WASHINGTON, D.C.—Actor Jon Voight set the tone for President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration weekend by opening the Make America Great Again Welcome Concert with a bitter attack on the “negative lies” he claimed were circulated against incoming commander-in-chief during the campaign season
In an unusual move, Voight used his address prior to the noticeably star-starved event on the steps on the Lincoln Memorial to pillory the president-elect’s alleged enemies. Enthusiastic applause greeted remarks, even as scuffles broke out in the crowd between supporters and protesters.
“We have all been witness to a very grueling year and a half for the president-elect,” the Deliverance actor said, before quoting Trump’s famous campaign tagline. “We have been witnessed to a barrage of propaganda that left us all breathless with anticipation, not knowing if God could reverse all the negative lies against Mr. Trump, whose only desire was, whose only desire was to make America great again.”
It is unclear whether Voight was alluding to the unverified dossier Buzzfeed and CNN published last week, which included claims the Russian government possessed video footage of Moscow prostitutes urinating on a mattress for Trump’s pleasure. Arizona Sen. John McCain, a critic from the president-elect’s own party, had shared the document—allegedly compiled by a British intelligence official—with the Federal Bureau of Investigations, who briefed Trump, President Barack Obama and Vice President Joseph Biden on its details.
The Midnight Cowboy star may also have been referring to the numerous allegations of sexual assault lodged against Trump in the past four months.
The Queens-born businessman has been the subject of numerous investigative reports into the questionable activities of his charity, his Trump University real estate seminar, his construction and casino projects and his never-released taxes. Yet Voight lauded the president-elect’s character, and argued that he enjoyed the sanction both of the divine and history’s most storied Republican president.
“He certainly didn’t need this job, and yet, and yes, God answered all our prayers. Because here it is: we will be part of history, all of us. And President Lincoln, who sits here with us, I’m sure is smiling knowing America will be saved by an honest and good man who will work for all the people, no matter their creed or color,” said Voight. “So my friends, let us rejoice in knowing that from this time on, we will see a renewed America.”