President Trump recently made his rounds through the state of California where he visited prototypes of the southern border wall and gave a speech at the Marine Corps Air Station in Miramar, a neighborhood in San Diego, California.
During the speech, Trump promised pay raises, new equipment, and teased the opening of another military branch, a “Space Force.” The comment drew a huge applause from those in attendance.
Per Fox 5:
The president pledged to “honor our duty to you,” undertaking what he described as the largest military buildup since the presidency of Ronald Reagan and a policy of “peace through strength” that includes an influx of billions into the defense budget to pay for new equipment that Trump signed into law last month.
“The two-year budget agreement I just reached with Congress will provide $700 billion in defense funding this year, the largest ever, larger by far than any country has ever spent,” Trump said. “Next year we will raise that number to $716 billion. That’s a lot of money.”
The funding is set to pay for training, missile defense and upgrades to the nuclear weapons arsenal. It represents a more than 15 percent increase from last year’s military budget.
“We’re also investing in our greatest weapon of all, our most powerful weapon, our most beautiful weapon, our most brilliant weapon: you,” Trump said, according to Fox 5. “In 2019 we want to give you the largest pay raise in over a decade. You deserve it.”
Per BizPac Review:
“In space, the United States is going to do Col. [John] Glenn proud,” President Trump asserted. “We are finally going to lead again. You see what’s happening, you see the rockets going up left and right. You haven’t seen that for a long time.”
The commander-in-chief claimed aerospace development wouldn’t have happened under the watch of his 2016 election opponent Hillary Clinton.
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“Very soon, we’re going to Mars. You wouldn’t have been going to Mars if my opponent won. That I can tell you. You wouldn’t even be thinking about it. ”
The comment elicited a burst of laughter and clapping from the audience.
Stars & Stripes reports that while this is not the first time Trump has floated the idea, he is now giving it some more serious consideration:
Saying his national security strategy “recognizes that space is a war-fighting domain, just like the land, air and sea,” Trump said at a San Diego Marine Corps base that he’s considering “a space force” that would be the equivalent of the Air Force, Army and Navy.
Trump said at first he wasn’t serious when he floated the concept, but “then I said what a great idea, maybe we’ll have to do that.”
This is more about boosting reconnaissance and cyber security than fighting in orbit, said Sean O’Keefe, who was both NASA administrator and Navy secretary under President George W. Bush.
Fox 5 reports Trump said, “Our administration is stacked with Marines because Marines are the type of people we want on our side. Marines never give up, never give in, never retreat and never, ever surrender.”