President Donald Trump address the Conservative Police Action Conference on Friday, February 24, 2017.
PRESIDENT TRUMP: Great to be back at CPAC. It's a place I have really — I love this place. I love you people. So thank you very much. First of all, I want to thank Matt Schlapp and his very, very incredible wife and boss, Mercedes, who have been fantastic friends and supporters and so great when I watch them on television defending me; nobody has a chance. So I want to thank Matt and Mercedes.
When Matt called and asked, I said absolutely I'll be there with you.
The real reason I said it, I didn't want him to go against me, so I said absolutely. And it really is an honor to be here. I wouldn't miss a chance to talk to my friends. These are my friends. And we'll see you again next year and the year after that. And I'll be doing this with CPAC whenever I can, and I'll make sure that we're here a lot.
If you remember, my first major speech — sit down, everybody, come on.
You know, the dishonest media, they'll say he didn't get a standing ovation. You know why? No, you know why? Because everybody stood and nobody sat. So they'll say he never got a standing ovation, right?
They are the worst.
So sit down. Donald Trump did not get a standing ovation. They leave out the part they never sat down. They leave that out. So I just want to thank you.
But you know, my first major speech was at CPAC, probably five or six years ago. First major political speech, and you were there. And it was — I loved it. I loved the people, I loved the commotion, and then they did these polls where I went through the roof and I wasn't even running, right? But it gave me an idea. And I got a little bit concerned when I saw what was happening in the country, and I said let's go to it. So it was very exciting.
I walked the stage on CPAC; I'll never forget it, really. I had very little notes and even less preparation. So when you have practically no notes and no preparation and then you leave and everybody was thrilled, I said I think I like this business.
I would have come last year, but I was worried that I'd be at that time too controversial. We wanted border security, we wanted very, very strong military. We wanted all of the things that we're going to get, and people consider that controversial, but you didn't consider it controversial. So I've been with CPAC for a long time. All of these years we've been together, and now you finally have a president, finally. Took you a long time. Took you a long time. And it's patriots like you that made it happen, believe me. You did it because you love your country, because you want a better future for your children, and because you want to make America great again.
The media didn't think we would win. The pundits — you're right — they had an idea. The pundits didn’t think we'd win. The consultants that suck up all that money — oh, they suck it up — they're so good. They're not good at politics, but they're really good at sucking up people's money. Especially my opponents’, because I kept them down to a minimum. But the consultants didn't think we would win. But they all underestimated the power of the people, you, and the people proved them totally wrong. This is so true, and this is what's been happening. Never underestimate the people. Never. I don't think it will ever happen again.
And I want you all to know we are fighting the fake news. It's fake. Phony. Fake. A few days ago I called the fake news the enemy of the people, and they are. They are the enemy of the people. Because they have no sources, they just make them up when there are none. I saw one story recently where they said nine people have confirmed. There are no nine people. I don't believe there was one or two people. Nine people. And I said give me a brea,k because I know the people. I know who they talked to. There were no nine people. But they say nine people. And somebody reads it and they say, oh, nine people, they have nine sources. They make up sources.
They're very dishonest people. In fact, in covering my comments, the dishonest media did not explain that I called the fake news the enemy of the people — the fake news. They dropped off the word “fake”. And all of a sudden the story became the media is the enemy. They take the word “fake” out. And now I'm saying, oh, no, this is no good. But that's the way they are. So I'm not against the media, I'm not against the press. I don't mind bad stories if I deserve them, and I tell you, I love good stories, but we won't talk — I don't get too many of them. But I am only against the fake news media or press. Fake. Fake. They have to leave that word.
I'm against the people that make up stories and make up sources. They shouldn't be allowed to use sources unless they use somebody's name. Let their name be put out there. Let their name be put out. A source says that Donald Trump is a horrible, horrible human being — let them say it to my face. Let there be no more sources. And remember this, and not in all cases. I mean, I had a story yesterday written about me in Reuters by a very honorable man that was a very fair story. There are some great reporters around, they are talented and honest as the day is long; that is great. But there are some terrible, dishonest people that do a tremendous disservice to our country, and to our people.
They are very dishonest people, and they shouldn't use sources. They should put the name of the person. You will see stories dry up like you've never seen before. You have no idea how bad it is because if you are not part of the story — and I put myself in your position sometimes because many of you, you're not part of the story — and if you're not part of the story, you know, then you sort of know if you are part of the story, you know what they're saying is true or not.
So when they make it up and they make up something else, and you saw that before the election — polls, polls. They come out with some of these polls — and some of them got it right. I must say, Los Angeles Times, shocking, they did a great job. We had a couple of others that were right. Generally speaking, I can tell you the network. Somebody said, "A poll came out." I said what network is it?
And they'll say a certain — let's not even mention names, right? Shall we? Well, you have a lot of them. The Clinton News Network is one. Totally. Take a look, honestly. Take a look at their polls over the last two years. You'd think they'd fire the pollster, right? After years and years of getting battered. I mean, who knows, maybe they're just bad at polling. Or maybe they're not legit. But it's one or the other. Look at how inaccurate. Look at CBS, look at ABC also. Look at NBC.
Take a look at some of these polls. That were so bad, so inaccurate. And what that does is it creates a false narrative. It creates this narrative that it's just like we're not going to win. People say I love Trump but I'm not feeling great today. He can't win, so I won't go and vote. It creates a whole false deal, and we have to fight it, folks. We have to fight it. They're very smart, they're very cunning, and they're very dishonest.
So just to conclude, it's a very sensitive topic, and they get upset when we expose their false stories. They say that we can't criticize their dishonest coverage because of the First Amendment. They always bring the the First Amendment. I love the First Amendment. Nobody loves it better than me. Nobody — who uses it more than I do? But the First Amendment gives all of us — it gives it to me it gives it to you, it gives it to all Americans — the right to speak our minds freely. It gives you the right and me the right to criticize fake news and criticize it strongly.
And many of these groups are part of large media corporations that have their own agenda. And it's not your agenda and it's not the country's agenda, it's their own agenda. They have a professional obligation as members of the press to report honestly, but as you saw throughout the entire campaign and even now, the fake news doesn't tell the truth. Doesn't tell the truth. So just in finishing, I say it doesn't represent the people, it never will represent the people, and we're going to do something about it because we have to go out and we have to speak our minds and we have to be honest.
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