President Trump’s son Donald Jr. delivered a rousing keynote speech at the David Horowitz Freedom Center’s Restoration Weekend held in Palm Beach, FL November 14-17, 2019. Speaking about his New York Times number one bestseller Triggered, Donald Trump, Jr. entertained and inspired an audience of nearly 400 attendees. David Horowitz introduced him as “a political leader in the war for the future of our country.” Don’t miss Donald Trump Jr.’s bold remarks in the video below:
David Horowitz: Welcome to the 25th annual Restoration Weekend. We began these gatherings at the Miami Derail Hotel, and that was before Donald Trump bought it, and the Democrats turned it into another way to attack their President and their country. For 27 years after the founding of our Freedom Center in 1988, we were a lonely voice, warning that the political left had declared war on America and was a willing collaborator with America’s enemies abroad and criminals at home. We also warned that the anti-American left was steadily gaining control of the Democratic party. A goal it achieved when it put one of its own in the White House in 2008. All these years, we felt like a voice crying in the wilderness. Democrats attack Republicans as racists, sexists, homophobes, and Islamophobes. Republicans and Conservatives generally called Democrats Liberals. They’re not Liberals. We scolded our political friends. They are vindictive bigots. They’re radicals, and they hate America.
Our isolation and misery ended the day Donald J. Trump threw his hat in the political ring and promised to put America first again. I was completely taken with this gutsy patriot the moment he descended the tower and spoke the first, honest words about the invasion on our Southern borders that any public figure, Republican or Democrat, had ever uttered. Trump and the Trump family are fighters in a way that Republicans have not been since Ronald Regan, or more likely, since Abraham Lincoln. I did have some nagging thoughts in the early days of the primaries. Donald Trump was too edgy, and off-the-cuff, and too self-confident not to raise concerns as to where he might eventually be going. The attacks on him by Republicans and Democrats alike were so nasty and extreme that I looked for some reassuring sign, that this man was a man of character, who was going to live up to his word and not take us over the cliff. I found that sign in his family, a member of which is with us today. We are honored to host him. I am something of an expert on the difficulties of motivating the signs of famous and wealthy families and keeping them on course.
With Peter Collier, I co-authored three best-selling biographies of the Rockefellers, the Kennedys, and the Fords. The Rockefeller dynasty produced many children, but none able to manage their business empire, or who even amounted to much. The Kennedys produced one President and many embarrassments, drugs, scandals, and early deaths, but when Donald Trump turned to politics, he was able to place his business empire securely in the hands of his three incredibly capable and accomplished children. When he decided to run for President, those same children appeared with him on the political stage and became important agents of his political machine and assets for his political future. Trump accomplished this despite the obstacles of three divorces, the distractions of a public life, and the fact that he was still building his business empire while parenting his children. When I saw this achievement, I put all doubts behind me and embraced his political cause.
We are privileged to have Donald Trump’s youngest son, Don Jr., with us this morning. He is here in connection with his new book, Triggered. Well, you all have it on your tables, Triggered, which I strongly recommend to anyone interested in the battles he and his father have had to wage. Anyone curious as to how a Trump’s son is brought up and what he believes, and anyone interested in how astutely he understands and is at war with the destructive left. In my mind, this is particularly important because I not only believe there will be a Trump second term, but in 2024, there will probably be a Trump to lead this war as well. Don Jr.’s book is actually a page-turner and a particularly rich trove of information. It delivers more insight and humor than you probably expect. For example, you might wonder how Don Jr., the younger son, got the dynastic name. According to Triggered, it was his mother who gave it to him. “When my mother first approached my father with the idea of naming me Don Jr., my father is rumored to have said, ‘We can’t do that. What if he’s a loser.’ Again, no idea whether my father ever really said this, but it sure sounds like him.”
