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Watch Clint Eastwood’s Speech at Republican National Convention

August 30, 2012 at 12:00 AM EDT
Actor, producer and director Clint Eastwood was revealed as the Republican National Convention's "Mystery Speaker" Thursday night, talking to the crowd about the need for change and supporting GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney.

TRANSCRIPT

CLINT EASTWOOD: Thank you very much. Thank you. Thank you very much. Thank you.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: Save a little for Mitt.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: Now, I know what you are thinking.

You’re thinking, what’s a movie tradesman doing out here? You know they are all left-wingers out there, left of Lenin. At least, that is what people think, but that is not really the case. There is a lot of conservative people, and a lot of moderate people, Republicans, Democrats in Hollywood.

It is just that the conservative people by the nature of the word itself play it a little more close to the vest, and they don’t go around hot-dogging it. But they are there. Believe me, they are there.

And I just — I in fact, there are some of them around town. I saw Jon Voight. There’s a lot of people that are around here in town. Jon is here, an Academy Award winner, terrific guy.

And these are people that are all like-minded like all of us. So I have got. I have got Mr. Obama sitting here.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: And he’s — I just was going to ask him a couple of questions, but, you know, about — I remember three-and-a-half years ago, when Mr. Obama won the election.

And though I was not a big supporter, I was watching that night when he was having that thing, and they were talking about hope and change. And they were talking about, yes, we can.

And it was dark and outdoors and it was nice. And people were lighting candles. And they were saying candles — I just thought, this is great. Everybody’s crying. Oprah was crying.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: And I was even crying.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: And then finally — I haven’t cried that hard since I found out that there is 23 million unemployed people in this country.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: And, now, that is something to cry for, because that is a disgrace, a national disgrace. And we haven’t done enough, obviously. This administration hasn’t done enough to cure that.

And whatever — whatever interests they have is not strong enough. And I think possibly now it may be time for somebody else to come along and solve the problem.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: So, Mr. President, how do you handle — how do you handle promises that you have made when you were running for election, and how do you handle — how do you handle it?

What do you say to people? Do you just — you know, I know people — people are wondering — you don’t — you have it. OK.

Well, I know even some of the people in your own party who were very disappointed when you didn’t close Gitmo. And I thought — well, I think closing Gitmo, why close that? We spent so much money on it.

But I thought maybe it’s an excuse — what do you mean shut up?

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: OK. Just — I thought it was just because somebody had a stupid idea of trying terrorists in downtown New York City.

Maybe that was it.

(LAUGHTER)

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: I have got to hand it to you. I have got to give credit where credit is due. You did overrule that, finally. That’s — now we are moving onward.

I know in the — I know you were against the war in Iraq. And that’s OK. But you thought the war in Afghanistan was OK. I mean, you thought that was something that was worth doing. We didn’t check with the Russians to see how they did there for the 10 years.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: But it — we did it. And it’s something to be thought about.

And I think that when we get to maybe — I think you mentioned something about having a target date for bringing everybody home. And you give that target date. And I think Mr. Romney asked the only sensible question on it. He says, why are you giving the date out now? Why don’t you just bring them home tomorrow morning?

And I thought…

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: I thought, yes. There’s a — I’m not going to shut up. It’s my turn.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: So, anyway, we got — we are going to have — we are going to have to have a little chat about that.

And then I just wondered — all these promises, and then I wondered about, you know, when the — what? What do you want me to tell Romney? I can’t tell him to do that. He can’t do that to himself. You’re crazy. You are absolutely crazy.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: You are getting as bad as Biden.

(LAUGHTER)

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: Of course, we all know Biden is the intellect of the Democratic Party.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: So we — just a kind of a kind of a grin with a body behind it, this kind of a thing.

But I just think that there is so much to be done. And I think that Mr. Romney and Mr. Ryan are two guys that can come along.

See, I never thought that it was a good idea for attorneys to be president anyway because it’s… 

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: Yes.

I think attorneys are so busy — they’re always taught to argue everything and always weigh everything and weigh both sides. And they’re always — you know, they’re always devil’s advocating this and bifurcating this and bifurcating that, all that stuff.

But I think it’s maybe time, what do you think, for maybe a businessman? How about that?

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: A stellar businessman — quote, unquote — “a stellar businessman.” And I think it’s that time. And I think if you just kind of stepped aside and Mr. Romney can kind of take over, you could still use the plane.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: Though maybe a smaller one, not that big gas guzzler that you are driving around when you’re going around to colleges, and talking about student loans and stuff like that.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: You are an ecological man. Why would you want to drive that truck around?

OK. Well, anyway, all right. I’m sorry. I can’t do that to myself either.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: Anyway.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: But I would just like to say something, ladies and gentlemen, something that I think is very important.

It is that you, we — we own this country.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: Thank you. Thank you.

Yes, we own — And it’s not you owning it and not politicians owning it. Politicians are employees of ours.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: And so they’re just going to come around and beg for votes every few years, and it’s the same old deal.

But I just think that it’s important that you realize that — and you are the best in the world. And whether you’re a Democrat or whether you’re a Republican or whether you are a libertarian or whatever, you are the best. And we should not ever forget that. And when somebody does not do the job, we have got to let them go.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: Let them go.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: OK. Yes. OK. Just remember that.

I am speaking out for everybody out there. It doesn’t hurt. We don’t have to be…

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Clint, you make my day!

CLINT EASTWOOD: I don’t say that word anymore.

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: Well, maybe one last time. 

(LAUGHTER)

CLINT EASTWOOD: We don’t have to be — what I am saying is, we don’t have to be mental masochists and vote for somebody that we don’t even really want in office, just because they seem to be nice guys or maybe not-so-nice guys, if you look at some of the recent ads going out there. I don’t know.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: But, OK.

You want to make my day, huh? All right.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: All right. I will start it, you finish it.

Go ahead…

CROWD: Make my day!

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

CLINT EASTWOOD: All right. Thank you. Thank you very much.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)