President Donald Trump called out critics and the media during his Wednesday commencement speech to Coast Guard graduates for treating him more unfairly, he believes, than any politician “in history.”
His comments were the first he’s made publicly since Tuesday’s bombshell story in The New York Times that claimed ousted FBI Director James Comey, whom Trump fired last week, kept memos of his meetings with Trump and documented one meeting in which the president reportedly said he hoped Comey would let go of the FBI’s investigation into Michael Flynn, Trump’s fired national security adviser.
Legal experts have said that if the story is true, it could lead to a “very strong case of obstruction of justice,” the same charge that brought down former President Richard Nixon.
“Now I want to take this opportunity to give you some advice,” Trump told the Coast Guard cadets in Connecticut. “Over the course of your life, you will find that things are not always fair. You will find that things happen to you that you do not deserve, and that are not always warranted, but you have to put your head down and fight, fight, fight. Never, ever, ever give up. Things will work out just fine.”
“Look at the way I’ve been treated lately,” he continued. “Especially by the media. No politician in history, and I say this with great surety, has been treated worse or more unfairly. You can’t let them get you down. You can’t let the critics and the naysayers get in the way of your dreams. I guess that’s why, thank you, I guess that’s why we won.”
Trump continued, adding that “adversity makes you stronger” and telling the cadets to never “give in” or “back down” and “never stop doing what you know is right.”
“Nothing worth doing, ever, ever, ever, came easy,” he said. “And the more righteous your fight, the more opposition that you will face.”
He then listed off some of what he believes to be his early accomplishments in office, such as the confirmation of Justice Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court and a significant drop in the number of illegal border crossings from Mexico into the US.
Trump has faced a barrage of negative news in recent days following his controversial firing of Comey. In addition to the Times’ Tuesday report, The Washington Post reported Monday that Trump disclosed highly classified intelligence from an Islamic State-connected source — later revealed to be tied to Israel — to Russian diplomats during a recent Oval Office meeting.
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