CINCINNATI, Ohio — President-elect Donald Trump celebrated his victory and thanked supporters with a massive rally Thursday night in Cincinnati that was reminiscent of his high-energy campaign event.
Trump said he would deliver on his promises, from lowering taxes to preserving American jobs to curbing illegal immigration. He also said he would repeal and replace Obamacare, despite saying after his election that he would keep some components.
Trump said he wasn’t afraid to set supporters’ expectations too high.
“This campaign proved that the old rules no longer apply, that anything we want for our country is now possible,” the president-elect told thousands at U.S. Bank Arena, where Vice President-elect Mike Pence also spoke. “Now is not the time to downsize our dreams, but to set our sights higher than ever before for our country.”
The rally was billed by Trump’s team as part of his “USA Thank You Tour 2016.” No additional stops have been officially announced.
Trump also confirmed reports that he would appoint retired Marine Gen. James Mattis as his defense secretary, joking that the news should stay in the room because he wasn’t supposed to make the announcement until Monday. He called Mattis “one of our great, great generals” and used the retired general’s nickname, “Mad Dog.”
The crowd at points chanted “lock her up,” a reference to Hillary Clinton, but Trump did not acknowledge it. He has said he would not pursue her prosecution.
He rehashed winning key states on election night, repeatedly criticizing news outlets for their coverage of him and leading the thousands of his supporters to boo reporters at the venue. He joked too that he and his backers “did have a lot of fun fighting Hillary, didn’t we?”
At the start of his speech, he promised to unite the country, saying, “We condemn bigotry and prejudice in all of its forms.”
In the crowd several fans, including some wearing caps that read “USA” on the front and “45” on the side, expressed their faith in Trump.
Craig Harrison, 45, of Cincinnati, a construction worker wearing a Trump flag as a cape, touted the president-elect as a “not a politician” and someone “who cares about everyday Americans.”