Workers at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima were treated to vintage Donald Trump during his stop on Wednesday.
Sugar-coating? It didn’t exist.
Opinions? They came mixed with funny stories and straight-forward assaults.
An ego? Only one of the biggest of any of our nation’s previous chief executives.
Below are 10 memorable moments:
What a voice
Following the national anthem, people had one question: Who was that singer? The answer: Brian Hogan, principal at Waynesfield-Goshen High School. What a voice!
What were they thinking …
People also wondered who picked the music that was played over the speakers. After Trump’s speech ended, the Rolling Stones’ “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” was played, despite the crowd’s generally favorable reaction to the president’s words. Prior to Trump’s arrival, another Rolling Stones’ tune was played: “Sympathy for the Devil.”
Funny story I
When Trump first saw the tanks at the JSMC, he admitted to wanting to take a ride. “But then I remember when a man named Dukakis got into a tank,” the president said. “And I remember him; he tanked when he got into the tank. He tanked — I never saw anybody tank like that. … The helmet was bigger than he was. That was not good.”
Funny story II
Trump sized up Hillary Clinton’s energy plan: “You know, Hillary wanted to put windmills all over the place. Let’s put up some windmills. When the wind doesn’t blow, just turn off the television, darling, please. No wind out today. There’s no wind. Please turn off the television, quickly.”
Funny Story III
Trump was surprised by the youthful appearance of JSMC worker Adam Stahler, 45, of Wapakoneta. Stahler was invited on the stage to speak. His son, Derek, is a specialist with the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment at Fort Hood, Texas. Trump noted, “I thought Adam was the son. Look how young he looks. He’s got a son working out there? Wow. Whatever you’re eating, Adam, keep eating it. It’s working.”
Taking on GM
All joking ended when it came to talking about General Motors’ closing of its Lordstown plant. Trump roared, “Get that plant open or sell it to somebody and they’ll open it. Everybody wants it. Sell it to somebody or open it yourselves. Get it going now and the UAW will help you. … They said they have discussions coming up in September, October. I said, why not tomorrow? Why not on Monday? What do you have to wait months for? Get the discussions going. Get it open.”
… Taking on union leaders
He didn’t enamor himself to union leadership, either. Trump received applause from JSMC workers when he said, “I want to deal with the people in the union, not the heads of the union, because the heads of the union are not honest people.” Trump said he hosted union leaders at the White House a few months ago, and all left praising his administration’s work on the economy. “Then I see one of the guys the next day on a television show — ‘Deface the Nation’ — and he’s saying how he wants Democrat policies.”
Trump started swinging below the belt when – on his own initiative — he started chastising the late John McCain, a Vietnam war hero and beloved Republican U.S. senator from Arizona. It was a personal attack.
“I have to be honest: I’ve never liked him much … probably never will,” Trump said of McCain. “There are certain reasons for it, and I’ll tell you. … John McCain received a fake and phony dossier. Did you hear about the dossier? It was paid for by Crooked Hillary Clinton. And John McCain got it. He got it. And what did he do? He didn’t call me. He turned it over to the FBI, hoping to put me in jeopardy.
Later, after his unprovoked attack, Trump blamed the media for always bringing up his quarrels with McCain.
Trump said he had two simple rules: “Buy American and hire American.”
A promise to JSMC
Trump promised the “days are over” for lean times at the JSMC. “We are rebuilding the American military. We are restoring American manufacturing. And we are once again fighting for our great American workers.”
Jim Krumel is the editor of The Lima News. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org