President Donald Trump proclaimed the importance of faith and unity in a speech Friday.
“America is a nation of believers … sustained by the power of prayer,” Trump said at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C.
He said the response of Americans to the recent hurricanes and Las Vegas shooting showed the strength of the United States “is found in the hearts and souls” of the nation’s citizens.
“When America is unified, no force on Earth can break us apart,” he said.
Trump emphasized the importance of family, work, religious liberty, “the rule of law,” and law enforcement.
“We salute every American who wears the uniform,” Trump said to a standing ovation. “We respect our great American flag.”
Trump said he passed an executive order to limit the enforcement of the Johnson Amendment to stop it from interfering with First Amendment rights. He said he won’t let the government censor pastors or churches.
The Johnson Amendment was added to the tax code in 1954, and part of the amendment stops churches from endorsing or opposing political candidates. It was introduced by former President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1954 when he was just a senator of Texas.
Trump also targeted organizations refusing to say “Merry Christmas.”
“They don’t use the word ‘Christmas’ because it’s not politically correct,” he said. “You go to department stores, and they’ll say, ‘Happy New Year.’ Or they’ll say other things …Well, guess what? We’re saying ‘Merry Christmas’ again.”
He also mentioned that he wants Congress to pass “massive tax cuts” and eliminate the marriage penalty. He briefly mentioned health care, saying that he will be taking a different route in executive orders to get rid of Obamacare because Congress failed to repeal it.
Trump said the keys to creating great communities are the family and the church.
“In America, we don’t worship government,” he said. “We worship God.”
He also touched on ISIS and said he would deal with the threat of “radical Islamic terrorism.” He said the U.S. has made the lives of ISIS terrorists “difficult,” and ISIS is facing defeats.
Trump emphasized that parents do what they can to propel the future of their children and do their best to make sure their children’s futures involve God.
“We see it in the mothers and fathers who get up at the crack of dawn,” he said. “They work two jobs and sometimes three jobs. They sacrifice every day for the future of their children.”
Trump said he made the promise last year that he would protect religious liberty and that he would come back to speak at the Values Voter Summit. He claimed to be the first sitting president to speak at the event.