not a leader. That's true. You're right about that. But he wasn't a cheerleader. He's actually a negative force. He's been a negative force. He wasn't a cheerleader; he was the opposite. We need somebody that can take the brand of the United States and make it great again. It's not great again. We need— we need somebody— we need somebody that literally will take this country and make it great again. We can do that. And, I will tell you, I love my life. I have a wonderful family. They're saying, "Dad, you're going to do something that's going to be so tough."

You know, all of my life, I've heard that a truly successful person, a really, really successful person and even modestly successful cannot run for public office. Just can't happen. And yet that's the kind of mindset that you need to make this country great again.

So ladies and gentlemen...I am officially running... for president of the United States, and we are going to make our country great again.

It can happen. Our country has tremendous potential. We have tremendous people. We have people that aren't working. We have people that have no incentive to work. But they're going to have incentive to work, because the greatest social program is a job. And they'll be proud, and they'll love it, and they'll make much more than they would've ever made, and they'll be— they'll be doing so well, and we're going to be thriving as a country, thriving. It can happen.

I will be the greatest jobs president that God ever created. I tell you that. I'll bring back our jobs from China, from Mexico, from Japan, from so many places. I'll bring back our jobs, and I'll bring back our money.

Right now, think of this: We owe China $1.3 trillion. We owe Japan more than that. So they come in, they take our jobs, they take our money, and then they loan us back the money, and we pay them in interest, and then the dollar goes up so their deal's even better.

How stupid are our leaders? How stupid are these politicians to allow this to happen? How stupid are they? I'm going to tell you— thank you. I'm going to tell you a couple of stories about trade, because I'm totally against the trade bill for a number of reasons.

Number one, the people negotiating don't have a clue. Our president doesn't have a clue. He's a bad negotiator. He's the one that did Bergdahl. We get Bergdahl, they get five killer terrorists that everybody wanted over there. We get Bergdahl. We get a traitor. We get a no-good traitor, and they get the five people that they wanted for years, and those people are now back on the battlefield trying to kill us. That's the negotiator we have.

Take a look at the deal he's making with Iran. He makes that deal, Israel maybe won't exist very long. It's a disaster, and we have to protect Israel. But...

So we need people— I'm a free trader. But the problem with free trade is you need really talented people to negotiate for you. If you don't have talented people, if you don't have great leadership, if you don't have people that know business, not just a political hack that got the job because he made a contribution to a campaign, which is the way all jobs, just about, are gotten, free trade terrible.
Free trade can be wonderful if you have smart people, but we have people that are stupid. We have people that aren't smart. And we have people that are controlled by special interests. And it's just not going to work.

So, here's a couple of stories happened recently. A friend of mine is a great manufacturer. And, you know, China comes over and they dump all their stuff, and I buy it. I buy it, because, frankly, I have an obligation to buy it, because they devalue their currency so brilliantly, they just did it recently, and nobody thought they could do it again.

But with all our problems with Russia, with all our problems with everything— everything, they got away with it again. And it's impossible for our people here to compete.

So I want to tell you this story. A friend of mine who's a great manufacturer, calls me up a few weeks ago. He's very upset. I said, "What's your problem?"
He said, "You know, I make great product."

And I said, "I know. I know that because I buy the product."

He said, "I can't get it into China. They won't accept it. I sent a boat over and they actually sent it back. They talked about environmental, they talked about all sorts of crap that had nothing to do with it."

I said, "Oh, wait a minute, that's terrible. Does anyone know this?"
He said, "Yeah, they do it all the time with other people." I said, "They send it back?" "Yeah. So I finally got it over there and they charged me a big tariff. They're not supposed to be doing that. I told them."

Now, they do charge you tariff on trucks, when we send trucks and other things over there.

Ask Boeing. They wanted Boeing's secrets. They wanted their patents and all their secrets before they agreed to buy planes from Boeing.

