tv President Trump at Camp David CSPAN January 6, 2018 11:20pm-11:42pm EST
i was an advocate. i was glad to be an advocate. i found the decision making process, while it was different, enormously challenging, enormously satisfying. while i liked being an attorney i got to say i loved being a judge because the opportunity to resolve disputes, large and small, they all matter to somebody, some of them have large political, public significance, and that's a very satisfying role. >> watch "after words" sunday . ght on book tv on c-span 2 >> president trump has finished his meeting with republican congressional leadership and some cabinet members at camp david. the president took questions from the news media. his is 20 minutes.
president trump: thank you very much. it's good to have you at camp david, a very special place. we started, as you know, yesterday afternoon. we had a couple of incredible meetings. it is a feeling here you don't have in many places. it was a bonding. we got a lot of work done, a lot of great work for the people. security discussed. infrastructure discussed. military, and all types of military situations and applications discussed, general mattis is here, general kelly, a lot of good military input, very important.
funding for the military, which is important. we also went into budget, daca, and we hope you will be able to work out an arrangement with the democrats to get something they would like to see happen is something i would like to see happen, so we are very well prepared for the coming year. we finished very strong. one of the things we are discussing is drugs pouring into this country and how to stop it. it has never been like this. we had never had a problem with drugs, whether opioids or drugs in the traditional sense. it has never been like it is, and we are going to do everything we can. it's a difficult situation. difficult for many countries. not so difficult for some, believe it or not. they take it very seriously and they are very harsh.
those are the ones who have less difficulty, but we will be working on that this year. i think we will make a big dent into the drug problem. with that, i think what i will do is ask mitch mcconnell to say a few words, and then i will have paul ryan, and perhaps you can ask questions to some of the folks. we have a great group of talent. i will tell you, the meetings were perhaps transformative in certain ways. we are doing things for next year and one thing mitch said is it will be tough to beat the year we left because what we had last year was something special, especially to cap it ff with the tremendous tax cuts, tax reform, and do not forget the fact that the individual mandate, such a horrible thing for so many people, was terminated, so it s tough.
i would like to ask mitch to say a few words. lease. mr. mcconnell: thank you. very much, mr. president. as you suggest, last year would be a tough year to top. if you are like those of us you like to odium, see america be a right of center of the country. from a right of center point of view, 2017 was the most consequential year in as many years as i have been here in ongress. the president had a phenomenal nominee for the supreme court. 12 circuit judges, the most since the circuit court system was set up in 1991, not to mention deregulation, and to top it off, a boost to our economy through this tax reform ill. it was an astonishing year.
but it is time to look forward. mr. president, i want to thank you for inviting us up. we had a great planning session for 2018. we hope that 2018 will be the year of more bipartisan cooperation in the president's agenda. much of which he just referred to. things that we believe with a significant number of democrats will help us accomplish, so mr. president, thank you. we are excited about the new year and ready to get to work. thank you. mr. ryan: thank you for inviting us to camp david. i am pleased with the fact we had a productive conversation with the president and his team yesterday about how we go forward in 2018. we have big things to do with the american people. we are excited to work on that. as both the president and the leader said, we are set with historic achievements in 2017 we want to build on that we
believe will get our economy growing much faster. what we want to work on in 2018 is making sure everyone enjoys the economic growth to come. we have people sidelined in society to get out of poverty and into the work force. we want everyone to have the kind of life and career they can get in this country and tap their potential. we had issues like infrastructure to attend to, we want to make sure our military have the tools and resources they need to keep us safe, so we have a very bold agenda for 2018. we think it is one that will appeal to everyone between democrats, republicans, and independents, so we are excited about the progress already made and what we have in store in 2018. thank you. present trump: mike? vice president pence: thank you. 2017 was a year of extraordinary accomplishment. the congressional leaders gathered here are incredible
partners with this president nd our administration and with advancing the interest in american people, rebuilding our military, supporting law enforcement, historic regulatory reform, appointments to our courts to uphold the rule of law and the constitution from the supreme court to courts at every level, and of course tax reform, repealing the obamacare, the mandate, and opening up american energy from alaska to around the globe. the president's policies have been achieving extraordinary results. nearly 2 million jobs created, unemployment at a 17 year low. our economy is already growing at a pace most economists are -- did not predict would happen for years. 3%, and we're looking too exciting protections for 2018. as the president said, at the close of 2017, we're just getting started. the president convened the congressional leadership gathered here with members of our cabinet to outline the
