President Trump’s Visit to North Dakota: Protesters, Supporters and a lot of North Dakota Love

Every high-ranking North Dakota politician was in attendance including our Democratic U.S. Senator

MANDAN, ND — In his first visit to North Dakota as president, Donald Trump gave his speech on tax reform in front of a crowd of 700 invited guests in Mandan.

The backdrop was the Andeavor Corporation Oil Refinery, formerly Tesoro.

Every high-ranking North Dakota politician was in attendance including our Democratic U.S. Senator.

An audience of North Dakotans from across the state cheered as our nation’s 45th president walked on stage.

“North Dakota is an inspiring example of the amazing things that are possible when we unleash the genius of American innovators,” President Trump said.

The main topic was his tax reform plan which he claimed will put Americans first and cut taxes for the middle class.

He said it will restore the competitive edge by making more jobs and raising wages.

Mr. Trump emphasized a bi-partisan tax reform even though way more Republicans support his proposal than Democrats.

He criticized the tax codes complexity and slammed businesses which help file tax returns.

“Under our plan, 95 percent of Americans will to fill their taxes and file their tax returns on a single page, without having to keep receipts,” President Trump said. “We’re going to be switching from a world-wide tax system that encourages companies to keep their funds off shore to a territorial system that encourages companies to bring their profits back home to America where that money belongs.”

Mr. Trump said small businesses and farmers in North Dakota will benefit by his plan to eliminate the death tax.

“Here with us today is Julie Elingson, a fourth generation cattle rancher and a mother of five, where is Julie?” President Trump asked as he scanned the crowd. “Julie worries about the death tax shutting down her family business and keeping her from passing it on to her children.”

Mr. Trump invited several state politicians to the podium including Democratic U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp, who reportedly flew in with him on Air Force One.

“Thank you Senator, Senator Heitkamp,” President Trump. “Everyone’s saying, what’s she doing up here? But I’ll tell you what. Good woman, and I think we’ll have your support, I hope we’ll have your support.”

One of his children also addressed the crowd.

“We love this state, so it’s always a pleasure to be back here,” Ivanka Trump, who is a special adviser to her father said. “You treated us very, very well in November.”

The presidential event was well received by the more than 700 invited guests.

“I love him,” said Brenda Zink of Carrington. “He’s my president.”

“He connects with the working man, which is really nice to hear,” said Mike Appert of Hazelton. “I’m glad he’s out here trying to help us. I’m happy about trying to get rid of the death tax, it really makes a big difference to the farmers in this state.”

The tax plans were well received by Governor Doug Burgum, a former Microsoft executive.

“It’s going to allow America to be more competitive versus all the other countries in the world and he understands that and that’s very refreshing,” Gov. Burgum said.

In a 2016 interview, the Governor called both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump flawed candidates.

When asked if he still thinks Mr. Trump is flawed, he may have changed his tune.

“The key strength of a Republican president is where they stand on economics,” Gov. Burgum said. “When you have the right economic policies and we can get our economy growing from two percent to three or even four percent, then that tide raises everybody.”

Just outside the venue, police set up a protest space dividing supporters and protesters on either side of a road.

“He’s done a lot to protect our freedom behind the scenes,” said Marty Berad of Stewarsdale. “Just the amount of the work he’s done to protect the business end of this country and its citizens.”

The designated protester space was empty, while supporters stood on the other side and sold Trump memorabilia.

“Not to believe everything that the media tells them, ’cause usually it’s a bunch of BS,” Berad said.

Instead, protesters set up on Bismarck Expressway Bridge, while people on social media reportedly threatened to run them over.

Police quickly made these protesters leave the bridge.

One of them stood outside the refinery gate.

“I like to base it upon the conservative values of Theodore Roosevelt fans,” said Robert Haukenberry of Dickinson, “which we do have a lot of them in the state of North Dakota. If we truly want to speed up the economy, we want to tax the wealthy.”

This man and a handful of others dispersed throughout the area in protest of the president’s ideals.

“If your message is to drain the swamp, then perhaps you should drain the swamp by not hiring swamp things,” Haudenberry said.

Even in a deep red state, many are still opposed to the president, upset over steep promises which they say he can’t keep.

“We will bring back the American dream,” President Trump said.

The president congratulated North Dakota on having the lowest unemployment rate in the country.

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