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(The Washington Stand)—Former President Donald Trump has promised he will pardon or commute the sentences of sidewalk counselors, pro-life advocates, and “every political prisoner who’s been unjustly persecuted by the Biden administration” on the first day he returns to office, he told the 2023 Pray Vote Stand Summit on Friday.
Trump also vowed he would prohibit transgender procedures for children and prosecute left-wing officials who enacted laws that facilitate children to run away from home and begin to receive transgender procedures.
The 45th president shared these and other specific policies during his speech, which closed Friday’s proceedings at the conservative Christian summit, hosted by FRC Action. And he said, “Americans of faith are the soul of our country.”
Trump said he will overturn the Biden administration’s attempt to criminalize its political opponents—a fate the president says conservatives have in common.
“Marxists and Stalinists in the administration got a Washington, D.C., jury to convict five pro-life activists who are now facing up to 11 years in prison for simple acts of protest,” said Trump inside the Omni Shoreham Hotel.
Five members of the Progressive Anti-Abortion Uprising—Lauren Handy, John Hinshaw, Heather Idoni, William Goodman, and Herb Geraghty—were convicted in August of violating the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act over their protest at the Washington Surgi-Clinic abortion facility.
“Under [President Joe] Biden, others are being sentenced to 10, 15, and even 20 years in prison for retribution for their political beliefs, while Antifa and other groups burn-down cities like Portland, like Minneapolis. … They kill people, they loot, they plunder, and they go free.”
“To reverse these cruel travesties of justice, tonight I’m announcing that the moment I win the election, I will appoint a special task force to rapidly review the cases of every political prisoner who’s been unjustly persecuted by the Biden administration … so that I can study the situation very quickly and sign their pardons or commutations on Day One,” the president said. “Never again will the federal government be used to target religious believers.”
Targeting believers threatens the very essence of the United States, said the former president.
For nearly 250 years, our nation has been propelled by the power of prayer and guided by the hand of God in Heaven. It was faith that led the Pilgrims across the perilous seas of Plymouth Rock. They came to Plymouth Rock, and that was a long, arduous, and deadly journey. It was faith that moved our Founding Fathers to change history forever and proclaim that our rights do not come from anywhere other than from our Creator. And it was unflinching faith that inspired generations of pastors and patriots, chaplains and soldiers, farmers, workers, laborers, and pioneers to make America the greatest country in the history of the world.
“It was God-fearing patriots like you who built this country, and it is God-fearing patriots like you who are going to save our country,” Trump added. “Americans of faith are not a threat to our country; Americans of faith are the soul of our country.”
“Through four magnificent years, I was proud to be your relentless champion for freedom, for life, for liberty, and for the great biblical traditions of Western civilization,” he said.
With patriots on his side, “this election will decide whether America will be ruled by Marxists, fascists, communist tyrants who want to smash the Judeo-Christian heritage, or whether America will be saved by God-fearing, freedom-loving patriots like all of the people in this room,” said Trump. “We’re going to take back our culture. And we’re going to make America great again, greater than ever before.”
Persecution is a shared activity on the Right, said Trump, who has been indicted multiple times by liberal prosecutors.
“The radical Left is coming after all of us, because they know that our allegiance is not to them; our allegiance is to our country and to our Creator,” said Trump. Under the Biden administration, America has become “like a banana republic. We’re like a Third World country.”
The former president then turned to a number of policies he plans to enact if he wins the 2024 presidential election, which would make him only the second president in history to serve two nonconsecutive terms in office.
“Probably No. 1 on my list … I will sign a law prohibiting child sexual mutilation—think of it, sexual mutilation—in all 50 states,” Trump said, expressing disbelief he had to address the issue. “They mutilate our children and we’re not going to let that happen.”
He also took aim at “California’s depraved new laws that strip parents of parental rights and that encourage minors to be transported across state lines for sexual mutilation,” he said. “And we will prosecute those involved in this sick California scheme for violating federal laws against kidnapping, sex trafficking, child abuse, and the deprivation of their civil rights.”
Trump also promised to clear out the federal bureaucracy indoctrinating students in extreme gender ideology.
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“I will close immediately the Department of Education and we will move everything back to the states,” Trump said to applause, repeating a policy embraced by Ronald Reagan during his 1980 landslide victory over Jimmy Carter. (Trump allowed, “We’ll keep a few people there just to make sure they’re guaranteeing they’re going to teach English.”)
He endorsed school choice and promised to “sign a new executive order to cut federal funding for any school pushing critical race theory, transgender insanity, and other inappropriate racial, sexual, or political content on our children,” as well as denying taxpayer funding to any school with a COVID-19 mask or vaccine mandate.
Clearing out the federal education bureaucracy constitutes one step of his plan to “totally obliterate the deep state,” the hive of unelected bureaucrats who draft regulations and enforce, or refuse to enforce, existing laws according to their own whim.
Trump took pride in appointing three of the six Supreme Court justices who voted to overturn the Roe v. Wade decision last June. The Dobbs ruling “moves the issue back to the states, which all legal scholars wanted on both sides,” said Trump.
The former president added that Democrats “are the radical ones” on abortion. “They’ll kill babies in the fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth month. And they’ll even kill babies, in some cases, after birth.” Trump, who won more votes than any sitting president in history, said Republicans have to address abortion head-on, “and if they don’t speak about it correctly, they’re not going to win.”
The Supreme Court also won Trump’s praise for its ruling in Students for Fair Admissions, which eliminated race-conscious affirmative action programs in college admissions and reinstitute “merit-based education again.”
Trump invoked the Bible when he promised to end the war between Russia and Ukraine because the world is perilously “close to World War III.”
“As the Bible says, ‘Blessed are the peacemakers.’ And I was a peacemaker,” said Trump, quoting the Sermon on the Mount. “We got out of Syria. We got out of Iraq. We defeated ISIS.”
The president held up his record on religious liberty, supporting the Little Sisters of the Poor, not enforcing the Johnson Amendment, ending “Barack Hussein Obama’s hateful and bigoted assault on faith-based adoption and foster care services,” and opposing religious persecution overseas.
On illegal immigration, Trump praised the “patriots” in the Border Patrol, whose hands have been tied by the Biden administration. “I will also use Title 42 to end the child trafficking crisis by returning all trafficked children to their families in their home countries immediately,” he said. Quoting actor Jim Caviezel’s dialogue in “Sound of Freedom,” Trump declared, “God’s children are not for sale.”
He promised to return to his fiscal policy of economic nationalism (especially against China), further tax reductions and regulatory reform, forecasting that the economic rebound will produce more revenue, as it did during his first term in office.
Trump also highlighted the importance of reliable news outlets. “We are a nation that no longer has a free and fair press. Fake news is all you get, and they are the true enemy of the people.”
Playing dramatic music underneath his speech, Trump highlighted the decline of the nation under his successor. “We are a nation that has lost its confidence, it has lost its willpower, and it has lost its strength. We are a nation that, quite frankly, has lost its way,” he said, vowing to reverse the damage in one year.
“We will take back our country with a righteous and magnificent victory on Election Day 2024.”