Anticipation about Donald Trump’s United Nations’ speech reached its high point this week, and he did not disappoint those who were worried about what he might say. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley kicked off the event with her Trump introduction speech. Then, the president took the microphone, and it all went to hell.
The president began with a statement contrary to opinions he had expressed during his 2016 presidential campaign. He commented that he saw the international organization’s “great potential.” Then according to ABC News, he turned toward his favorite subject, himself:
‘Thank you very much. Thank you. I actually saw great potential right across the street to be honest with you. And it was only for the reason that the United Nations was that that turned out to be such a successful project. So, I want to thank you, Ambassador Haley for your introduction and your steadfast advocacy for American interests on the world stage.’
During his first speech before the United Nations General Assembly, he urged the U.N. to reform itself. He especially appreciated the secretary general’s efforts on reformation “so that it better serves the people we all represent.” Then, he added that the organization “has not reached its full potential because of bureaucracy and mismanagement.”
The president believes that the U.N. spends way to much money and needs to cut back on staff positions, according to ABC News:
‘We are not seeing results in line with this investment.’
While he campaigned, 45 was highly critical of the U.N., referring to its “utter weakness and incompetence,” according to ABC News. More recently, he has lightened his criticism of the organization.
Before the president entered the political fray in 2005, he testified before a Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs subcommittee that was considering the U.N. building renovations. He was trying to drum up some construction business and said the U.N. was one reason he built Trump World Tower on its current location. Then U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan disapproved of the huge project. According to ABC News Trump said:
‘I’m a big fan of the United Nations and all it stands for…If the United Nations weren’t there, perhaps I wouldn’t have built it in that location. So it means quite a bit to me.’
ABC News wrote that Trump has a pet peeve with the U.N. building. He hates the marble tiles behind its speaker podium:
‘The cheap 12 inch sq. marble tiles behind speaker at U.N. always bothered me. I will replace with beautiful large marble slabs if they ask me.’
Trump will meet individually with the leaders of France and Israel later in the day. Then, he will host a Latin American leader dinner in the evening.
Check out this video of Donald Trump speaking before the United Nations via ABC News:
Pres. Trump on luxury residential property by UN: United Nations being there was reason “that turned out to be such a successful project.” pic.twitter.com/kid9STah3W
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) September 18, 2017
Featured Image via Getty Images/Drew Angerer.