Hey, I'm not saying they're stupid. I like China. I sell apartments for— I just sold an apartment for $15 million to somebody from China. Am I supposed to dislike them? I own a big chunk of the Bank of America Building at 1290 Avenue of the Americas, that I got from China in a war. Very valuable.

I love China. The biggest bank in the world is from China. You know where their United States headquarters is located? In this building, in Trump Tower. I love China. People say, "Oh, you don't like China?" No, I love them. But their leaders are much smarter than our leaders, and we can't sustain ourself with that. There's too much— it's like— it's like take the New England Patriots and Tom Brady and have them play your high school football team. That's the difference between China's leaders and our leaders. They are ripping us. We are rebuilding China. We're rebuilding many countries. China, you go there now, roads, bridges, schools, you never saw anything like it. They have bridges that make the George Washington Bridge look like small potatoes. And they're all over the place.

We have all the cards, but we don't know how to use them. We don't even know that we have the cards, because our leaders don't understand the game. We could turn off that spigot by charging them tax until they behave properly.

Now they're going militarily. They're building a military island in the middle of the South China sea. A military island. Now, our country could never do that because we'd have to get environmental clearance, and the environmentalist wouldn't let our country— we would never build in an ocean. They built it in about one year, this massive military port.

They're building up their military to a point that is very scary. You have a problem with ISIS. You have a bigger problem with China.
And, in my opinion, the new China, believe it or not, in terms of trade, is Mexico. So this man tells me about the manufacturing. I say, "That's a terrible story. I hate to hear it."

But I have another one, Ford. So Mexico takes a company, a car company that was going to build in Tennessee, rips it out. Everybody thought the deal was dead. Reported it in the Wall Street Journal recently. Everybody thought it was a done deal. It's going in and that's going to be it, going into Tennessee. Great state, great people. All of a sudden, at the last moment, this big car manufacturer, foreign, announces they're not going to Tennessee. They're gonna spend their $1 billion in Mexico instead. Not good. Now, Ford announces a few weeks ago that Ford is going to build a $2.5 billion car and truck and parts manufacturing plant in Mexico. $2.5 billion, it's going to be one of the largest in the world. Ford. Good company.

So I announced that I'm running for president. I would...... one of the early things I would do, probably before I even got in— and I wouldn't even use— you know, I have— I know the smartest negotiators in the world. I know the good ones. I know the bad ones. I know the overrated ones. You get a lot of them that are overrated. They're not good. They think they are. They get good stories, because the newspapers get buffaloed. But they're not good. But I know the negotiators in the world, and  put them one for each country. Believe me, folks. We will do very, very well, very, very well.

But I wouldn't even waste my time with this one. I would call up the head of Ford, who I know. If I was president, I'd say, "Congratulations. I understand that you're building a nice $2.5 billion car factory in Mexico and that you're going to take your cars and sell them to the United States zero tax, just flow them across the border."

And you say to yourself, "How does that help us," right? "How does that help us? Where is that good"? It's not. So I would say, "Congratulations. That's the good news. Let me give you the bad news. Every car and every truck and every part manufactured in this plant that comes across the border, we're going to charge you a 35-percent tax, and that tax is going to be paid simultaneously with the transaction, and that's it. Now, here's what is going to happen. If it's not me in the position, it's one of these politicians that we're running against, you know, the 400 people that we're (inaudible). And here's what's going to happen. They're not so stupid. They know it's not a good thing, and they may even be upset by it. But then they're going to get a call from the donors or probably from the lobbyist for Ford and say, "You can't do that to Ford, because Ford takes care of me and I take care of you, and you can't do that to Ford."

And guess what? No problem. They're going to build in Mexico. They're going to take away thousands of jobs. It's very bad for us. So under President Trump, here's what would happen: The head of Ford will call me back, I would say within an hour after I told them the bad news. But it could be he'd want to be cool, and he'll wait until the next day. You know, they want to be a little cool. And he'll say, "Please, please, please." He'll beg for a little while, and I'll say, "No interest." Then he'll call all sorts of political people, and I'll say, "Sorry, fellas. No interest," because I don't need anybody's money. It's nice. I don't need anybody's money.

