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South Court Auditorium
Eisenhower Executive Office Building

12:24 P.M. EDT

THE VICE PRESIDENT:   Good afternoon.  To Secretary Azar, to FDA Commissioner Gottlieb, to distinguished members of Congress who are with us today from the House and the Senate, to our honored guests, and to courageous families — courageous families who have traveled from near and far, it is deeply humbling to join you here today as President Trump takes historic action to enshrine into American law the Right to Try.  (Applause.)

Today, President Trump will deliver on a promise that he made to the American people, now more than two years ago.  On the campaign trail, our President made it clear that this would be the administration that would open new pathways to treatments for families struggling with serious illness.

Four months ago, the President stood before the Congress of the United States and he said, and I quote, “Patients with terminal conditions should be given access to experimental treatments that could potentially save lives.”  And in a few moments, President Trump will sign this policy into law and give new hope to vulnerable families all across America.  (Applause.)

There are several people to thank before I introduce the President.  First and foremost, I want to thank the members of Congress who are here today; members of the Senate and the House of Representatives who work tirelessly and on a bipartisan basis to advance this legislation.  This is how Congress should work to advance the interests of the American people.  (Applause.)

I also want to thank these remarkable families, some of whom are on the stage and others who are sitting and others who are looking on across the country.  These remarkable families who stepped up in a time of great hardship and pain and struggle in their lives to make America a better place for other families.

They fought to improve the access to the American people, to life-saving medicines and care.  And to these families I say, thank you for what you’ve done for the American people.  (Applause.)

Three years ago, I met a young boy from Indiana who is one of my heroes.  And Jordan McLinn and his mom, Laura, helped us advance Right to Try in the Hoosier State.  And I can tell you, from even before Inauguration Day came, Jordan found us and was a champion for Right to Try on the national level.

Another family we met along the way in Lancaster, in Pennsylvania, an 11-year-old boy named Zack, who I’m told is with us here today.  He told me about his dad.  Zack stood up at a Trump rally, and he bravely walked to the microphone and he asked me if President Trump was elected, if we’d get Right to Try to help his dad and to help a friend, both of whom are struggling with ALS.  And I told him then that President Trump would get it done.  And, Zack, President Trump got it done today.  (Applause.)

And finally, I just want to thank a President who keeps his word to the American people every day.  A President who cares deeply about the families of this country, especially vulnerable families — families that are struggling economically, and families that are struggling with serious illness.

I can tell you, every day of this administration, President Trump has fought to advance the interests of American families.  And today, he keeps a promise that he made.  And it’s a promise he made from his heart, as you’ll hear in just a few moments.

You know, not long ago, I met a little boy named Levi Delimpo — struggling, as many of the families here are struggling.  And his mother told me that they have a verse that they cling to.  It’s a verse from the book of Jeremiah that says, “I know the plans I have for you; plans to prosper you, and not to harm you; plans to give you a hope, and a future.”  It’s a verse about faith.  It’s a verse about hope.  And to these members of Congress, to these courageous families, to a President who keeps his promise, let me say with a prayer on my lips:  Thank you for giving a hope and a future to these and other American families.

With that, it is my high honor and distinct privilege to introduce to you the President of the United States of America, President Donald Trump.  (Applause.)


12:30 P.M. EDT