President Donald Trump welcomed Olympic athletes from Team U.S.A. to the White House on Friday, celebrating their accomplishments in the Winter Olympics at Pyeongchang.
“You displayed just incredible strength, representing three very beautiful letters, U.S.A.,” Trump said.
The president praised the athletes for their hard work and determination and their success at the Olympic Games.
“Do we have any quitters here?” Trump asked. After no one responded, he continued: “Good, because I was going to say, ‘Get the hell out of here.’”
Trump personally called up several athletes to shake hands and offered them an opportunity to speak.
He called up snowboarder Redman Gerard to praise him for his gold medal run in slopestyle snowboarding.
— Charlie Spiering (@charliespiering) April 27, 2018
“So when you’re up there doing all sorts of things, do you know what’s happening?” Trump asked.
“It’s kind of a blank mind sort of thing,” Gerard replied. “You’re just hoping to land on your feet.”
When Trump asked Gerard to say a few words, he replied, “Dude, you can’t put me on the spot like this!” before thanking the president for hosting the team at the White House.
He also joked with Nick Goepper, who won silver in the ski slopestyle event. “I didn’t know they had those big slopes in Indiana,” he said.
Goepper shouted “America!” into the microphone, saying it was a “great honor” to be at the White House to represent the United States at the Olympics.
He also praised Vincent Zhou who landed a quadruple lutz in his match.
“It’s such an honor to be here representing the United States of America,” Zhou said. “Kind of speechless right now, but thank you all so much and I’m proud to be here.”
Trump recognized the men’s curling team and the women’s hockey team for winning gold medals.
“Really, one of the most exciting games I’ve seen in hockey — and I watch hockey,” he said.