I'm using my own money. I'm not using the lobbyists. I'm not using donors. I don't care. I'm really rich. I (inaudible). And by the way, I'm not even saying that's the kind of mindset, that's the kind of thinking you need for this country. So— because we got to make the country rich. It sounds crass. Somebody said, "Oh, that's crass." It's not crass.

We got $18 trillion in debt. We got nothing but problems. We got a military that needs equipment all over the place. We got nuclear weapons that are obsolete.

We've got nothing. We've got Social Security that's going to be destroyed if somebody like me doesn't bring money into the country. All these other people want to cut the hell out of it. I'm not going to cut it at all; I'm going to bring money in, and we're going to save it.

But here's what's going to happen:

After I'm called by 30 friends of mine who contributed to different campaigns, after I'm called by all of the special interests and by the— the donors and by the lobbyists— and they have zero chance at convincing me, zero— I'll get a call the next day from the head of 
Ford. He'll say. "Please reconsider," I'll say no. He'll say, "Mr. President, we've decided to move the plant back to the United States, and we're not going to build it in Mexico." That's it. They have no choice. They have no choice.

There are hundreds of things like that. I'll give you another example. Saudi Arabia, they make $1 billion a day. $1 billion a day. I love the Saudis. Many are in this building. They make a billion dollars a day. Whenever they have problems, we send over the ships. We say "we're gonna protect." What are we doing? They've got nothing but money.

If the right person asked them, they'd pay a fortune. They wouldn't be there except for us.

And believe me, you look at the border with Yemen. You remember Obama a year ago, Yemen was a great victory. Two weeks later, the place was blown up. Everybody got out— and they kept our equipment.

They always keep our equipment. We ought to send used equipment, right? They always keep our equipment. We ought to send some real junk, because, frankly, it would be— we ought to send our surplus. We're always losing this gorgeous brand-new stuff.

But look at that border with Saudi Arabia. Do you really think that these people are interested in Yemen? Saudi Arabia without us is gone. They're gone. And I'm the one that made all of the right predictions about Iraq. You know, all of these politicians that I'm running against now— it's so nice to say I'm running as opposed to if I run, if I run. I'm running.

But all of these politicians that I'm running against now, they're trying to disassociate. I mean, you looked at Bush, it took him five days to answer the question on Iraq. He couldn't answer the question. He didn't know. I said, "Is he intelligent?"

Then I looked at Rubio. He was unable to answer the question, is Iraq a good thing or bad thing? He didn't know. He couldn't answer the question.

How are these people gonna lead us? How are we gonna— how are we gonna go back and make it great again? We can't. They don't have a clue. They can't lead us. They can't. They can't even answer simple questions. It was terrible.

But Saudi Arabia is in big, big trouble. Now, thanks to fracking and other things, the oil is all over the place. And I used to say it, there are ships at sea, and this was during the worst crisis, that were loaded up with oil, and the cartel kept the price up, because, again, they were smarter than our leaders. They were smarter than our leaders.

There is so much wealth out there that can make our country so rich again, and therefore make it great again. Because we need money. We're dying. We're dying. We need money. We have to do it. And we need the right people.

So Ford will come back. They'll all come back. And I will say this, this is going to be an election, in my opinion, that's based on competence.

Somebody said -- thank you, darlin'.

Somebody said to me the other day, a reporter, a very nice reporter, "But, Mr. Trump, you're not a nice person." That's true. But actually I am. I think I am a nice person. People that know me, like me. Does my family like me? I think so, right. Look at my family. I'm proud of my family. By the way, speaking of my family, Melania, Barron, Kai, Donnie, Don, Vanessa, Tiffany, Evanka did a great job. Did she do a great job? Great. Jared, Laura and Eric, I'm very proud of my family. They're a great family. So the reporter said to me the other day, "But, Mr. Trump, you're not a nice person. How can you get people to vote for you?" I said, "I don't know." I said, "I think that number one, I am a nice person. I give a lot of money away to charities and other things. I think I'm actually a very nice person." But, I said, "This is going to be an election that's based on competence, because people are tired of these nice people. And they're tired of being ripped off by everybody in the world. And they're tired of spending more money on education than any nation in the world per capita, than any nation in the world, and we are 26th in the world, 25 countries are better than us in education. And some of them are like third world countries. But we're becoming a third world country, because of our infrastructure, our airports, our roads, everything. So one of the things I did, and I said, you know what I'll do. I'll do it. Because a lot of people said, "He'll never run. Number one, he won't want to give up his lifestyle." They're right about that, but I'm doing it.

