President Trump marked his impeachment acquittal with what he called a “celebration” on Thursday by weaving an hour-long speech with rally-esque boasting, shout-outs to loyalists and a dark listing of grievances.
“This is a day of celebration because we went through hell,” Trump said during a gathering in the White House’s East Room filled with Republican members of Congress and other supporters.
After receiving a standing ovation Trump said, “We’ve all been through a lot together, and we probably deserve that hand for all of us because it’s been a very unfair situation.” He added, “This should never, ever happen to another president, ever.”
Trump spoke about how he’s been treated, saying, “We went through hell unfairly.” He then referred back to Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, calling it a “witch hunt” adding, “It was all bullshit.”
Trump continued the “celebration” by casting doubt on Sen. Mitt Romney’s motives for his impeachment guilty vote. Romney spoke about his faith during his speech on the Senate floor while explaining his vote. Trump said the Republican senator from Utah used “religion as a crutch” and that he’s “never heard him use it before.”
“But today, you know, it’s one of those things. But it’s a failed presidential candidate, so things can happen when you fail so badly, running for president,” said Trump, who endorsed Romney for president in 2012.
While giving a shoutout to the other senator from Utah, Republican Mike Lee, Trump continued his pettiness against Romney and said, “Say hello to the people of Utah, and tell them I’m sorry about Mitt Romney.” Trump continued, saying Lee is “by far the most popular senator from the state.”
The “celebration” grew darker when Trump turned his attention to Democrats, Adam Schiff and Nancy Pelosi. “They’re vicious and mean, vicious,” he said. “These people are vicious. Adam Schiff is a vicious, horrible person. Nancy Pelosi is a horrible person.”
Trump added that he thinks Pelosi lies when she says she prays for him. “I doubt she prays at all,” Trump said.
The president then started rambling about his behavior in Ukraine, calling himself a victim, while also seeming to get somewhat paranoid, telling the crowd the Democrats will say, “let’s impeach him” again.
“So we’ll probably have to do it again because these people have gone stone-cold crazy. But I’ve beaten them all my life, and I’ll beat them again if I have to. But what they’re doing is very unfair, very unfair,” Trump said.
The celebratory grievance parade continued, as Trump started in on former FBI director James Comey. The president said Comey and other higherups in the FBI were “dirty cops,” “leakers” and liars.” Trump continued, “Had I not fired James Comey, who was a disaster, by the way, it’s possible I wouldn’t even be standing here right now.”
Trump ended the “celebration” in part, by saying, “I want to apologize to my family for having them have to go through a phony, rotten deal by some very evil and sick people.”