Trump talks immigration, health care during Nashville rally

President Donald Trump spoke at the Hermitage to state leaders and supporters prior to addressing supporters at the Municipal Auditorium. (SOURCE: Rep. Ron Gant/Facebook)
President Donald Trump spoke at the Hermitage to state leaders and supporters prior to addressing supporters at the Municipal Auditorium. (SOURCE: Rep. Ron Gant/Facebook)

NASHVILLE, TN (WMC) - President Donald Trump touched down for his first official visit to Tennessee as president at 3:45 p.m. Wednesday after spending the afternoon in Detroit.

Shortly after taking the stage, a protester was removed from the Trump rally after disrupting the president while he was speaking.

It didn't take Trump long to address the issue of the wall between America and Mexico.

"The wall is way ahead of schedule in terms of where we are; it's under design and you are going to see some good things happening," Trump said. "We are gonna get a good price."

"The order he blocked was a watered-down version of the first order, that was also blocked by another judge and should have never been blocked to start with," Trump said. "This new order was tailored to the dictates of the 9th Circuit, in my opinion, flawed ruling. This is, the opinion of many, an unprecedented judicial overreach."

Trump said the ruling gave the wrong impression of the country.

"This ruling makes us look weak, which by the way we no longer are," he said.

Trump said he was going to enforce the trade rules and bring back jobs. He also said since he took office, there has been a 61 percent decrease in immigration and a 40 percent decrease of illegal immigration at the southern border.

Although he did not address some of the issues supporters were hoping he would address, such as the wiretapping and surveillance, he did end his speech by talking about health care - emphasizing his commitment to repeal and replace the Affordable Healthcare Act.

"If we leave Obamacare in place, millions and millions of people will be forced off their plans. Your senators just told me that in your state, you're down to practically no insurers," Trump said.

He said he would work on reducing the price of prescription medications, as well as creating a version of a new health care plan that would enable him to receive the 60 needed votes to get Obamacare repealed and replaced.

In addition to hitting on health care and immigration, he restated his commitment to making the country safe and to doing something about drugs coming across the Mexico border into the country. He also said he was going to protect the American flag.

"We are going to restore respect for our country and for its great and very beautiful flag," Trump said.

He also said once he gets past working on health care, he is going to take on taxes.

"We're going to reduce your taxes and I want to start that process so quickly," Trump said. "Gotta get the health care done, gotta start the tax reductions."

Trump ended his speech with the slogan that helped land him in the White House, "We're going to Make America Great Again," and said that everyone was created equal.

"We're all made by the same God," Trump said.

Supporters talk about why they came to see Trump

Dawn Phipps and her husband went to the rally, hoping to hear more about health care reform and how the president plans to bring the country together.

"Because as Trump says we all can be so much better when we come together as one and not be so divided," she said.

Alisha Scarborough hopes Trump's rally in Nashville will help to garner him more support.

"We love the president and are standing behind him 100 percent," Alisha Scarborough said. "Even though he gets a lot of criticism, you know, you have to give him a chance like everybody else. I think he is going to do great things for our country."

Thousands of people endured less than desirable temperatures and the lines to get inside wrapped around Nashville Municipal Auditorium. Some supporters said it is all about showing the president they support him.

"He needs to know what he is doing, we believe in him," Phipps said.

This is the second rally the president has held since taking office. Just two months into his presidency, two key issues remain top of mind for Americans.

"I do think he may need to touch on that [health care], so it can calm the fears," Phipps said.

Trump's visit at Andrew Jackson's Hermitage

Trump was the 14th president to visit Andrew Jackson's home. The last president to tour the historic home was Ronald Reagan in 1982.

A lot of people have compared to Trump to Jackson, some calling out similarities in their demeanor, representing the anti-establishment, and being very controversial.

"Today, I call attention to another anniversary, the 250th birthday of the very great Andrew Jackson," Trump said. "He loved Tennessee and so do I."

Trump said people are "proud again of our country."

He recalled the history and life of President Andrew Jackson and how some of the things Jackson endured sound "familiar."

Trump said when Jackson won the presidency, leaders called Jackson's victory "mortifying and sickening ... oh boy, does that sound familiar." He recalled how Jackson lost both of his parents in death at an early age, yet rose to great accomplishments in the military and eventually became president.

"From poverty and obscurity, Jackson rose to glory and greatness," Trump said. "Today, the portrait of this orphan son who rose to the presidency hangs in the Oval Office."

Trump ended his address at the Hermitage by saying they will build on Jackson's legacy. The president also laid a wreath at Jackson's tomb during his visit.

"We thank you [Jackson] for your service, we honor your memory, we build on your legacy, and we thank God for the United States of America," Trump said.

CEO of The Andrew Jackson Foundation Howard Kittell said he believes the parallels between Trump and Jackson motivated the visit.

"We like to think that the fact that the president was coming on Andrew Jackson's 250th birthday, that he was coming to Nashville, wasn't a coincidence. We don't know for sure, but we'd like to think that," Kittell said.

Protesters gather in Downtown Nashville

Protesters carried signs outside Nashville Municipal Auditorium to protest Trump's presidency and the rally itself.

In addition, State Representative Sherry Jones (D-Nashville) announced on Facebook that she would not be attending Trump's rally. She said the reasons included not wanting to "honor a man who wants to stop health care coverage for all people, who wants to take away women's rights to live their lives as they choose, who has made terrible comments about women, people of other nationalities and people with disabilities."

Her post continued to say she did not want her grandchildren believing she honors or accepts those type of actions.

"I don't want my grandchildren to think that I condone or respect his statements or actions. I don't want them to think that I don't believe in protecting the environment or that unions have not played a major part in seeing to it that people work in safe conditions or get vacation days, sick pay, maternity leave or have a 5 day work week. I don't want my grandchildren to think that lying is OK with me or that's not a big deal.....I just want them to realize that you don't have to pretend you respect a politician who doesn't respect others or care about them."

Jones is the state representative for District 59, Davidson County, in Tennessee.

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