Number two, I'm a private company, so nobody knows what I'm worth. And the one thing is that when you run, you have to announce and certify to all sorts of governmental authorities your net worth. So I said, "That's OK." I'm proud of my net worth. I've done an amazing job. I started off— thank you— I started off in a small office with my father in Brooklyn and Queens, and my father said -- and I love my father. I learned so much. He was a great negotiator. I learned so much just sitting at his feet playing with blocks listening to him negotiate with subcontractors. But I learned a lot.

But he used to say, "Donald, don't go into Manhattan. That's the big leagues. We don't know anything about that. Don't do it." I said, "I gotta go into Manhattan. I gotta build those big buildings. I gotta do it, Dad. I've gotta do it." And after four or five years in Brooklyn, I ventured into Manhattan and did a lot of great deals— the Grand Hyatt Hotel. I was responsible for the convention center on the west side. I did a lot of great deals, and I did them early and young. And now I'm building all over the world, and I love what I'm doing.

But they all said, a lot of the pundits on television, "Well, Donald will never run, and one of the main reasons is he's private and he's probably not as successful as everybody thinks." So I said to myself, you know, nobody's ever going to know unless I run, because I'm really proud of my success. I really am.

I've employed— I've employed tens of thousands of people over my lifetime. That means medical. That means education. That means everything. So a large accounting firm and my accountants have been working for months, because it's big and complex, and they've put together a statement, a financial statement, just a summary. But everything will be filed eventually with the government, and we don't [use] extensions or anything. We'll be filing it right on time. We don't need anything.

And it was even reported incorrectly yesterday, because they said, "He had assets of $9 billion." So I said, "No, that's the wrong number. That's the wrong number. Not assets."So they put together this. And before I say it, I have to say this. I made it the old-fashioned way. It's real estate. You know, it's real estate.

It's labor, and it's unions good and some bad and lots of people that aren't in unions, and it's all over the place and building all over the world. And I have assets— big accounting firm, one of the most highly respected— 9 billion 240 million dollars. And I have liabilities of about $500 million. That's long-term debt, very low interest rates. In fact, one of the big banks came to me and said, "Donald, you don't have enough borrowings. Could we loan you $4 billion"? I said, "I don't need it. I don't want it. And I've been there. I don't want it." But in two seconds, they give me whatever I wanted. So I have a total net worth, and now with the increase, it'll be well-over $10 billion. But here, a total net worth of—net worth, not assets, not— a net worth, after all debt, after all expenses, the greatest assets— Trump Tower, 1290 Avenue of the Americas, Bank of America building in San Francisco, 40 Wall Street, sometimes referred to as the Trump building right opposite the New York— many other places all over the world. So the total is $8,737,540,00. Now I'm not doing that...I'm not doing that to brag, because you know what? I don't have to brag. I don't have to, believe it or not. I'm doing that to say that that's the kind of thinking our country needs. We need that thinking. We have the opposite thinking.

We have losers. We have losers. We have people that don't have it. We have people that are morally corrupt. We have people that are selling this country down the drain. So I put together this statement, and the only reason I'm telling you about it today is because we really do have to get going, because if we have another three or four years— you know, we're at $8 trillion now. We're soon going to be at $20 trillion.

According to the economists— who I'm not big believers in, but, nevertheless, this is what they're saying— that $24 trillion— we're very close— that's the point of no return. $24 trillion. We will be there soon. That's when we become Greece. That's when we become a country that's UN-salvageable. And we're gonna be there very soon. We're gonna be there very soon.

