Trump helps commission USS Gerald R. Ford, newest aircraft carrier

Trump helps commission USS Gerald R. Ford, newest aircraft carrier

Referring to President Teddy Roosevelt, acting Navy Secretary Sean Stackley told Mr. Trump, "One of your predecessors famously said 'Speak softly and carry a big stick.' We offer you, sir, a big stick". He didn't mention the issue on Saturday.

The White House says Trump is dining with chief of staff Reince Priebus (ryns PREE'-bus), adviser Stephen Miller and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin (mih-NOO'-shin) and his wife, Louise.

Trump, the commander in chief of the US military, will be on hand at Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia to preside over the commissioning ceremony.

The U.S. Navy on Saturday with the help of President Donald Trump will commission its most powerful warship yet: the USS Gerald Ford. "This has led to deferred maintenance, a lack of investment in new equipment and technology and a shortfall in military readiness". During his speech, Trump called on Congress to pass his $1 trillion budget outline that includes a $54 billion increase in defense spending next year.

The warship is the largest nuclear-powered aircraft carrier in the world, and was emblazoned for the event with a banner proclaiming "Made in the US".

Construction on the USS Ford started in 2009 and was to be completed by September 2015 at a cost of 10.5 billion dollars. The Navy blames the delays and budget overruns on the ship's state-of-the-art systems.

- The Advanced Arresting Gear system allows the ships to recover a broader range of aircraft.

Image: The Pre-Commissioning Unit Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) displays "up and over" flags in observance of Independence Day. Additional information on aircraft carriers is available online at

Mattis called the ship a "magnificent warship [that] joins the best Navy in the world".

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder and members of Congress from Virginia and Michigan are on hand for the shipboard ceremony. After military service, Ford was elected to the House of Representatives, serving MI until he was tapped by President Richard M. Nixon to become vice president.

Service members and their families, senior defense and military officials and other dignitaries, including Ford's daughter and the ship's sponsor, Susan Ford Bales, were aboard the warship for the ceremony. It's named for the 38th president, who rose to the rank of lieutenant commander in the Navy in World War II.

"There is no one, absolutely no one, who would be prouder of the commissioning of this mighty ship than the president of the United States, Gerald R. Ford", she said.

The US is unmatched in its naval power, with the Ford becoming the 20th commissioned carrier in their fleet - while the rest of the world has just 21 between them.

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