president's priorities for the coming year. those include budget agreement, investment in our military to truly rebuild and make the strongest military in the world even stronger still, immigration reform and enforcement, the construction of a wall and border security, as well as the president said, dealing with the issue of daca. we believe there are opportunities after our discussions for bipartisan work from infrastructure, to workforce, to vocational education, and i can say i am even more confident after this weekend's discussion that with the president's leadership and the strong leadership in the congress, we will keep delivering for the american people in 2018, and create a stronger and more prosperous america. president trump: thank you very much, mike. any questions for the group? >> i did not hear any mention of your welfare reform. is that something that is still
on the agenda? president trump: that is a subject very dear to our heart. we will try to do something in a bipartisan way. otherwise, we will be holding it for later but we will be looking to do that in a bipartisan way. yes? reporter: mr. president, you are talking about the policy issues you are focusing on, but this morning you were tweeting about your mental state. why did you feel the need to tweet about that this morning? president trump: only because i went to one of the best colleges. i was an excellent student, came out, made billions of dollars, became one of the top business people, went to television, and for 10 years was a tremendous success, as you have heard, ran for president one time and won. and then i hear this guy who does not know me at all, by the way, did not interview me -- he said he interviewed me for three hours in the white house, and it didn't exist.
ok? it is in his imagination, and what i was heartened by, because i talk about fake news media, is really the fact that so many of the people that i talk about in terms of fake news actually came to the defense of this great administration, and even myself because they know the author and they know he is a fraud. and when i saw some of the people say, and do look at some of his past books, he did one on rupert murdoch -- a terrible exposé and falls, so much false -- i consider it a work of fiction, and i think it is a disgrace someone is able to do something like that, the libel laws are weak in this country. if it were strong, it would be very helpful. you couldn't say whatever comes to your head. just so you know he was never in the oval office.
we didn't have an interview. we did not have an interview. i did a quick interview with him a long time ago having to do with an article, but i do not know this man. i guess sloppy steve brought him into the white house quite a bit, and that is why sloppy steve is now looking for a job. who else? reporter: just a follow-up, the meetings now between south korea and north korea, i was going to ask, are you comfortable this will remain just about the olympics? president trump: i spoke with the president of south korea. he thanked me very much for my tough stance, and for 25 years, they have not been using a tough stance. when you look at what the -- bill clinton did. you've seen the famous clip where bill clinton wants to give them everything. and what i said years ago with meet the press many years ago, i talked -- i do not think
anything has changed -- you have to have a certain attitude and be prepared to do certain things, and i'm totally prepared to do that. president moon called me and we had a great discussion a couple of days ago, and he thanked me very much. and i hope it works out. i very much want to see it work out between the two countries. i would like to see them getting involved in the olympics and maybe things go from there, so i am behind that 100%. he actually thanked me, he said -- and a lot of people have written and said -- without my rhetoric and without my tough stance, and not just the stance, this is what -- not just the stance, this is what has to be done, that they would not be talking about olympics, they would not be talking right now. reporter: are they not also taking this conversation beyond the olympics? president trump: i hope they do. would love to see them take it beyond the olympics. we have a good relationship with south korea. i would love to see it go beyond the olympics. and at the appropriate time, we will get involved.
i like the idea that they are dealing on the olympics. that should be between those two countries. reporter: mr. president, did you ask the white house counsel to ask attorney sessions not to accuse himself? -- not to recuse himself. president trump: the story in the times was off, but everything that i have done is 100% proper. that's what i do. i do things proper. i guess the collusion now is dead because everyone found after a year of study there has been absolutely no collusion between us and the russians. now, there has been collusion between hillary clinton, the dnc, and the russians. unfortunately, you people don't cover that much. but only collusion is between hillary and the russians and the dnc, and any other questions? reporter: in what way was the new york times story off? president trump: you'll find out, but the story was off. reporter: do you stand by attorney general sessions? president trump: yes. reporter: and will he remain with gary cohn? president trump: yes --
i hope so, he was here. did you hear the question, ary? mr. cohn: i did not. president trump: will gary cohen continue or remain in the administration? i said, i hope so. if he leaves, i will say i am ery happy he left. [laughter] come here, gary. are you happy, gary? mr. cohn: yes, i am happy, how is that? president trump: he will hopefully stay for a long time. yes, ma'am? reporter: are you willing to engage in phone talks with the kim jong un right now? president trump: sure. i always believe in talking. i'd be very firm but absolutely i would do that. no problem at all.
