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President Trump joined four early United States presidents in refusing to attend his successor’s inauguration. While President Washington attended his former vice president’s inauguration, John Adams did not pretend that the incredibly ugly 1800 campaign was normal. He refused to dignify Thomas Jefferson’s inauguration. The two men, formerly friends, were bitter enemies until they reconciled in a long correspondence, years after both returned to private life. Adams’ son, John Quincy Adams, did not attend the inauguration of the founder of the Democratic Party, Andrew Jackson. Yet, J.Q. Adams had a long second political life as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives.* You may recall that President Trump chose to feature Andrew Jackson’s portrait in the Oval Office. Martin Van Buren, Andrew Jackson’s vice president, did not attend the Whig Party candidate, William Harrison’s inauguration.** Andrew Johnson, a Democrat elected on a war unity ticket with Lincoln, refused to attend U.S. Grant’s inauguration after the Radical Republicans impeached but failed to convict Johnson.
President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump gave one last address from the runway apron at Andrews Air Force Base before flying home to Florida. Like farewell addresses by previous presidents, the remarks included thanks to family and those who worked with them, along with both a list of accomplishments and notes of caution about the direction the new administration was likely to take.
Transcript of President Donald Trump’s final speech as president [emphasis added]:
Thank you. Thank you very much. Thank you.
[Crowd chants: “We love you”]
Thank you very much, and we love you. And I can tell you that from the bottom of my heart.
This has been an incredible four years. We’ve accomplished so much together.
I want to thank all of my family and my friends and my staff and so many other people for being here. I want to thank you for your effort, your hard work. People have no idea how hard this family work. And they worked for you.
They could have had a much easier life, but they just did a fantastic job. I just want to thank all of you, everyone. I want to thank Mark Meadows who’s here someplace right there I want to thank Mark.
But it’s been, it’s been something very special, we’ve accomplished a lot, our first lady has been a woman of great grace and beauty and dignity. And so popular with the people, so popular with the people, in fact, honey, would you like to say a few words?
[Melania Trump]: Being your first lady was my greatest honour. Thank you for your love and your support, you will be in my thoughts and prayers. God bless you all. God bless your families, and God bless this beautiful nation.
Donald Trump]: What else has to be said, right? But what we’ve done – that’s true, honey. Great job. What we’ve done has been amazing, by any standard, we rebuilt the United States military, created a new force called Space Force that, in itself, would be a major achievement for a regular administration, we were not a regular administration
We took care of the vets – 91 percent approval rating they’ve never had that before, the vets have given us the VA, the vets have given us an approval rating like has never been before. We took care of our vets and beautiful vets they were very badly treated before we came along. And as you know, we get them great service and we pick up the bill and they can go out and they can see a doctor, if they have to wait long periods of time. We got it so that we can, sadly, get rid of people that don’t treat our vets properly. We didn’t have any of those rights before when I came on. So, our vets are happy, our people are happy. Our military is thrilled.
We also got tax cuts, the largest tax cut and reform in the history of our country by far. I hope they don’t raise your taxes. But if they do, I told you so!
If you look at the regulations which I consider the regulation cuts to be maybe even more important. That’s why we have such good and have had such good job numbers. The job numbers have been absolutely incredible.
What we started had we not been hit by the pandemic, we would have had numbers that would never have been seen. Already our numbers are the best ever.
If you look at what happened until February, a year ago, our numbers were at a level that nobody had ever seen before. And even now we really built it twice. We got hit, nobody blames us for that, the whole world got it and then we built it again. And now the stock market is actually substantially higher than it was at its higher point prior to the pandemic. So it’s really – you could say, we built it twice.
And you’re gonna see, you’re gonna see incredible numbers start coming in. If everything is sort of left alone and be careful, very complex. Be careful. But you’re gonna see some incredible things happening. And remember us when you see these things happening, if you – remember us because I’m looking at – I’m looking at elements of our economy that are set to be a rocket ship up. It’s a rocket ship up.
We have the greatest country in the world. We have the greatest economy in the world and as bad as the pandemic was, we were hit so hard just like the entire world was hit so hard, places that don’t they got away with it didn’t get away with it, they’re suffering right now. We did something that is really considered a medical miracle. They’re calling it a miracle. And that was the vaccine.
We got the vaccine developed in nine months instead of nine years, or five years, or 10 years. A long time. It was supposed to take a long time, many, many years to develop a vaccine. We have two out. We have another one coming almost immediately, and it really is a great achievement. So, you should start to see really good numbers over the next few months. I think you’re going to see those numbers really skyrocket downward
The first thing we have to do is pay our respects and our love to the incredible people and families who suffered so gravely from the China virus. It’s a horrible thing that was put onto the world. We all know where it came from, but it’s a horrible, horrible thing. So be very careful. Be very, very careful, but we want to pay great love, great love to all of the people that have suffered, including families who have suffered so gravely.
