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Trump Florida rally comes after rough week at White House

Trump attacks media
Trump attacks media 02:45

After a week batting down a string of controversies, President Trump held his first post-inauguration campaign-style rally early Saturday evening at a Florida airport, continuing his tirades against the press over their coverage of his administration. 

“The White House is running so smoothly,” the president said at the rally, which took place at the Orlando-Melbourne International Airport. He pushed back against several media reports showing internal struggles in the executive branch.

He blasted the “dishonest media,” which he said “has published one false story after another, with no sources.”

Trump Florida rally 44:46

“They are part of the corrupt system,” he added. The president also claimed that several founding fathers of the U.S. often railed against the press. 

At the beginning of his rally, he claimed that was holding the campaign-style event, just a month since his inauguration to the White House, because he wanted to speak to the American people “without the filter of the fake news.”

The president announced the rally Wednesday via Twitter. Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, told reporters earlier this week that the event was “run by the campaign.”

Read below for our live blog from the rally. 


6:34 p.m. The president concludes his rally with a call back to his campaign slogan. 

“We’re united together by history and by providence. We will make America strong again,” Mr. Trump promised. “We will make America safe again.”

Trump rallies in Florida 02:18

“We will make America great again,” he promised, “greater than ever before.”

6:28 p.m. President Trump said his movement is “sweeping across the globe.”

“Look at Brexit,” he urged.

The president derided the ease of immigration. 

“Erasing national borders does not make people safer,” he said. “It undermines democracy and trade prosperity.”

6:22 p.m. The president expressed his support for building “safe zones” in Syria and other Middle Eastern countries. 

“We are going to have the Gulf States pay for those safe zones,” Mr. Trump proposed. 

6:19 p.m. The president defended his executive order banning travel to the U.S. for refugees and citizens from seven predominantly Muslim countries.

He read from the executive order, which has been halted by federal courts.

The president summarized it as follows: Basically, “the president has the right to keep people out if he feels it’s not in the best interests of our country.”

He said after the court decisions, the White House is drafting up a new executive order to replace the stalled one. 

Discussing the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decision on the travel ban, he previewed that “we will do something next week.”

“We don’t give up,” he said. “We never give up.” 

Of another contentious policy issue -- this time, the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act, the president said he intends to submit “a great health care plan that’s going to take the place of the disaster known as Obamacare.” 

6:15 p.m. ET President Trump ticks off his executive orders beefing up law enforcement and combatting international drug cartels.

6:08 p.m. ET The president boasts of his deal-making abilities, pointing to the cut costs of the new Air Force One program and the F-35 fighter jets for the U.S. military.

 The president calls a t-shirt clad supporter on the stage, who gives Mr. Trump a hug.

Trump brings up supporter 03:29

“He’s been all over” television, the president said, praising his supporter’s enthusiasm. 

The supporter, a man in a “President Trump” shirt, takes the podium for a few words. 

Afterwards, the president acknowledged that his protective detail was not too happy about the interruption.

“I wouldn’t say Secret Service was thrilled with that, but we know our people,” Mr. Trump said. “We know our people.” 

“I’m only worried he’s gonna give me a kiss!” the president said of the supporter. “A star is born!”

6:00 p.m. ET The president returns to his campaign promises, extolling on how he will make “American workers win” again. 

He promised to strengthen borders, invest in “clean, very clean” coal, lower taxes, and bring to the U.S. millions of new jobs. 

The president said jobs are “coming back in like you haven’t seen in a long time.” He added that there will be no more trade deals where the U.S. is “caught in quick sand.”

5:54 p.m. ET “The White House is running so smoothly,” the president said, pushing back on several media reports that the executive mansion is in disarray. 

“The White House is running smoothly despite inheriting a big mess,” he said.

5:51 p.m. ET President Trump continues his attacks on the “dishonest media,” which he said “has published one false story after another, with no sources.”

“They are part of the corrupt system,” he said.

The president also claimed that several founding fathers of the U.S. often railed against the press. 

5:49 p.m. ET The president takes the stage. 

He notes that he “didn’t know” his wife would be reading a prayer but praised the move. 

He went on to praise the state of Florida, which he called “my second home.” 

“I’m here because I want to be among my friends and among the people,” he added.

5:46 p.m. ET Melania Trump leads the crowd in a prayer before introducing her husband at the political rally.

5:40 p.m. ET President Trump arrives with his wife Melania and descends from Air Force One to greet the crowds to the song “God Bless the USA.”

5:30 p.m. ET To the music of the movie “Air Force One,” the president’s plane pulls up at the airport hangar for the political rally.

4:30 p.m. ET Protesters demonstrating against President Trump’s policies have also gathered around the Orlando-Melbourne International Airport. 

4:00 p.m. ET Throngs of Trump supporters lined up as far as the eye could see, according to CBS News’ Alicia Amling in Florida. As people are processed through security, they have been given red and white pompoms and “Trump-Pence” campaign signs. Other merchandise displayed included hot pink “Women for Trump” signs, red “Make America Great Again” signs, and “Veterans for Trump” signs.

3:30 p.m. ET President Trump said he was “getting ready for leave” for the Orlando-Melbourne International Airport in a Twitter message.

CBS News’ Alicia Amling contributed to this report.

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