Trump On Trade Wars With China, U.S. Allies: ‘We’ve Been the Stupid Country for So Many Years’

During his broad-ranging interview with 60 Minutes, President Trump said America has been a “stupid country” in the past, while also defending his approach to international economics and foreign policy.

Lesley Stahl pressed Trump on his escalating trade wars with China and their retaliation across multiple markets. Trump disputed her “trade war” characterization and that eventually led to a chat on the Trump Administration’s tariffs against American allies.

“I mean, what’s an ally?” Trump said. “We have wonderful relationships with a lot of people. But nobody treats us much worse than the European Union.”

Stahl continued to ask about this “hostile” approach, and whether Trump would consider dissolving the western alliance under NATO.

“We’ve been the stupid country for so many years,” Trump said. “We shouldn’t be paying almost the entire cost of NATO to protect Europe, and then on top of that, they take advantage of us on trade.”

[Mediaite]

White House Will ‘Look Into’ Fox News’ Decision to Stop Broadcasting Trump Rallies

The White House has vowed to “look into” a decision taken by Fox News to stop broadcasting Donald Trump’s rallies live and in full because they’re no longer bringing in high ratings. Politico reports viewing figures for Trump rallies have dropped and tend to be similar to, or even below, those for regular programming. The network only showed clips of his three rallies over the last week, rather than broadcasting the whole events uninterrupted. The report states White House figures are concerned Trump is losing control of a key platform ahead of the midterms. One senior White House official told Politico they were unsure why the network is cutting away from the rallies, saying officials planned “to look into that” and that they expect White House Communications Director Bill Shine, a former Fox News executive, to be in touch with his former colleagues about the move.

[The Daily Beast]

Trump issues nonsensical tweet mocking ‘paid protesters’ as unpaid

President Donald Trump again lashed out at demonstrators who opposed his Supreme Court nominee by smearing them as paid protesters whose checks had not yet cleared.

The president last week baselessly accused protesters against Brett Kavanaugh as bought and paid for, but he issued a tweet Tuesday morning mocking them as unpaid by their alleged benefactors.

“The paid D.C. protesters are now ready to REALLY protest because they haven’t gotten their checks – in other words, they weren’t paid!” Trump tweeted. “Screamers in Congress, and outside, were far too obvious – less professional than anticipated by those paying (or not paying) the bills!”

[Raw Story]

Trump calls Kavanaugh allegations a ‘hoax set up by the Democrats’

President Trump said Monday that he expects a lot of Democratic voters to support Republican candidates in the upcoming midterms because of how the party’s lawmakers handled sexual misconduct allegations against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

“The main base of the Democrats have shifted so far left that we’ll end up being Venezuela. This country would end up being Venezuela. I think a lot of Democrats are going to be voting voting Republican on Nov. 6,” Trump told reporters at the White House before departing for a law enforcement event in Florida.

The president seized on the specter raised by some liberals of impeaching Kavanaugh, who was confirmed to the Supreme Court on Saturday after being accused by three women of sexual misconduct and facing questions from Democrats about his judicial temperament.

Trump dismissed the allegations against Kavanaugh — including that he sexually assaulted Christine Blasey Ford when the two were in high school — as “a hoax that was set up by the Democrats.”

He later blasted allegations from Julie Swetnick that Kavanaugh was present at parties where high school boys got girls drunk so they could be “gang raped,” calling them “made up,” “fabricated” and “a disgrace.”

“And now they want to impeach him,” Trump said. “I think it’s an insult to the American public. I think you’re going to see a lot of things happen on Nov. 6 that would not have happened before.”

Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.), the ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, said last week on the eve of Kavanaugh’s confirmation that Democrats would investigate the sexual misconduct allegations against the judge if the party reclaimed the majority in the House.

Nadler did not comment on the possibility of impeaching Kavanaugh, and other Democratic lawmakers have refrained from discussing that prospect, or indicated they have no intention to pursue it in the near future.

Sen. Chris Coons (D-Dele.), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, called impeachment discussions “premature,” while House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said it “would not be my plan” to impeach the Justice.