How did Trump Sr. shape and motivate his son to be worthy of the Trump name? Triggered provides many answers, but here’s one I especially liked. When he was 17, Don Jr. was given a job working the Trump Casino in Atlantic City, where he was surrounded by beautiful women and beautiful vistas, made hundreds of dollars in tips a day and enjoyed an exceptionally good life for a young man. Then he was promoted to a more responsible job, clearing development land for future Trump projects. Here is how Don Jr. describes his reactions to the new job. “I thought, I used to make hundreds of dollars in tips, smelling nothing but sunscreen and saltwater, and now, I’m in mud and sawdust up to my knees, wiping dirt out of my eyes, and working around sweaty dudes for less money. I decided to ask my father for a raise. I assumed that he would immediately raise my pay and commend me for realizing how unfair the system was to working guys like me.” In Triggered, Don Jr. describes what followed in a one-scene play. First, alerting the reader that, “Don Jr. does not have a major speaking role in the play.” The scene is set in the dining room in Trump Tower, with Donald J. Trump seated at the head. Enter Don Jr. with very long hair, probably wearing cargo shorts and a camouflage t-shirt. Don Jr., “Dad, I’ve realized that even though I’m doing more work on the jobsite, you are paying me way less money for it. Why didn’t I get a raise?” Dad, “Well, you didn’t ask me for more money, so I didn’t give you more money. That’s how the world works. Why would I give you more money than you’re willing to work for? That would make me an idiot.” Don Jr., “I, er.” Dad, “Why would I do that? You think people are going to give you more money just because you’re a nice guy? They’re not, Donny. Anything you want, you have to go out and get it. Nothing is going to be handed to you. Nothing. You have to earn it before you ask for it. Always remember, you don’t get anything you don’t ask for.”
The lesson Don Jr. learned was as true in the boardroom of Trump Tower as it is out on the campaign trail. “As I learned time and time again in 2016, if you want someone to vote for you, you have to go to work and earn that vote. If you want a donation, you need to explain where the money is going to go and why you need it. You shouldn’t take anyone’s support for granted, and once you get that support, it’s time to enact policies that will make the people who gave you their vote proud that they did.”
Donald Trump Jr. is a formidable young man in his own right. He’s a gusty and sharp-tongued fighter who knows the left for what it is. He is already a political leader in the war for the future of our country. We are honored and proud to have him as our speaker this morning.
Donald Trump, Jr.: Thank you very much, David. I truly appreciate it. It’s great to be here. The last part of that story that you were talking about with the job was I then tried going retroactive to earlier in the summer with the raise, and that failed more miserably than anything else I’ve ever tried in my life, but at least, the lesson stuck. Sometimes you need a little bit more to make that happen, but thank you again for being here, and thank you to everyone in the room. It’s great to be here.
Watching the mainstream media lose their minds over the last day or two, when I became a New York Times number one best-seller, has been rather awesome, and it sort of depicts very well the outrage cycle in which we live. They tried doing this thing today. I just spoke out about it on Fox and Friends. They started saying well, there were bulk sales with Donald Trump Jr.’s book. I go, explain that to me. They’re like, well, the RNC bought some books. I go, that’s true. They did. They bought books. They marked them up 300 percent and sold them to individuals within minutes, so how is that a bulk sale? That seems like it’d be a good thing, right? Well, yes, but it was 10,000 books, so that’s a bulk sale. I say, okay. How many books did I sell? They go, you sold 70,000, which is about on par with what Elton John did for his biography, which was, you know, I’ll take. I go, what was number two? They go, 30,000. So I go, okay, I’m not so great at math, but if you take out the 10,000 you’re claiming are bulk sales, even though they were marked up and sold, you’d think marking it up would make it harder not easier to sell, right, but math and facts don’t work with the left. It’s like leftist Kryptonite, so I said, take them out. Where am I at? They’re like, you’re at 60,000, so I said, how much more is 60,000 than number two at 30,000? They go, two times. I go, don’t I still win? I mean, this is what we’re up against. This is the insanity. I mean, so much of why I wrote a book, and I got to experience something pretty incredible over the last few years. I got to be the tip of the spear of one of the greatest political upsets in history, at a time where we probably needed it more than ever.
I think Conservatives, the Republican Party, their specialty over the last few decades have been snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. No, I mean that. Listen, you know, I get some of that mentality, and I understand sort of the religious connotation and the ties of turning the other cheek, but it’s failed us for 50 years, while we have ceded ground to a party that plays by a different set of rules, and I said, I don’t care what game we’ve been playing. If everyone is playing t-ball, that’s fine. If everyone wants to play hardball, even better, but we can’t be playing t-ball while they’re playing hardball, so I got to experience American political history. Frankly, now really American history at the forefront of that greatest upset, and then I also got to be part of some of the retribution.
