During a speech to the Susan B. Anthony List's 11th Annual Campaign for Life Gala on Tuesday night, President Donald Trump warned the audience of a possible Democratic takeover of Congress in this November's midterm elections. Trump said that a Democratic sweep of Congress would mean an undoing of "historic gains" he claims to have achieved.
"But if Democrats gain power they will try to reverse these incredible gains," the president said. "These are historic gains. They will try and reverse many of them."
Trump then broke from his script and suggested that voting in 2018 may not be as important as when people voted for him in the 2016 presidential election.
Trump: I'm "not really sure" it's as important to vote in 2018 midterms as it was in 2016 https://t.co/AbKotNAIaz https://t.co/u514yUGjRl— The Hill (@The Hill) 1527053468.0
"So your vote in 2018 is every bit as important as your vote in 2016...although I'm not sure I really believe that," Trump admitted. "I don't know who the hell wrote that line, I'm not sure...but it's still important, remember."
Trump's remarks contradict the words of emcee Kathy Ireland, who introduced Trump along with a message about the importance of the midterm elections.
Trump takes stage at anti-abortion gala to enthusiastic applause — and with “I’m Proud to be An American” playing i… https://t.co/vV1rDpKgHt— Dan Diamond (@Dan Diamond) 1527033750.0
@ddiamond Inconceivable that an election in which he isn’t a candidate is of great import.— 🐬🌎🌍🌏 (@🐬🌎🌍🌏) 1527035386.0
@TrumpsTaxes @ladyhawkerfinds Who will protect our elections from the Russian hacking, meddling, propaganda and dis… https://t.co/VnMRTlnz8U— KE (@KE) 1526847279.0
Trump also praised Kellyanne Conway, one of his closest White House advisers who is set to receive the Susan B. Anthony List's 11th Annual Campaign for Life Gala Distinguished Leader award. “She'll do the shows that nobody else dares go near,” the president said of Conway. “Great going, Kellyanne. What a help.”
5:15 pm: Trump administration formally announces changes to Title X, seeking to curb abortion.… https://t.co/ZkNLXjh4Ui— Dan Diamond (@Dan Diamond) 1527024515.0
Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser, breaking with her group's 2016 call to nominate anyone but Trump, said, “I’m totally eating my words" about the president. "I care far less about the veneer and the polish than I do about the concrete actions that have concrete consequences,” she said. The group has referred to Trump as the most "pro-life president" ever.
@ddiamond How many times a week do you just step back and say, “Donald freaking Trump is president”?— Daniel Aguilar (@Daniel Aguilar) 1527035062.0
@ddiamond You would think that the GOP would have learned by now that Donald literally is incapable of ever pretend… https://t.co/RkTaRdxjjY— Jonathan (@Jonathan) 1527035218.0
@ddiamond That's because he knows they have rigged the voting system, demand paper ballots people!— Cyndee 🕊 (@Cyndee 🕊) 1527036709.0
This all comes at a critical time for our country, as intelligence officials brace for another round of Russian interference into an American election.
Senior Trump administration officials warned Congress on Tuesday of ongoing efforts by #Russia to interfere in the… https://t.co/TObgO7cVru— Julia Davis (@Julia Davis) 1527003893.0
Yesterday, several Trump administration officials warned Congress of "ongoing efforts by Russia to interfere in the 2018 midterm congressional elections as the federal government prepares to hand out $380 million in election security funding to states."
The leaders of the FBI, Department of Homeland Security, and the Director of National Intelligence told 40-50 House members that the looming threat of Russian interference into the 2018 midterms is still very much alive.
"We see them continuing to conduct foreign influence campaigns,” Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said. "We need to be prepared."
Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX), who chairs the House Homeland Security Committee, echoed these concerns, saying after the briefing: "not only Russia but possibly other foreign adversaries are now going to start looking at how they can meddle in the midterm elections and we need to be prepared. We were caught off guard last time.”
On May 8, the Senate Intelligence Committee issued a report outlining exactly how the Russians were able to interfere with the 2016 presidential election.
Cyber actors affiliated with the Russian Government conducted an unprecedented, coordinated cyber campaign against state election infrastructure. [Russian actors] scanned databases for vulnerabilities, attempted intrusions, and in a small number of cases successfully penetrated a voter registration database.
The report added that "these cyber actors were in a position to, at a minimum, alter or delete voter registration data.”
BREAKING: Pompeo says US won't tolerate Russian interference in 2018 US elections, will counter `continued' efforts to do so.— The Associated Press (@The Associated Press) 1527082456.0
Democrats and members of the intelligence community are urging election officials to heed these warnings and enact measures to safeguard voting systems across the country. “It is clear that our government must do more and whatever possible to secure our elections from foreign interference. The integrity of our democracy is at stake,” said Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS), who serves on the Homeland Security Committee.
On Wednesday moring, Trump once again called the Russia investigation a "witch hunt."
WITCH HUNT!— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump) 1527082446.0