A defiant President Trump on Wednesday told a graduating class at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy that no politician has been treated more unfairly by the media and advised them “to put your head down and fight, fight, fight” when facing such adversity.
“You can’t let your critics and the naysayers get in the way of your dreams,” Trump said during his commencement address in New London, Conn. “Adversity makes you stronger. Never stop doing what you know is right.”
The president made no explicit reference to controversies swirling around him, including reports that he asked FBI Director James Comey to halt an investigation of former national security adviser Michael Flynn and that he shared highly classified material with Russian officials during a White House visit.
But Trump seemed to be making clear references to the recent media coverage of those issues, which has overshadowed everything else going on in Washington.
“No politician in history, and I say this with great surety, has been treated worse or more unfairly,” Trump said.
Toward the end of a half-hour address, he advised the graduating class to “never stop doing what you know is right,” before ticking off what he characterized as accomplishments from the early stages of his presidency, including a reduction in illegal border crossings and a plan to deliver “the largest tax cut in history.”
“I didn’t get elected to serve the Washington media or special interests,” Trump said. “ I got elected to serve the forgotten men and women of our country.”
Earlier in his address, Trump offered some advice on leadership.
“You have to act, and you have to act properly and you have to learn how to act under great pressure,” the president said.