Trump brags about redesigning Navy ships to make them 'beautiful' at Wisconsin despite trailing Biden in state
He also spoke about a new Navy contract for the shipyard in Wisconsin which he said was worth $5.5 billion
President Donald Trump on Thursday, June 25, boasted in Wisconsin about redesigning Navy ships to make them look more "beautiful" and that his administration was rebuilding the American military from an "old" and "very tired" fighting force into one that will be seen as the "ultimate symbol of American power and American prestige". The president’s words came at a time when the US is battling the coronavirus pandemic and witnessing ugly protests against racial injustice. Moreover, Trump himself is trailing his likely Democratic opponent Joe Biden in a number of battleground states including Wisconsin, as polls suggested.
While the latest survey by The New York Times/Siena College showed the incumbent trailing Biden by 11 points in Washington, a new Marquette Law School Poll found him lagging behind the Democrat by eight points. Trump won Wisconsin by less than a percentage point in 2016, setting up the first GOP victory in the state since 1984.
Embattled Trump loves a 'yacht with missiles'
The figures, however, didn’t stop Trump from bragging about himself. Addressing a few hundred people with Cooperstown, a Littoral combat ship, anchored behind him at Fincantieri Marinette Marine, Trump said about the ship designs: "They look terrible. I changed designs. I looked at it. I said that's a terrible looking ship. Let's make it beautiful. It'll cost you the same and maybe less. You know sometimes you can make it look great for less money.”
"They gave me a beautiful model. That's absolutely — it's like a yacht with missiles on it. It's like beautiful, but you know it's true you can build beautifully and it costs you sometimes less money," the president added. "Not long ago, the future of this historic shipyard was looking… can I use the word bleak?" he said. "Through your sweat, skill and devotion, the workers of the shipyard will forge the future of the United States Navy."
The Republican leader was in the Badger State to promote his economic record, one area where his presidency continues to get good marks even though the ongoing pandemic has hurt the country’s economic performance. He spoke about a new Navy contract for the shipyard which he said was worth $5.5 billion. The company received a contract to build 10 Navy frigates, a deal that could create several employment opportunities, and it is the first major shipbuilding program in the US in more than a decade.
"It’s gonna be built right here in the American heartland and it's going to be built by you. And it’s going to go on for a long time because it's up to 20 ships and might be extended," the president added. Trump went around the Fincantieri shipyard and saw a model of an under-construction Navy ship. Later, the president said the new ships will deliver a "7,500-ton message to the world that American might is second to none".
The president also appeared for a town hall meeting with Fox News’s Sean Hannity in Green Bay during the second visit to Wisconsin where he took on Biden. Though it was not an official campaign visit, Trump tried to make full use of it to reach out to the voters amid adverse conditions. The president has returned to his public-relations trail recently with a campaign in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and a students’ event in Phoenix, Arizona.