So, just to sum up, I would do various things very quickly. I would repeal and replace the big lie, Obamacare. I would build a great wall, and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me, and I'll build them very inexpensively, I will build a great, great wall on our southern border. And I will have Mexico pay for that wall.
Mark my words.

Nobody would be tougher on ISIS than Donald Trump. Nobody.

I will find -- within our military, I will find the General Patton or I will find General MacArthur, I will find the right guy. I will find the guy that's going to take that military and make it really work. Nobody, nobody will be pushing us around.

I will stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons. And we won't be using a man like Secretary Kerry that has absolutely no concept of negotiation, who's making a horrible and laughable deal, who's just being tapped along as they make weapons right now, and then goes into a bicycle race at 72 years old, and falls and breaks his leg. I won't be doing that. And I promise I will never be in a bicycle race. That I can tell you.

I will immediately terminate President Obama's illegal executive order on immigration, immediately.

Fully support and back up the Second Amendment.

Now, it's very interesting. Today I heard it. Through stupidity, in a very, very hard core prison, interestingly named Clinton, two vicious murderers, two vicious people escaped, and nobody knows where they are. And a woman was on television this morning, and she said, "You know, Mr. Trump," and she was telling other people, and I actually called her, and she said, "You know, Mr. Trump, I always was against guns. I didn't want guns. And now since this happened"— it's up in the prison area— "my husband and I are finally in agreement, because he wanted the guns. We now have a gun on every table. We're ready to start shooting."I said, "Very interesting."
So protect the Second Amendment.

End— end Common Core. Common Core should— it is a disaster. Bush is totally in favor of Common Core. I don't see how he can possibly get the nomination. He's weak on immigration. He's in favor of Common Core. How the hell can you vote for this guy? You just can't do it. We have to end education has to be local.

Rebuild the country's infrastructure. Nobody can do that like me. Believe me. It will be done on time, on budget, way below cost, way below what anyone ever thought. I look at the roads being built all over the country, and I say I can build those things for one-third. What they do is unbelievable, how bad. You know, we're building on Pennsylvania Avenue, the Old Post Office, we're converting it into one of the world's great hotels. It's gonna be the best hotel in Washington, D.C. We got it from the General Services Administration in Washington. The Obama administration. We got it. It was the most highly sought after— or one of them, but I think the most highly sought after project in the history of General Services. We got it. People were shocked, Trump got it. Well, I got it for two reasons. Number one, we're really good. Number two, we had a really good plan. And I'll add in the third, we had a great financial statement. Because the General Services, who are terrific people, by the way, and talented people, they wanted to do a great job. And they wanted to make sure it got built.

So we have to rebuild our infrastructure, our bridges, our roadways, our airports. You come into La Guardia Airport, it's like we're in a third world country. You look at the patches and the 40-year-old floor. They throw down asphalt, and they throw. You look at these airports, we are like a third world country. And I come in from China and I come in from Qatar and I come in from different places, and they have the most incredible airports in the world. You come to back to this country and you have LAX, disaster. You have all of these disastrous airports. We have to rebuild our infrastructure.

Save Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security without cuts. Have to do it. Get rid of the fraud. Get rid of the waste and abuse, but save it. People have been paying it for years. And now many of these candidates want to cut it. You save it by making the United States, by making us rich again, by taking back all of the money that's being lost.

Renegotiate our foreign trade deals. Reduce our $18 trillion in debt, because, believe me, we're in a bubble. We have artificially low interest rates. We have a stock market that, frankly, has been good to me, but I still hate to see what's happening. We have a stock market that is so bloated. Be careful of a bubble because what you've seen in the past might be small potatoes compared to what happens. So be very, very careful.

And strengthen our military and take care of our vets. So, so important.

Sadly, the American dream is dead. But if I get elected president I will bring it back bigger and better and stronger than ever before, and we will make America great again.

Thank you. Thank you very much."