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Remarks by President Trump Before Air Force One Departure president, donald trump, dnlds wht hs, remarks, air force one, august 13, 2019
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Remarks by President Trump Before Air Force One Departure

Press Release:

Morristown Municipal Airport  •  Morristown, New Jersey  •  August 13  •  11:53 A.M. EDT

    THE PRESIDENT: The stock market continues to do very well. We have very, very strong numbers. We have a lot of artificial numbers from other countries because they're all devaluing their currencies. They're really doing things that aren't very good for their countries, in my opinion. But, short term, it's very good for their countries. Long term, possibly not.

    And we're not following suit. We have a Fed that decides not to cut interest rates, which is a very bad thing. Because, right now, we have to follow suit; we should be following suit. But we have a very powerful country, a very strong economic and military country. We've never been better. The stock market is way up today for various reasons, including tariffs.

    I just see where we've collected close to $59 billion in tariffs so far. And, in my opinion, the consumer has not paid for it because of the devaluation by China. They devalued and they pumped a lot of money into their system. So, it's really been an amazing - it's been an amazing period of time.


    Q   Why did you make the decision on the tariffs, to delay the implementation of the tariffs?

    THE PRESIDENT: Only to help, I think, a lot of different groups of people. And we had a very good talk yesterday with China - a very, very productive call. I think they want to do something. I think they'd like to do something dramatic. I was not sure whether or not they wanted to wait until a Democrat has a chance to get in. Hopefully that's not going to happen because the economy would go to hell in a handbasket very fast.

    But they really would like to make a deal. The call itself was very productive. I'm not sure if it was the tariffs or the call, but the call was very productive. Again, they've said this many times; they've said they're going to buy farm products. So far, they've disappointed me with the truth. They haven't been truthful, or, let's say, they've certainly delayed the decision. But it's their intention to buy a lot of farm product.

    And we did - we had a very good call with China. I mean, they would really like to do - as you know, they have a problem in Hong Kong, but they would like very much to do something.

    Q   Would you consider moving the tariffs, even? Delaying them even further, past December 15?

    THE PRESIDENT: No, we're doing this for Christmas season, just in case some of the tariffs would have an impact on U.S. customers, which, so far, they've had virtually none. The only impact has been that we've collected almost $60 billion from China - compliments of China. But just in case they might have an impact on people, what we've done is we've delayed it so that they won't be relevant for the Christmas shopping season.


    Q   Mr. President, can you please explain your decision to retweet that comment about Jeffrey Epstein and the -

    THE PRESIDENT: Yeah, he's a very highly respected, conservative pundit. He's a big Trump fan. That was a retweet. That wasn't from me; that was from him. But he's a man who has half a million followers. A lot of followers. And he's respected.

    And, as you know, Bill Barr wants to do an entire investigation of the whole Epstein matter, what happened. He's been going on for a long - that's been going on for a long time, the whole Epstein episode. And I know it's under investigation by Attorney General Barr, and I'm sure he's going to be handling it.

    The retweet, which is what it was - it was a retweet - was from somebody that's a very respected, conservative pundit. So I think that was fine.


    Q   But is it appropriate for you to be spreading that kind of conspiracy theory? I presume you don't know that that's true.

    THE PRESIDENT: No, basically what we're saying is we want an investigation. I want a full investigation, and that's what I absolutely am demanding. That's what our Attorney General - our great Attorney General - is doing. He's doing a full investigation.

    Q   Are you concerned about what you're seeing in Hong Kong? Do you want China to exercise restraint?

    THE PRESIDENT: The Hong Kong thing is a very tough situation. Very tough. We'll see what happens. But I'm sure it'll work out. I hope it works out for everybody, including China, by the way. I hope it works out for everybody.

    Q   Have you seen the gathering of military troops, apparently close to protestors? And there's worries about that.

    THE PRESIDENT: Oh, it's a very tricky situation. I think it'll work out. And I hope it works out for liberty. I hope it works out for everybody, including China. I hope it works out peacefully. I hope nobody gets hurts. I hope nobody gets killed.

    Q   Mr. President, are you more optimistic now that there's a chance of getting a deal between China on trade?


    THE PRESIDENT: Well, I've always been optimistic. My only question is whether or not they were willing to wait and take the chance on winning the election and deal with somebody who's weak and ineffective and doesn't know what he's doing or she's doing, like they've had in the past.

    This should have been done 25 years ago. It should have been done 10 years ago or 5 years ago. This should have been done a long time ago. This should have been done by Biden and Obama. China is taking out $500 billion a year, and much more than that, if you include the theft of intellectual property. What I'm doing now should have been done many years ago.

    Q   On another issue: Ken Cuccinelli today said, on NPR, that maybe there ought to be a different poem on the Statue of Liberty that says immigrants who come can stand up for themselves and take care of themselves. Do you think that should be changed?

    THE PRESIDENT: Well, I don't think it's fair to have the American taxpayer - you know, it's about "America First." I don't think it's fair to have the American taxpayer paying for people to come into the United States.

    So what we've done is institute what took place many, many years ago - at our founding, virtually. But we are just reinstituting it. And I think it's long overdue.

    I am tired of seeing our taxpayer paying for people to come into the country and immediately go onto welfare and various other things. So I think we're doing it right.

    Q   Mr. President, you tweeted about a word that Chris Cuomo found racially offensive. Even Sean Hannity defended him. Is that appropriate for you to tweet about that?

    THE PRESIDENT: I think that what Chris Cuomo did was horrible. His language was horrible. He looked like a total, out-of-control animal. He lost it. And, frankly, I don't think anybody should defend him because he spews lies every night. So I don't know why anybody would defend him. But Chris Cuomo was out of control. I watched it. I thought it was terrible.

    So I don't know who's defending him. Maybe they didn't see it. Maybe they haven't gotten a full picture. But I think anybody that would have seen Chris Cuomo would have said that was a disgrace. You've never seen me do that.


    Q   But you wound up tweeting in response to it, saying that maybe he should be flagged by a "red flag" list. Doesn't that sort of undermine the whole argument that's going on right now and the push for that?

    THE PRESIDENT: Well, I think Chris Cuomo was so out of control that I would not have wanted to see a weapon in his hand. I guess his fist is not a weapon or he would have done something. You know, he talked about it but he didn't do anything.

    But I think Chris Cuomo was very much out of control, actually.


    Read the full transcript HERE.

You can visit a collection of all White House posts by clicking here.


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