Some of the attacks afterwards, and so when you go from that sort of, the good to the most vicious aspects of our political system, for me, that was being the number two target of the Mueller hoax. I call it a hoax because it was pretty clear within about 30 seconds of Robert Mueller getting on the stand. I’m literally live tweeting. I go, will one congressman please ask Mr. Mueller, have you read the report that bears your name? Uh, well, um, no. That’s not in my ****. I go, ask him about Fusion GPS. No, I don’t know. I don’t know who that is, never heard of him. I go, literally, interns in Washington DC know who Fusion GPS is. I said if you’ve opened a newspaper in the last 5 years, you know who they are, and he had no idea. I go, you mean to tell me you’ve spent 2 ½ years and $40 million, and you have no idea how this whole thing started, and for the American people who hadn’t quite got what had been going for that last 2 ½ years, that drove home the point. This was a person that was put in there, not because he was a great prosecutor looking to get to the bottom of this. This person was put in there because he was perfect pawn. No more. He was a perfect pawn because he had a track record that was beyond reproach, right? He was the former head of the FBI. I don’t know that means anything anymore after what we’ve seen. No, after what we’ve seen? You know, I still like the door kickers, but the guys at the top, the lawyer bureaucrats, not so much. He was a former decorated Marine, and again, this is someone who Donald Trump couldn’t attack, and that’s why he was there, so when he managed to miraculously form an unbiased team of 19 Hillary Clinton donors. I’m like, this doesn’t seem like it’s exactly some sort of egalitarian process. Three-quarters of them, they were at Hilary’s failed celebration that never happened. The glass ceiling that she didn’t quite break, and the American people got to see exactly what this was all about. A set up because someone had the guts to take on that establishment. Someone had the guts to take on these people, who know better even though they’ve not been elected, and that’s what we’re seeing today.
We’re seeing a continuation of the hoax that failed miserably, and this is just version 2.0. You can see, it’s amazing. I seem to be part of every outrage cycle. Now, I’ve been on stage for a few minutes now, so that may have changed because the outrage cycle, oh come on. They could have gone to three or four things since I’ve started speaking, but the outrage cycle of last week was me. I outed the whistleblower, apparently. No, I did. Even I was shocked at that. I go, how did I out him? Well, you tweeted about him. I go, let’s go further into this. I tweeted about you. You mean, I retweeted an article that had his name in the title of the article that’s all over the internet. His name was on Drudge Report 4 days prior. He was in Real Clear Politics the day before that, but I outed him, and I realized, they’re not upset that I apparently outed him because only a moron would think that retweeting an article, with someone’s name in the title of the article, is outing him, like I formed a group of spies to spy on this CIA guy to out him, and I realized it’s the same thing. It’s Mueller 2.0. They weren’t upset that I outed him. They were upset that now that the name was out there, people on our side could look into it. They could look into it and see that he was Joe Bidding’s guest at a state dinner. They could see that he is good buddies with John Brennan. He’s the side that can lie to Congress, and there’s no consequence. Not the other side, right? He’s the guy crying like a petulant child outside of the Oval Office the day after my father won, with Susan Rice, and you realize ah, that’s why they’re upset, because he’s no longer this innocent and humble public servant, trying to do good for his country. He is another leftist bureaucrat doing what they’ve been doing for 3 damn years, and everyone now sees it. So, again for me, I got to experience the best and the worst. I still continue to be a part of it, but I got to go around the country. I got to see the American people then and because unlike Hunter Biden, we were actually international businesspeople prior to politics. Right? This is one of the great false equivalencies I talk a little bit about in the book, and they, well you’re the son of a rich guy too. I go, true. You’ve been able to parley and take advantage of your father’s last name throughout your career. I go, true. They go, well then what’s the difference between you and Hunter Biden. I go, I didn’t do it off of my father’s taxpayer funded office. We were international businesspeople for 20 years. We stopped doing new international business the day my father won. We did a whole press conference on it. Hunter Biden magically became an international businessperson when he could do it, so I always do the false equivalency of the media. One of the big topics of the book is really sort of outstanding because they never talk about that part. They just say, well you guys are the same. I say, let’s point out these differences, and we go into them, and I do, and so even when I point them out, it’s amazing how that still never makes it into the story the next day.