reporter: so no prerequisites to coming to the table and talking with them? president trump: look, right now, they are talking about the olympics. it's a start. if i were not involved, they would not be talking about the olympics right now or it would be much more serious. he knows i'm not messing around, not even 1%. he understands that. at the same time, if we can come up with a peaceful and good solution, we are working on it with rex, a lot of people, if something can happen and something can come out of those talks, that would be great for all of humanity, for the world, very important. okay? yes, sir? reporter: do you plan on involving yourself in republican primaries? president trump: yes, that is one of the reasons i believe my poll numbers have gone way up. you'll have to explain that to me someday. but i will tell you, actually, they have been explaining it,
but they want me to be involved and we will be very involved, not only with the senate, also with the house. reporter: and protecting incumbants? president trump: protecting incumbents and whoever i had to protect. we have to have more republicans. with that i think we're going to have some very great bipartisan bills. we need more republicans so we can really get the rest of the make america great again agenda assed, surviving the working -- i will be working for incumbents and anybody else who has my kind of thinking. i think we will make a lot of trips. we will be very involved. i think you folks will be happy because you would do a lot of traveling. reporter: does that include some challengers to incumbents? president trump: i do not see that happening at this moment, no. i think they have scattered. we had somebody who lost in the state of alabama. as far as i am concerned, it
should never have been lost. it's a shame it was lost. with it all being said, we have the right policy, everything. you still need a good candidate. if you don't have a good candidate, you are not going to win. we should never have lost alabama. okay, any questions? yes. reporter: i know that you guys have a long list of requirements and what you wanted to see an immigration tied to daca, can you explain what you mean? president trump: we want the wall. we will -- the wall will happen r we will not have daca. we want to get rid of the lottery system and chain migration. we need additional border security -- we want to get rid of the lottery system and the chain migration. we need additional border security. in terms of what we want, we want daca to happen. i think i can speak for everybody, we want john cornyn
from texas, we all want daca to happen but we also want great security also for our country. so important. we want to stop the drugs from flowing in. ery important. we have to get rid of the visa lottery. you know, the lottery is a disaster. they give you people. as you know, the person on the west side highway that killed ight people and so badly injured many more, they came in through the lottery system. and remember this, this is common sense, they are not sending us their finest. when somebody gets picked in the lottery, we are not getting their best, so we had to get rid of it and chain migration. we have to have the wall. reporter: do you want a lottery chain migration in the same legislation? president trump: yes, and i think the democrats feel strongly about it, too. i mean, chuck schumer is new york. he saw someone who came in
through the lottery system. he saw this man killed eight people on the west side highway that he knows well and loves, like i do. i think he's ok with it. i think we will have a lot of democrats support. i hope so. yes? >> mr. president, have there been any more efforts to get mexico to pay for the wall? president trump: i believe mexico will pay for the wall. i have a very good relationship with mexico. we are negotiating nafta. see how that goes, but yes, in some form, mexico will pay for the wall. reporter: one question? if robert mueller asks you to speak with his committee personally, are you committed to doing that? president trump: just so you understand, there's been no collusion, there's been no crime. in theory, everyone tells me i'm not under investigation. maybe hillary is. i don't know, but i'm not. there's been no collusion.
there's been no crime. we have been very open. we could have done it two ways, we could have been very closed and it could have taken years, but you have done nothing wrong, let's be open and get it over with because it is very bad for our country. it is making our country look foolish, and this is a country i do not want looking foolish, and it will not look foolish as long as i am here. we have been very open and we want to get that over with. anybody else? thank you very much. i appreciate it. thank you. >> c-span's washington journal live every date with news and policy issues that affect you. sunday morning, we take a look at the future of health care
and what changes congress is considering with julie rovnerand the latest on the protests in iran. plus, the trump administration's response. c-span's washington journal, live beginning at c-span eastern sunday morning. join the discussion. >> now, former republican national chair michael steele talks about president trump and the state of the republican party. this was hosted by the washington center for internet's and academic seminars. it's just under an hour. xxx >> all right. let's get ready to go. once again i'm going to give everyone the reminder