Addressing an audience of dignitaries and sailors on the $12.9-billion nuclear-powered carrier at the Naval Air Station in Norfolk, Virginia, Mr. Trump said the new warship will deliver an unmistakable message to America's allies and enemies. "We must end the defense sequester once and for all".
A Friday Washington Post story reported President Trump has been exploring the option of exercising his broad constitutional pardon power on behalf of himself or members of his campaign team or family.
Note that the ceremony was broadcast on the White house page in Facebook.
The president said the warship serves as a "deterrent that keeps us from having to fight" but added, if conflict does arise, "it will always end the same way".
On Saturday, the president stuck mostly to script in a patriotic speech of about 16 minutes, extolling the new vessel as the centerpiece of his effort to rebuild the nation's naval fleet.
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The U.S. Navy's new aircraft carrier is billed as "the most advanced in the world" and boasts the ability to carry more aircraft and weapons than any ship before.
"Today, this ship officially begins its role in the noble military history of our great nation", Trump told the roughly 5,000 people present. After military service, Mr Ford was elected to the House of Representatives, serving MI until he was tapped by then-president Richard Nixon to become vice president. Saluting the workers who built the vessel and the personnel who'll man it, Trump said "your skill and your grit build the instruments of war that preserve peace". The map of the world stands for the ship's global presence, and the blue-and-gold color scheme is for the president's college years at the University of MI and Yale. "We will win ... we will never lose".
"When it comes to battle, we don't want a fair fight".
US allies will rest easy, Trump said, but America's enemies will "shake with fear" when they see the Ford cutting across the horizon. The carrier is also emblematic of some of the Pentagon's procurement difficulties. Sirens and bells sounded, horns blared and the US flag was hoisted high above the deck.
TheGerald R. Ford (CVN 78)-class will eventually be a "phased replacement" for the Nimitz-class carriers with as many as 10 vessels-or potentially more-eventually being built. The Navy has attributed the delays and budget overruns to the ship's state-of-the-art systems and technology, including electromagnetic launch systems for jets and drones that will replace steam catapults.