Trump calls on ‘agents of change’

Thou­sands cheer at first pub­lic rally since elec­tion

The Washington Times Daily - - FRONT PAGE - BY SETH MCLAUGH­LIN

Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump urged his sup­port­ers Thursday to be the “agents of change” and to keep the pres­sure on elected lead­ers in Wash­ing­ton to make sure they de­liver on the prom­ises that he laid out in his vic­tory over Hil­lary Clin­ton in the pres­i­den­tial race.

Mr. Trump said he plans to unify the na­tion after the di­vi­sive elec­tion and asked the thou­sands who turned out to see him to “dream big again” as he moves to usher in an era of pros­per­ity at home and peace abroad.

“Ev­ery sin­gle day, you will be the agents of change, change for our coun­try, but good change, great change,” Mr. Trump said at a post­elec­tion rally in Ohio. “Amer­i­cans must ig­nore the pes­simism and em­brace the op­ti­mism that has al­ways been the cen­tral in­gre­di­ent of the Amer­i­can char­ac­ter.

“Amer­i­cans will be the cap­tains of their own destiny once again,” he said, adding, in clas­sic Trump fash­ion, that the peo­ple have pow­ered his move­ment. “I am just re­ally the mes­sen­ger — al­though I have been a very good mes­sen­ger — let’s face it, right? I have been a pretty good mes­sen­ger.”

Fresh off wheedling Car­rier to keep 1,100 jobs in the U.S., Mr. Trump also vis­ited In­di­ana, his first pub­lic ap­pear­ance since the elec­tion, and said other com­pa­nies that threaten to ship their jobs out­side the coun­try will face con­se­quences.

Mr. Trump’s deal with Car­rier, an air con­di­tion­ing man­u­fac­turer that ear­lier this year an­nounced it was ax­ing some 1,400 jobs in In­di­ana, marked an early suc­cess for the novice politi­cian, whose vic­tory last month con­founded an­a­lysts and gave hope to blue-col­lar work­ers who say the econ­omy has aban­doned them.

Mr. Trump vis­ited the Car­rier plant in In­di­ana and held a rally with work­ers, re­hash­ing his cam­paign themes of bor­der se­cu­rity, tax cuts and re­build­ing Amer­i­can man­u­fac­tur­ing.

He again hinted at forc­ing a rene­go­ti­a­tion of the North Amer­i­can Free Trade Agree­ment in an ef­fort to keep jobs from slip­ping into Mex­ico and said cor­po­ra­tions that do con­sider flee­ing should ex­pect a phone call from him.

“Com­pa­nies are not go­ing to leave the United States any­more with­out con­se­quences. It’s not go­ing to hap­pen,” the pres­i­dent-elect vowed.

De­tails of the deal Mr. Trump reached with Car­rier haven’t been re­leased, but the com­pany’s par­ent cor­po­ra­tion said it will mean some 1,100 jobs will re­main in place.

Sen. Ron Wy­den of Ore­gon, the top Demo­crat on the Se­nate Fi­nance Com­mit­tee, vowed to scru­ti­nize the deal from Congress. He said prom­ises of special tax breaks could be a prob­lem.

“Were there any fed­eral tax poli­cies dis­cussed? Were there prom­ises about de­fense con­tracts? I want to know about the cost rel­e­vant to the jobs. I mean, he has not even had a press con­fer­ence now,” Mr. Wy­den told re­porters on Capi­tol Hill.

Mr. Trump is in the mid­dle of fill­ing po­si­tions in his Cabi­net, and he has put for­ward nom­i­nees to lead the Trans­porta­tion, Health and Hu­man Ser­vices, and Ed­u­ca­tion de­part­ments.

At his cam­paign stop in Ohio, the New York bil­lion­aire an­nounced that he would be tap­ping re­tired U.S. Marine Gen. James N. Mat­tis as de­fense sec­re­tary and said the good news about Car­rier is “just the be­gin­ning” of the pos­i­tive eco­nomic news to come on his watch.

“Now is not the time to down­size our dreams, but to set our sights higher than ever be­fore for our coun­try,” Mr. Trump said. “Now is the time to push for real pro­found change that re­stores the full prom­ise of Amer­ica for all of its peo­ple.

“It is time to re­move the rust from the Rust Belt and usher in a new in­dus­trial rev­o­lu­tion,” he said.

Car­rier inked the deal long ago and told em­ploy­ees in Fe­bru­ary that they would be los­ing their jobs to a plant in Mon­ter­rey, Mex­ico.

In the weeks after the elec­tion, though, Car­rier em­ploy­ees said they were count­ing on Mr. Trump to make good on a prom­ise to stop that shift.

Mr. Trump on Thursday said he for­got about the prom­ise, and when he saw it re­played on a tele­vi­sion net­work he re­al­ized he meant it as a “eu­phemism” for all the jobs flee­ing the coun­try, not for Car­rier specif­i­cally. But he said he reached out to com­pany lead­ers and they were able to strike an agree­ment.

Democrats were left con­flicted by Mr. Trump’s suc­cess nearly two months be­fore he takes of­fice.

The In­di­ana Demo­cratic Party called the an­nounce­ment “great news.”

But Sen. Bernard San­ders, the Ver­mont in­de­pen­dent who ran for the Demo­cratic pres­i­den­tial nom­i­na­tion this year, said Car­rier bam­boo­zled Mr. Trump by ex­tract­ing ma­jor con­ces­sions while pledg­ing to keep in place only some of the jobs.

Mr. San­ders said Mr. Trump promised to pun­ish com­pa­nies with puni­tive taxes but ap­pears to have lured Car­rier back with tax cuts.

“In essence, United Tech­nolo­gies took Trump hostage and won. And that should send a shock wave of fear through all work­ers across the coun­try,” Mr. San­ders said.

If Mr. San­ders seemed like he hadn’t left the cam­paign trail, nei­ther did Mr. Trump.

In speeches that were strik­ingly sim­i­lar to his cam­paign ral­lies, the pres­i­dent-elect cov­ered many of his fa­vorite top­ics, in­clud­ing se­cur­ing the bor­der and cut­ting tax rates, as well as re­duc­ing fed­eral reg­u­la­tions and stop­ping refugee set­tle­ments from coun­tries that are ter­ror­ist hot­beds.

He also once again lashed out at re­porters, whom he tus­sled with dur­ing the cam­paign and with whom he has yet to make peace. “I don’t like ’em much, I’ll be hon­est,” he said in In­di­ana.

AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

‘MES­SEN­GER’ Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump greeted a crowd in Ohio on Thursday and said, “Amer­i­cans will be the cap­tains of their own destiny once again.” He also vis­ited a Car­rier plant in In­di­ana that struck a deal to keep jobs from mov­ing to Mex­ico.

AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump greeted work­ers dur­ing a visit to a Car­rier fac­tory Thursday in In­di­anapo­lis, where he gave hope to peo­ple who thought they would lose their jobs.

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