Trump uses Orlando shooting to hammer home talking points

U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump © Brian Snyder
Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump addressed the nation in an “anti-terrorism” speech in New Hampshire on Monday.

Trump condemned the mass shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, describing the shooting by a “radical Islamic” as “an attack on the right of every single American to live in peace in their own country” and “an assault on the ability of free people to live their lives, love who they want, and express their identity.”

READ MORE: Mass shooting at Orlando gay nightclub

Trump blamed the “current politically correct response” for crippling the country’s ability to act decisively. “If we don’t get tough, if we don’t get smart, and fast, we’re not going to have our country any more. There will be nothing ‒ absolutely nothing left,” he said.

Pointing to shooter Omar Mateen’s Afghani heritage, Trump said, “The bottom line is that the only reason the killer was in America in the first place was because we allowed his family to come here.”

Describing the current immigration system as “dysfunctional” and the current administration as “incompetent,” Trump warned that even if he is elected, “that will not change over the next four years.”

“But if I get in there, it’s going to change and it’s going to change quickly,” he continued. “We’re going from totally incompetent to just the opposite, believe me.”

“With 50 people dead and perhaps more ultimately, and dozens more wounded, we cannot afford to talk around issues anymore,” Trump said, before reminding the crowd that he had called for a ban on Muslims from entering the US following the San Bernardino massacre, and how it was met with “great scorn and anger” at the time, adding that now “many are saying I was right to do so.”

Citing “hundreds of thousands” of immigrants entering the States, Trump promised to “suspend immigration from areas of the world where there is a proven history of terrorism against the US, Europe, and our allies.”

Trump said that the ban would be a temporary measure and after a “full impartial ‒ really, long overdue ‒ security assessment, we will develop a responsible immigration policy that serves the interests and values of America.”

“Many of the principles of radical Islam are incompatible with Western values and institutions,” Trump said, reminding the crowd that “radical Islam is anti-woman, anti-gay and anti-America.”

“We’re importing radical Islamic terrorism into the West through a failed immigration system, and through an intelligence community held back by our president,” he said.

Trump then turned to presidential rival Hillary Clinton, berating her for refusing to say the word “radical Islamic terrorism, despite so many attacks,” which he says “broadcasts weakness across the entire world.”

Trump said she has been forced to say the words, thanks to his challenging her on the issue, and that she supports “so much of what is wrong with this country.”

Clinton “has no clue about what radical Islam is, and she won’t speak honestly about it,” Trump explained, before referring to a statement made by Clinton defending her non-use of the phrase. “‘Muslims are peaceful, tolerant people and have nothing whatsoever to do with terrorism',” he quoted to boos from the crowd.

Trump toed the National Rifle Association’s party line by accusing Clinton of wanting to “take away Americans’ guns, and then admit the very people who want to slaughter us.”

“I will be meeting with the NRA, which has given me their earliest endorsement in a presidential race to discuss how to ensure Americans have the means to protect themselves in this age of terror,” he said, before adding, “I will be always defending the Second Amendment.”

Trump said the burden was on Clinton to explain why immigration should be increased without having an effective screening system, claiming, “We’re being laughed at all over the world.”

The businessman argued that Clinton could not “claim to be a friend of the gay community, as long as she continues to immigration policies that bring Islamic extremists to our country.” 

“She can’t have it both ways,” he said.

Trump called for the Muslim community to “work with us” to report suspicions, claiming they “know what's going on.”

Turning to the LGBT community, Trump said what is happening “is so sad,” and called the current administration’s policies “a disgrace to that community.”

“Ask yourself, who is really the friend of women and the LB- and LGBT community? Donald Trump with actions, or Hillary Clinton with her words?” he asked.

Trump reasoned that the Obama administration’s decision to overthrow the regime in Libya while Clinton was secretary of state “without plans for the day after,” as well as its intention to bring about regime change in Syria, had “created space for IS to expand and grow.”

Trump called for NATO to focus on terrorism, claiming NATO’s recent announcement of a new initiative to do just that was thanks to his comments.

In conclusion, Trump vowed to protect all Americans inside US borders, saying “all Americans living here and following our laws will be protected,” before promising to “make America great again.”

In the wake of his rally, Trump revoked the press credentials of the Washington Post.