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Trump Touts Cabinet Picks in First Pre-Inauguration Event

  • VOA News

President-elect Donald Trump, left, stands with Vice President-elect Mike Pence during the presidential inaugural Chairman's Global Dinner in Washington, Jan. 17, 2017.

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump told foreign diplomats in Washington D.C. Tuesday that he has "great respect for your countries" and "great respect for our world.''

Trump attended the Chairman’s Global Dinner, an invitation only, black tie affair aimed at introducing foreign diplomats to Trump’s incoming administration.

The president-elect told the attendees he was very proud of the Cabinet he'd put together.

"We've put together a team, I think the likes of which has never been assembled," he said. "So, we'll have further reports in the years to come, but I think you'll see that."

He added that his choice for secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, also was in attendance.

Trump said he was proud of the way Tillerson has handled himself during his confirmation hearings last week.

"I think it's tougher than he thought," he said. "He figured, you know, he's lived this charmed life. He goes into this country and takes their oil, goes into another country. It's tough dealing with these politicians, right?"

Rex Tillerson, President-elect Donald Trump's choice for secretary of state, attends the presidential inaugural Chairman's Global Dinner in Washington, Jan. 17, 2017.
Rex Tillerson, President-elect Donald Trump's choice for secretary of state, attends the presidential inaugural Chairman's Global Dinner in Washington, Jan. 17, 2017.

Trump thanked the diplomats and top donors at the event.

"We have so many friends, 147 diplomats and investors, never been done before," he said.

Vice President-elect Mike Pence sought to reassure the diplomatic guests.

"The truth is, and this may be news to many of you, but I'm not sure that the national media here in America completely understands the president-elect," Pence said in introducing Trump. "Donald Trump will be a president who puts America first, but we will work every day with nations around the world to advance the peace and prosperity of our allies and our friends across the world."

Trump also claimed people were predicting record crowds for his inauguration Friday.

"I saw the Bikers for Trump — boy, they had a scene today," he said. "I don't know if I would want to ride one of those, but they do like me. That's like additional security with those guys, and they're rough."

"And they had thousands of those guys coming into town. And let me tell you, they are great people and we are getting, I think, I must have gotten 100 percent of their votes. Between the military, the police, law enforcement, the bikers, we had an incredible election. And nobody thought it could happen to the extent it happened," he said.

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