So, I spend so much time talking about the media bias because I’ve seen it. I’ve seen it firsthand. I mean, David, for one of the things, obviously, that is near and dear to your heart, the most flagrant example of which I saw last week when the Washington Post where I read about democracy dying in darkness and all sorts of things, but they were able to take the killing of Al Baghdadi, the founder and leader of ISIS, a man that has murdered, raped, pillaged, doused people in gasoline, and lit them on fire while in cages, and turn him into an austere religious scholar. When my father asks, is the mainstream media the enemy of the people. When you see a headline like that, do you not wonder for yourselves? Does it not make you think if they can turn that person into an austere religious scholar, what can’t they say about anything? I mean, imagine that that is the filter by which we are seeing our news. You take truth, you run it through that level of hatred, and that’s what’s getting to the American people, and that’s what’s truly scary, so when I got to go around the country, I would make this speech. I would talk to regular people. I’d do that.
I’m probably much more comfortable, frankly, myself in sort of heartland America than I am on the rubber chicken charity dinner circuit in New York, which was never really my thing, and so I’d be telling these stories along the way to people, and they said eventually, Don, you have to put this down in a book. You have to write that down, and for years it was, Don, you should write a book about business. I go, I think my father has that one covered. Probably not going to work so well, but when I was able to do that, I took that down because so much of my life, amazingly, is relevant to what’s going on in this country right now, and again, I’m an unlikely conservative in the sense that I’m the son of a billionaire from New York City. Went to an Ivy League, and that doesn’t exactly crank out a lot of conservatives, but experiences of my life have sort of molded who I am, and it didn’t just start when my father entered politics.
One of the big pushes we see these days is an extreme push towards socialism and communist principles of the left. This is no longer a fringe element of the party. These are mainstream candidates. Many of them leading, pushing these elements, and I talk about that extensively in the book because I have a mother that escaped from communist Czechoslovakia. She left. The boats usually only go one way, in that, but I also have grandparents that grew up in that system, and I had the blessing of having them have the common sense to say and see how lucky we are over here in this country with our freedoms, and my grandfather used to have that conversation with my father at a young age, and your child has to see the other side, and so I spoke Czech fluently by the time I was about 3, and starting from about 5 or 6, he would take me over there every summer. For a month to 6 weeks, I had friends, and I’ve seen those breadlines. Not so glamourous. I can assure you, there’s frankly nothing less glamourous than an empty supermarket and waiting for food. I remember my earliest memory, and it’s not because it was a good one. It was because it was the first time I’d actually really experienced fear, was going over there for the first, and it was early 80s. I looked pretty cool. I was wearing a jean jacket with stars on it. I’m going through customs, and I got pulled out of line by a guy, like a soldier in a drab communist era type of uniform with an AK over his shoulder, and he’s questioning me. Was I there, essentially trying to preach capitalism in America? I said, I’m 5 years old, and I’m not like one of these woke Twitter 5 year olds that you read about today. My 3 year old asked me about nuclear proliferation on the Korean peninsula. I’m like, I’m calling BS on that one. He didn’t do it, but you know, good for you to try to drag a child into it to prove your point, but that was one of my earliest memories. I got to see what that system does to good people. Intelligent people and how it zaps them of any motivation to do anything above and beyond the bare minimum.
