President-elect Trump names James Mattis as secretary of defense at first celebration rally

12/02/2016 12:30 PM

CINCINNATI — President-elect Donald Trump used his first “USA Thank You Tour” on Thursday night in Cincinnati to announce that retired Marine General James “Mad Dog” Mattis was his choice to be the next secretary of defense.

Mattis, who retired as chief of U.S. Central Command in 2013, has indicated that Washington lacks an overall strategy in the Middle East.

Trump plans to officially announce the appointment on Monday and joked with the crowd about not saying anything to anybody until next week.

To get the job, Mattis will need Congress to pass legislation to bypass a federal law which states that defense secretaries must not have been on active duty in the previous seven years, something that Congress did only once in 1950 when Gen. George Marshall was appointed to the job.

“He’s the best,” Trump said. “They say he’s the closest thing to Gen. George Patton that we have and it’s about time.”

Trump also used the appearance to condemn this week’s attack at Ohio State University and tying that incident to his tough stance on immigration.

“We will suspend immigration from regions where it cannot be safely processed,” Trump said. “We don’t need another San Bernardino, we don’t need another Orlando, we don’t need another World Trade Center. Your state has just experienced a violent atrocity at the great Ohio State University that further demonstrates the security threats that were stupidly created by our very, very stupid politicians.”

Trump stayed with his familiar theme to “make America great again,” which includes bringing more jobs back to the country, repealing Obamacare, cutting taxes and bringing the country together.

Earlier in the day, Trump had visited the Carrier Corporation in Indianapolis, where it was announced that the company would keep 1,069 of its 1,400 jobs from going to Mexico after Trump and Indiana Gov. and Vice President-elect Mike Pence offered the company $7 million in incentives to keep most of the jobs in Indiana.

Prior to Trump’s speech, Pence addressed the crowd saying that the only reason Carrier decided to stay in Indianapolis was Donald Trump.

“Make no mistake about it, Carrier chose to stay in Indiana because America chose to make Donald Trump the next president of the United States,” Pence said.

Trump also took the opportunity to once again blast those in the mainstream media who doubted that he could win.

“I watched a particular person (on Election Day) and we won Wisconsin, and we won Michigan, and we won Pennsylvania, and that person is doing the map, and that person was saying for months that there’s no way that Donald Trump can break the blue wall,” Trump said. “We didn’t break it, we shattered that sucker. That poor wall is busted up.”

Trump and Pence are scheduled to make an appearance in New Orleans as part of their victory tour on Saturday.

Don Weber

Don Weber is a Video Journalist for Spectrum News and covers politics and education on Pure Politics, Kentucky’s only nightly program dedicated to state politics. Don is a lifelong Kentuckian and a graduate of Northern Kentucky University. He spent many years covering sports in the Northern Kentucky area before shifting primarily to politics. You can watch Don’s work weeknights at 7:00 and 11:30 on Pure Politics, available exclusively on Spectrum News, HD Channels 403 and 715. If you have a story idea you can reach Don at donald.weber@charter.com.

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