President Trump Celebrates Congressional Wins, 'Amazing Progress' at Cedar Rapids Rally

Jun 22, 2017

President Donald Trump held a campaign-style rally in Cedar Rapids Wednesday night. Around 6,000 people were there to see his first visit to Iowa as president.

President Trump celebrated recent Republican wins in special congressional elections, touted his accomplishments as president, and criticized Democrats and the media.

"While we are here tonight to celebrate the amazing progress that we’ve already made—and we have made amazing progress—we’re also here to lay out the next steps in our incredible movement to make America great again," Trump said.

He said to expect action on tax reform, infrastructure and healthcare in the next few months.

President Trump said Gov. Kim Reynolds and former governor Terry Branstad told him about health insurance companies leaving Iowa’s Affordable Care Act exchange.

"I think and I hope--I can’t guarantee anything--but I hope we can surprise you with a really good plan," Trump said. "I’ve been talking about a plan with heart. I said, ‘Add some money to it.’ A plan with heart. But Obamacare is dead."

He also accused Democrats of obstructing progress on healthcare legislation, even though Republicans hold a majority in the U.S. House and Senate.

“I’ll tell you about the Democrats," Trump said. "I am making it a little bit hard to get their support, but who cares?"

President Trump said he’s still working to build a wall on the Mexican border. He announced a new idea for the wall, although it’s been previously reported.

"We’re thinking about building the wall as a solar wall," Trump said. "Solar creates energy and pays for itself."

Talking about energy, Trump said he’s brought back jobs in the coal industry and ended the "war on coal."

President Trump went on to list his support for various energy sources. But he also made fun of wind energy in the state that’s the highest producer of wind energy in the country.

"I don’t want to just hope the wind blows to light up your homes and your factories…as the birds fall to the ground."

He also said he’s saving Iowa’s ethanol industry because it’s "under siege."

President Trump touted his leaving of the Paris climate agreement, his approval of two major pipelines and his efforts to get rid of regulations.

Trump also talked about getting Neil Gorsuch confirmed as a Supreme Court Justice and said it’s important that he’s young.

"For a 30 to 40 year period, you’ve influenced this country," Trump said.

President Trump also reiterated one of his signature campaign promises—to renegotiate or end NAFTA.

Lane Atchison of Jefferson City, Missouri, was in line for the rally hours before it started.

"I think there’s a lot of drama right now in the presidency," Atchison said. "I think he could be doing better when it comes to interacting with some of the other people in government. But overall I think he’s keeping some of the promises he made on the campaign trail."

For Kathy Smith of Cedar Rapids, it was her sixth time seeing Trump.

"I think he’s doing great," Smith said. "Unfortunately, the mainstream media doesn’t report the good things he’s doing…I think he’s going to be the best president we ever had."

Inside the arena, Bob Burns of Fairfax, Iowa, said he also thinks Trump is doing great as president.

"And if people would let him be president, things would be much better," Burns said. "But the things he’s done already are tremendous."

There were protests across the street from the arena, and some protesters were escorted out of the arena during the rally.