I got to question, when I looked at my parents wedding picture as a child, and say, well that’s great. You know, there’s my mom. There’s my grandfather. Where’s my grandmother? Why is she not there? Well, they wouldn’t let her out of the country because if they both left, they would defect, so they kept control by keeping my grandmother away from going to her daughter’s wedding. What kind of system doesn’t let you leave because they know you ain’t coming back? So, when I see these things being and becoming mainstream in American politics, it’s pretty scary, and my 93‑year-old grandmother, she’s still alive today. She spends a few months with us here every year. She’s got to watch her daughter live the American dream, and when I get that call from her every few weeks because she’s watching CNN over there, because there’s no conservative outlet. There is no alternate viewpoint, in tears. You don’t understand. You can’t let those systems come there, and don’t kid yourselves. This isn’t a typical 93‑year-old woman. This is someone who spent her early adult years hiding in the basement of her farmhouse from the Nazis during World War II. She then lived under communist occupation for 40 years. She’s seen what these things do. She gets it, and when she calls me every few weeks in tears for fear of the future and wellbeing of her grandchildren, that’s me, my brother, my sister. Her great grandchildren, our children. It sort of tells me all I need to know, and why we have to engage and be in this fight together. It’s literally my motivation. These things don’t work. They’ve failed over and over and over, and when she’s calling me in tears, it’s sort of my motivation to get out there to make sure that we don’t let this stuff happen because I always find it so interesting, and anyone who’s watched the democrat debates over the last few months.
They can find anyone that will say something incredibly stupid. It’s like their superpower. Right? I mean, there is nothing that they will not say, no matter how idiotic and yet I always wonder why is it they’re not able to find someone who’s actually lived under those great systems that they’re espousing who will vouch for them. Right? I mean, they’ll say anything. They’ll tell you that the $93 trillion green new deal will magically pay for itself like freaking Santa Clause. Right? I mean, sure. It’s only 15 times US Government revenue to stop farting cows and air travel. What could go wrong? It’ll pay for itself. It’s going to take care of people who are not willing to work. Not those, just who are not able to work. They can’t even make the distinction, and I say, you can do that, but you can’t find one person from former communist Czechoslovakia, the rest of the eastern bloc, former Soviet Union, China, Venezuela, Cuba, a little closer to home. Why is there no one from there on the Democrat platform saying, no, no, no, let’s bring that crap here? It’s awesome. Because it doesn’t exist, and that’s why you needed Donald Trump. You needed someone as the conservative who doesn’t care about being loved or liked. I don’t want the nicest guy in the world running our country because guess what guys. He’s not going to be able to make the tough decisions. I don’t want the guys, the sort of Mitt Romney’s of the world, who want to be loved by the media and will say and do anything to achieve that goal despite those being the same people that destroyed him when he ran, but he didn’t have the guts to push back. That’s the difference. Right?
And so in these crazy times, Donald Trump is the guy that you need. You need a fighter. He has shown conservatives that you can push back. He has shown conservatives, you don’t just have to lose because the other side would love you to, and as I opened up, that hasn’t been a conservative norm. We’ve turned the other cheek, and in doing so, we’ve ceded ground for decades. We’ve lost pop culture. We’ve lost academia. We’ve lost so many things where our children are simply being indoctrinated into this school of though of idiocy where you can’t back it up, and so again, I got to put all these things down in the book. One of the ones I got killed about a few weeks ago was talking on and taking on the transgender issue, and by the way, I’m from New York. I’m a pretty live and let live kind of guy, despite how I’m portrayed in the media, and I just said, where do the goal posts of the left stop moving? Because you can be very live and let live. You can be woke today. By tomorrow, you’re alt-right, and even some of the great leaders of some of these causes have just been simply destroyed because the left will eat their own if you don’t buy into 100 percent of whatever it is they’re pitching. The example in the book that I used, I just said hey as the father of some girls, I have an issue with some of the transwomen. Right? They were men last week. Now they’re women, and they’re competing against other women in sports, and you’ve seen every weightlifting record being broken. You saw last week the world record in bicycle racing. You saw the MMA fighter that was a male fighter, transitioned to female. Jumped in the ring. Fractured the skull and orbital bone of a female fighter. I just said, where are the feminists? Where are the people who fought for Title IX? Who fought for equality?
