President Donald Trump on Saturday entertained a major conservative gathering and slammed the “hate-filled left-wing mob” that has tried but failed to oust him.
In a speech closing out the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), the president said: “I never knew the swamp was so bad. It’s really bad, but we’re winning, and we’re winning not easy. A lot of dirty people, a lot of very, very bad people — bad people.”
Trump added: “I do think justice will be had. … Or I wouldn’t be very happy right now.”
The theme at the annual CPAC gathering was “America vs. Socialism.”
Trump also hailed his administration’s deal with the Taliban which is aimed at bringing thousands of U.S. troops home and ending the 18-year war in Afghanistan which began after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
“American forces cannot be the policemen for the entire world — a lot of time we’re not even appreciated, taken for granted,” he said.
“We signed a deal with the Taliban so that we can hopefully begin the immediate process of finally bringing our troops back home,” Trump said. “19 years…We just signed it. We really have to thank the families and those incredible people who lost their lives.”
Trump, added: “The Taliban are great fighters. They’re great fighters. You could ask the former Soviet Union.”
The United States signed a peace treaty with Taliban militants on Saturday.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, speaking in front of Taliban leaders in Doha, Qatar, called the agreement a “true test” of their commitment to peace.
“We will closely watch the Taliban’s compliance with their commitments and calibrate the pace of our withdrawal to their actions. This is how we will ensure that Afghanistan never again serves as a base for international terrorists,” he said.
Trump also praised Republicans for sticking together. He added: “Except Romney.”
The crowd at CPAC booed Romney, who voted to convict Trump on the abuse of power article on impeachment approved by the House.
“He got some good publicity,” Trump said. “He’s a low life.”
Trump then took aim at the field of 2020 Democratic presidential candidates.
The biggest laugh of the speech, some attendees said, came when Trump crouched down and peered over the podium when he went after “mini Mike” Bloomberg’s debate debut: “Get me off the stage, get me off the stage.”
Trump said: “That was probably the worst debate performance of any presidential debate.”
“Boy, did Pocahontas destroy him,” Trump continued, while diverting momentarily to mock Elizabeth Warren’s Native American ancestry test. “And look what I did to her — she went out and got a test. Remember when I said I have more Indian blood in me than she does, and I have none. Would love to have some, but I have none. … She was really mean to mini Mike.”
Trump also slammed Bloomberg for spending hundreds of millions of his personal money on his presidential race, saying he “writes checks like a drunken sailor” and has “very bad people” advising him.
“I know some of his people, they are ripping him off, they’re bad people and they are laughing all the way to the bank,” Trump said. ” ‘Keep running, Mike. Keep doing it Mike.’ “
Trump went on to take a “poll” of the audience, asking them to “scream like hell” for the candidate “you think I should run against…in other words, because we’re going to beat him,” giving the audience the choice between Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden.
CPAC attendees screamed louder for Sanders, giving a standing ovation.
“Joe’s not going to be running the government — he’s going to be sitting in a home somewhere,” Trump said.
Trump also mocked Biden for his frequent campaign trail gaffes, including misstating the number of gun deaths in America during last week’s debate.
Trump later shifted to national security and border security, saying his administration has taken “the most aggressive action to control our borders. We intend to keep radical Islamist terrorists the hell out of our country, and we’re keeping them out,” Trump said.
The president’s address to CPAC came after he gave a press conference on coronavirus at the White House earlier in the day where he assured the nation, while also announcing new travel restrictions.
During his speech, he offered help to nations affected, like Iran, saying: “All they have to do is ask.”
Vice President Mike Pence addressed CPAC Thursday, warning conservatives against socialism — saying: “Freedom works. Socialism doesn’t.”
Pence made the case for Trump’s re-election: “Elections are about choices. The choice has never been clearer, the stakes have never been higher. Men and women of CPAC, we’ve got work to do. The truth is, it won’t be enough to win the next election. We’ve got to win the next generation.”