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- President Donald Trump marked the four-year anniversary of his famous June 2015 escalator ride that kicked off his presidential campaign.
- The event became an infamous start to Trump’s political journey, as he voiced controversial remarks about immigrants and it was later revealed that the crowd of apparent supporters were paid extras.
- Trump posted a video compilation that depicts the spectacle before hitting back at "never-Trumpers" for the second year in a row.
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President Donald Trump tweeted to mark the four-year anniversary of his famous escalator ride campaign announcement that left a lasting impression
On June 16, 2015, Trump descended into the lobby of Trump Tower to the tune of songs like Neil Young’s "Rockin’ in the Free World" to deliver now-infamous remarks about his political agenda to a crowd of onlookers who were later found to be paid extras.
Trump, who later referred to the spectacle as "the famous escalator scene" that "looked like the Academy Awards," has now marked the anniversary two years in a row by posting a compilation video that hits back against "never Trumpers."
The video begins with Homer Simpson following Trump down the escalator before cuts feature figures including George Clooney, Barack Obama, Stephen Colbert, and Elizabeth Warren brushing off Trump’s candidacy and declaring he would never reach office. The video concludes with scenes of a defeated Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton during Trump’s shock victory.
Among the most infamous details from Trump’s appearance were his comments about his policy priorities, specifically trade and immigration that he made in the lobby after stepping off the escalator.
"Our country is in serious trouble," Trump told the crowd. "We don’t have victories anymore."
Trump assured the crowd he was "really rich," dismissed unemployment rates under former President Barack Obama as "full of nonsense," railed against China for "killing us on trade," and said he was dedicated to building a "great, great wall" along the southern US border that Mexico would pay for.
"Mark my words," Trump promised.
In the now-infamous line, Trump insisted that "when Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best."
The waves caused by the event didn’t stop at Trump’s words. A casting call email obtained by The Hollywood Reporter revealed that some of the onlookers in the crowd had been paid $50 to "wear t-shirts and carry signs and help cheer" on Trump’s campaign.
Former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski denied the claims in the Hollywood Reporter report.
"You know Donald Trump," he said at the time. "There is nobody who believes that when Donald Trump goes somewhere he does not generate the biggest, largest, and most rambunctious crowds on the planet."
The scene was even reportedly being floated among Trump’s re-election campaign, though plans were later scrapped due to conflict of interest concerns with the Trump Organization, the New York Times reported.
Watch the full event below:
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