Trump makes the 62nd Daytona 500 something special as media heads explode

Although past presidents have attended the Daytona 500, Donald Trump became the first second (media reports to the contrary — see George W. Bush) president ever to utter that famous phrase, "Gentlemen, start your engines!"  Moreover, being Trump, he did the whole thing in the biggest and best way possible, first flying over the race track in Air Force One at 800 feet and then driving the Beast around the track with race cars following, before joining with Melania to salute the military; Gold Star families; and "God, family, and country."

The assembled crowd loved it, greeting Trump with cheers and cries of "USA!"  Meanwhile, Democrats took to Twitter to complain that Trump was spending taxpayer money for the pleasure of Americans.

It started with Air Force One making a breathtaking flyover:

For your enjoyment and edification, a little information about the Beast — and a reminder that the drivers were just as thrilled by the president's show as the crowd was:

You have to appreciate the color commentary here, saying that what Trump did was special — not for Trump himself, but for NASCAR fans:

When Trump emerged from the Beast, the thrilled crowd greeted him with flags, cheers, and chants of "USA!" and "four more years!":

There was a rousing version of the National Anthem, and everyone seemed willing to stand for it:

Trump's speech was short and sweet.  He lauded the military, supported Gold Star families, and reminded the crowd of what counts: "God, family, and country!"

And then came the iconic moment, made more special because the announcer was the president of the United States of America:

Hailie Deegan may have lost the small number of NASCAR fans who loathe Trump, but, to her credit, she wasn't shy about liking the president:

Twitter did its petty little pushback by classifying innocuous pictures as "sensitive material," that the viewer would need special clicks to see:

Led by the New York Times' Maggie Haberman and NBC's Kelly O'Donnell, leftists were outraged that Trump used the "official apparatus of government" for what they view as a political event.  In fact, Trump said nothing political, praising instead the race, the military, and America.  For leftists, though, Trump's mere existence is a political affront:

People pushed back, reminding the Leftists that, while Obama never used the “official apparatus of government” to thrill actual Americans, he used those same apparatuses, plus a chunk of taxpayer money, for his own benefit. One time, he took his wife on a date:

And he often went to basketball games, solely for his own viewing pleasure:

With Obama, it was always about Obama; with Trump, it's about America.

Smugly certain that Trump was playing to a few toothless rubes, of the stereotype Don Lemon found so amusing, progressives both in and out of the media forgot that a large segment of America supports NASCAR events either directly (by attending races or watching them on TV) or indirectly (simply by not being a snot about them).

As for who won the race, aside from Trump and the American people?  Well, today the rain won:

The race got moved to Monday.

At the end of the day, a good time was had by all, as President Trump engaged with the People, rather than limiting himself to the self-styled "elite."

Hat tip: Greg Zimmerman for noting that George W. Bush also said, "Gentlemen, start your engines!"

Although past presidents have attended the Daytona 500, Donald Trump became the first second (media reports to the contrary — see George W. Bush) president ever to utter that famous phrase, "Gentlemen, start your engines!"  Moreover, being Trump, he did the whole thing in the biggest and best way possible, first flying over the race track in Air Force One at 800 feet and then driving the Beast around the track with race cars following, before joining with Melania to salute the military; Gold Star families; and "God, family, and country."

The assembled crowd loved it, greeting Trump with cheers and cries of "USA!"  Meanwhile, Democrats took to Twitter to complain that Trump was spending taxpayer money for the pleasure of Americans.

It started with Air Force One making a breathtaking flyover:

For your enjoyment and edification, a little information about the Beast — and a reminder that the drivers were just as thrilled by the president's show as the crowd was:

You have to appreciate the color commentary here, saying that what Trump did was special — not for Trump himself, but for NASCAR fans:

When Trump emerged from the Beast, the thrilled crowd greeted him with flags, cheers, and chants of "USA!" and "four more years!":

There was a rousing version of the National Anthem, and everyone seemed willing to stand for it:

Trump's speech was short and sweet.  He lauded the military, supported Gold Star families, and reminded the crowd of what counts: "God, family, and country!"

And then came the iconic moment, made more special because the announcer was the president of the United States of America:

Hailie Deegan may have lost the small number of NASCAR fans who loathe Trump, but, to her credit, she wasn't shy about liking the president:

Twitter did its petty little pushback by classifying innocuous pictures as "sensitive material," that the viewer would need special clicks to see:

Led by the New York Times' Maggie Haberman and NBC's Kelly O'Donnell, leftists were outraged that Trump used the "official apparatus of government" for what they view as a political event.  In fact, Trump said nothing political, praising instead the race, the military, and America.  For leftists, though, Trump's mere existence is a political affront:

People pushed back, reminding the Leftists that, while Obama never used the “official apparatus of government” to thrill actual Americans, he used those same apparatuses, plus a chunk of taxpayer money, for his own benefit. One time, he took his wife on a date:

And he often went to basketball games, solely for his own viewing pleasure:

With Obama, it was always about Obama; with Trump, it's about America.

Smugly certain that Trump was playing to a few toothless rubes, of the stereotype Don Lemon found so amusing, progressives both in and out of the media forgot that a large segment of America supports NASCAR events either directly (by attending races or watching them on TV) or indirectly (simply by not being a snot about them).

As for who won the race, aside from Trump and the American people?  Well, today the rain won:

The race got moved to Monday.

At the end of the day, a good time was had by all, as President Trump engaged with the People, rather than limiting himself to the self-styled "elite."

Hat tip: Greg Zimmerman for noting that George W. Bush also said, "Gentlemen, start your engines!"