Because this doesn’t seem like there’s all that much equality out there, and Martina Navratilova came out. Not because of me, but she came out as one of the great sort of female athletes of modern time. This was someone who was an out lesbian for over 40 years. An activist for that cause for, let’s call it 35 years before it was cool. Someone who’s dedicated her life to it, and she basically said the same thing as me. We just, hey as a female athlete, I think this is a little bit ridiculous. And within minutes she was destroyed. 40 years of activism for her cause forgotten. So much so, she had to walk it back. She lost gigs. She got thrown off boards for simply having an opinion that diverged slightly from what today’s talking points are. She was destroyed so badly, 3 weeks later despite having we sort of grew up knowing her and everything like that, she had to come out hitting Trump because that’s the penance you have to pay. Right? To get back into Woke Culture. All of a sudden, I’ve been destroyed, well now Trump, Trump’s really bad. Trump’s terrible, but that shows you what we’re up against.
David, you know it better than anyone as a reformed radical yourself. There is never enough for the other side. They will continue to change the goalposts as we’ve seen in the impeachment inquiry. Well, we’re not making gains with this, so we’ll change the supposed crime and alter it daily to match what a focus group has said so that we can win in 2020 because everyone knows nothing actually happened, but it’s about doing as much damage as they can because they know they can’t win in the voting booth, but it is great to see, David, what you are doing here. That you have people who are willing to stand up. That are willing to fight back. Understanding that there are consequences. There are consequences to being conservative. There are consequences to being a vocal conservative, and there are much more consequences to being a vocal Trump supporting conservative, but I – thank you. But I can assure you, I’ve been around the country. I’ve been with those people who’ve been called every name in the book who are considered and hated by the media for simply wanting to live their American dream. For wanting to have their taxpayer dollars go towards their children. Maybe their grandchildren. And when I turn on the TV, and I see that hatred from the media.
Maybe the best example is, because it really does drive home the point. In Florida here, up in Orlando earlier in the summer, it was around June. We launched the 2020 campaign. 47,000 people showed up to a political rally to an arena that held 25,000. Many knew, half, that they wouldn’t even get in, and they waited outside in rain and thunderstorms for 2 days to get a glimpse of the president. To listen perhaps to his message in the studio or outside on loudspeakers. It was incredible. I got to introduce the vice president, who introduced the president. I mean, this was right after Mueller gave his garbled speech where he was saying give me a break. It was an incredible thing to see. Just the amount of warmth and love and everything was there. We left the arena, and I put on the TV to see how it was going to be covered, and I’m watching the mainstream media, and I’ll watch the other side as well, and I think I turned on, I think it was MSNBC. I turned it on, did you see those people? Ugh. They were there in their flip flops. That must be their formal attire. Hahahaha. And honestly, it pissed me off. Again, those are the same people who for years didn’t understand what happened in 2016 because the three people that they deal with on a daily basis in the newsroom of the New York Times, did not know a single person who would vote for Trump, and they didn’t get it. They’d seen that they’d put these people in the corner. They boxed them out. They’d made them irrelevant. They’d made them bad people, and when you’re watching them say that and have that level of disdain for good hardworking people. I say, this is why you have Trump, and this is why we will win again. Because they have not yet learned from their lessons.
But again with that, I don’t mean to speak in a somber fashion, but it is true, and this is the fight that we are in. When you look at the results, it gives me actually great hope. Okay? When you have a president that can deliver all time low unemployment numbers for African Americans, for Hispanics, for women for veterans. All time high start ups in businesses for the same people. When you see a president who will enact prison reform, not because it’s something that his party focused on. It wasn’t exactly a Republican talking point, but because it was the right thing to do. It gives me great hope, and I hope that the real hardworking people of this country see what’s going on. Recognize the tactics of the other side because they’ve been overplayed so often. That despite 96, as of last week, 96 percent negative media coverage, they get that this is a president who is fighting for them. A president who didn’t need this job. A president whose turn it was not, but for the American people, it was his turn because they needed someone who could actually be a leader and not just a puppet, so I do hope you get a chance to read the book. I think you’ll get some interesting insight into the family. Into what my father’s been able to do into sort of how his mindset was shaped. You get to hear about, at length, think of it as my Twitter feed in longform. Okay? We drop a lot of bombs, but I do it in much more than 140 characters or less, so we have some fun, but I think you guys will truly enjoy it. Thank you so much for having me here today. It’s been an honor. David, thank you for the work that you have been doing, calling out this garbage for decades. It is time, and it’s an honor to be in the fight with all of you. Thank you very much, guys.
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