The Senate confirmed Kavanaugh on Saturday afternoon in a 50-48 vote, with one GOP senator absent and another voting “present.” Every Democrat opposed Kavanaugh’s nomination except for Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.).

[The Hill]

Media

Trump on why he mocked Christine Blasey Ford: ‘I had to even the playing field’

President Trump said late Saturday  that he mocked Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who accused new Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault, because he needed to “even the playing field.”

Trump discussed Kavanaugh’s confirmation during an on-air call with Fox News host Jeanine Pirro after his rally in Kansas.

Pirro said that Trump was “disciplined” after Ford’s allegations came out and asked him why he decided mock her during a rally last Tuesday.

“You went off script and some people said you were extremely unkind to Christine Ford,” Pirro said.

“But what was it that got you to pivot from your restraint about her and to fight for Kavanaugh at that point?” she asked.

“Well, there were a lot of things happening that weren’t correct, they weren’t true and there were a lot of things that were left unsaid,” Trump responded. “And I thought I had to even the playing field. It was very unfair to the judge, and now I can very nicely say Justice Kavanaugh. It was a very unfair situation.”

[The Hill]

Media

Trump Rails Against ‘Radical’ Democrats: They ‘Have Turned into An Angry Mob’

President Donald Trump started off his MAGA rally in Kansas on Saturday by praising Republicans and railing against the “radical” Democrats who he said have turned into an “angry mob.”

“I want to thank our incredible Republican senators refusing to back down in the face of the Democrats shameless campaign of political and personal destruction,” he began, before pointing fingers at “radical Democrats” for launching “a disgraceful campaign to resist, obstruct, delay, demolish and destroy right from the beginning.”

The crowd booed.

He added: “Brett Kavanaugh is a man of great character and intellect. He is a totally brilliant scholar who has devoted his life to the law. He is a loving husband, a devoted father, and a faithful public servant and he always has been.”

Then after calling what Kavanaugh endured at the hands of the Democrats “unthinkable,” Trump said: “The radical Democrats have turned into an angry mob, you saw that today with this screaming and the shouting, not from the 200 people or, you know what, those people couldn’t fit in the front row. Look what we have here tonight.”

His comments echo an earlier tweet where Trump referred to the protests outside the Supreme Court.

[Mediaite]

Trump mocks Al Franken for ‘folding like a wet rag’ over sexual harassment claims at Minnesota rally

President Donald Trump mocked former Senator Al Franken (D-MN) during a campaign rally in Rochester, Minnesota.

Trump mocked Franken for resigning from his position after being accused of sexual assault. Franken was accused of grabbing a woman during a USO performance.

“Oh, he did something, I resign, I resign, I quit,” Trump said as he mocked Franken.

“He was gone so fast,” Trump said, adding, “He was replaced by somebody that nobody ever heard of.”

[Raw Story]

Media

Trump knocks ‘Saturday Night Live’ after season premiere: ‘It is just a political ad for the Dems’

President Trump on Sunday bashed “Saturday Night Live” after its season premiere, claiming that the show “is just a political ad for the Dems.”

The president in a tweet claimed he does not watch the show, despite previously hosting it and regularly being a focal point of its sketches.

“Like many, I don’t watch Saturday Night Live (even though I past hosted it) – no longer funny, no talent or charm. It is just a political ad for the Dems,” Trump wrote.

“Word is that Kanye West, who put on a MAGA hat after the show (despite being told ‘no’), was great. He’s leading the charge!” the president added.

“Saturday Night Live” opened its 44th season with actor Adam Driver hosting and West, a vocal Trump supporter, serving as the musical guest.

The opening of the show skewered Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s fiery testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, mocking how frequently he referenced his affinity for beer and his use of a calendar from 1982 as proof that he did not attend a party where Christine Blasey Ford alleged he sexually assaulted her that year.

During the show’s “Weekend Update” segment, co-anchors Colin Jost and Michael Che again largely focused their attention on Kavanaugh, with additional barbs aimed at Trump.

West, who wore a “Make America Great Again” hat during promotional ads for the show, did not make any overt political statements during his two performances on Saturday, but delivered a pro-Trump message onstage while the show was off the air.