So with that, I just want to say, you are amazing people. This is a great, great country. It is my greatest honour and privilege to have been your president.
I will always fight for you. I will be watching, I will be listening. And I will tell you that the future of this country has never been better.
I wish the new administration, great luck and great success. I think they’ll have great success. They have the foundation to do something really spectacular. And again, we put it in a position like it’s never been before. Despite the worst plague to hit since I guess you’d say 1917, over 100 years ago. And despite that, despite that, the things that we’ve done have been just incredible. And I couldn’t have done it without you.
So, just a goodbye. We love you. We will be back in some form.
And again, I want to just, in leaving, I want to thank our Vice President Mike Pence and Karen. I want to thank Congress cause we really worked well with Congress, at least certain elements in Congress. But we really did. We’ve gotten so much done that nobody thought would be possible but I do want to thank Congress and I want to thank all of the great people of Washington, DC, all of the people that we worked with to put this miracle together.
So, have a good life. We will see you soon. Thank you. Thank you very much. Thank you very much. Thank you.
* From the official White House biography of John Quincy Adams, before it was edited by lefists:
Within the one and only party–the Republican–sectionalism and factionalism were developing, and each section put up its own candidate for the Presidency. Adams, the candidate of the North, fell behind Gen. Andrew Jackson in both popular and electoral votes, but received more than William H. Crawford and Henry Clay. Since no candidate had a majority of electoral votes, the election was decided among the top three by the House of Representatives. Clay, who favored a program similar to that of Adams, threw his crucial support in the House to the New Englander.
Upon becoming President, Adams appointed Clay as Secretary of State. Jackson and his angry followers charged that a “corrupt bargain” had taken place and immediately began their campaign to wrest the Presidency from Adams in 1828.
Well aware that he would face hostility in Congress, Adams nevertheless proclaimed in his first Annual Message a spectacular national program. He proposed that the Federal Government bring the sections together with a network of highways and canals, and that it develop and conserve the public domain, using funds from the sale of public lands. In 1828, he broke ground for the 185-mile C & 0 Canal.
Adams also urged the United States to take a lead in the development of the arts and sciences through the establishment of a national university, the financing of scientific expeditions, and the erection of an observatory. His critics declared such measures transcended constitutional limitations.
The campaign of 1828, in which his Jacksonian opponents charged him with corruption and public plunder, was an ordeal Adams did not easily bear. After his defeat he returned to Massachusetts, expecting to spend the remainder of his life enjoying his farm and his books.
Unexpectedly, in 1830, the Plymouth district elected him to the House of Representatives, and there for the remainder of his life he served as a powerful leader. Above all, he fought against circumscription of civil liberties.
In 1836 southern Congressmen passed a “gag rule” providing that the House automatically table petitions against slavery. Adams tirelessly fought the rule for eight years until finally he obtained its repeal.
** From the official White House biography of Martin Van Buren, before it was edited by lefists:
Van Buren devoted his Inaugural Address to a discourse upon the American experiment as an example to the rest of the world. The country was prosperous, but less than three months later the panic of 1837 punctured the prosperity.
Basically, the trouble was the 19th-century cyclical economy of “boom and bust,” which was following its regular pattern, but Jackson’s financial measures contributed to the crash. His destruction of the Second Bank of the United States had removed restrictions upon the inflationary practices of some state banks; wild speculation in lands, based on easy bank credit, had swept the West. To end this speculation, Jackson in 1836 had issued a Specie Circular requiring that lands be purchased with hard money–gold or silver.
In 1837 the panic began. Hundreds of banks and businesses failed. Thousands lost their lands. For about five years the United States was wracked by the worst depression thus far in its history.
Programs applied decades later to alleviate economic crisis eluded both Van Buren and his opponents. Van Buren’s remedy–continuing Jackson’s deflationary policies–only deepened and prolonged the depression.
Declaring that the panic was due to recklessness in business and overexpansion of credit, Van Buren devoted himself to maintaining the solvency of the national Government. He opposed not only the creation of a new Bank of the United States but also the placing of Government funds in state banks. He fought for the establishment of an independent treasury system to handle Government transactions. As for Federal aid to internal improvements, he cut off expenditures so completely that the Government even sold the tools it had used on public works.
Inclined more and more to oppose the expansion of slavery, Van Buren blocked the annexation of Texas because it assuredly would add to slave territory–and it might bring war with Mexico.
Defeated by the Whigs in 1840 for reelection, he was an unsuccessful candidate for President on the Free Soil ticket in 1848. He died in 1862.