West pushed back on criticism of his support for Trump, and was booed loudly by the audience.

“There’s so many times I talk to, like, a white person about this and they say, ‘How could you like Trump? He’s racist,’ ” West said. “Well, uh, if I was concerned about racism, I would’ve moved out of America a long time ago.”

[The Hill]

Trump Repeatedly Interrupts Female Reporter After She Questions Him About Message He’s Sending to Women

During a rare solo press conference from New York City on Wednesday, President Donald Trump was asked by Sky News reporter Hannah Thomas-Peter about the message that it was sending women when he referred to the Kavanaugh accusations as a “con job.”

Trump responded by repeatedly interrupting the reporter and mansplaining the meaning of “con job.”

It all started when Trump first identified the female reporter as “the one that was nodding with every nice thing I said.”

She replied it was a habit of hers.

Then, the reporter asked this: “Are you at all concerned at the message that is being sent to the women who are watching this when you use language like ‘con job’ in relation to allegations of sexual assault?”

“That’s like probably the nicest phrase I’ve ever used. I mean, con job. it is. It’s a con job,” he said, seemingly dismissing her concerns and speaking over her. “You know, confidence. It’s a confidence job. but they — it’s a con job by the Democrats. they know it.”

The Sky News reporter then tried to ask, “What about the message that’s being sent to women who are watching?”

Trump interrupted her again.

“They did the same thing with the Russia investigation. They tried to convince people that I had something to do with Russia. There was no collusion, think of it,” he began before noting con job was “not a bad term.”

“Are you worried…” the reporter tried again, but Trump talked over her again.

Then, the president finally made mention of women, but only to say they are “so angry” by the accusations being made.

“I’ll tell you this. the people that have complained to me about it the most, about what’s happening, are women. women are very angry. you know, I got 52% with women. everyone said this couldn’t happen. 52% — women are so angry…Let her have her day in court. Let somebody else have a day in court. But the ones that I find — I mean, I have men that don’t like it but I have women that are incensed at what’s going on.”

[Mediaite]

Media

Sky News

Trump Didn’t Have A Meeting Scheduled With Trudeau — But He Canceled It Anyway

President Donald Trump claimed he snubbed a meeting request from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the United Nations this week. “I’ve told him forget about it,” Trump remarked Wednesday during a news conference on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly.

Canada, however, was quick to cry foul. No such meeting was ever requested, a Trudeau spokesman told CNN, adding: “We do not have any comment beyond that.”

The back and forth about the supposed meeting comes amid the U.S. and Canada’s acrimonious renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, and follows months of souring relations between the two North American neighbors.

Speaking at the news conference, Trump alleged he refused a “one-on-one meeting” with Trudeau because of Canada’s high dairy tariffs and poor “negotiating style.” He also took a shot at Canada’s “representative” in the NAFTA negotiations, an apparent reference to Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland, who has been leading Canada’s negotiations with the U.S.

Trudeau’s “tariffs are too high, and he doesn’t seem to want to move, and I’ve told him forget about it, and frankly, we’re thinking about just taxing cars coming in from Canada,” Trump said. “That’s the mother lode. That’s the big one.”

He added: “We’re very unhappy with the negotiations and the negotiating style of Canada. We don’t like their representative very much.”

Trudeau and Trump were captured on camera briefly shaking hands on Tuesday during a luncheon for world leaders.

Trudeau, who was standing, tapped Trump’s shoulder to greet him. The U.S. president stayed seated as he extended his hand for a cursory handshake. Trump’s decision to stay seated during the exchange has been described as a snub and as showing a lack of diplomatic etiquette.

Trump and Trudeau share a rocky history. In June, after the G7 summit, Trudeau told reporters that Canada would retaliate with tariffs of its own following the imposition of U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum.

In response, Trump lambasted the prime minister on Twitter as being “very dishonest & weak.”

The U.S. has suggested it will forge a new NAFTA deal with just Mexico if it fails to reach an accord with its northern neighbor.

NAFTA, a trilateral trade pact comprising the U.S., Canada and Mexico, has been in force since 1994.

[Huffington Post]

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