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Pool Report #3a
Chris Johnson • Washington Blade
February 8, 2017: 10:48 AM

POTUS, wearing a dark suit and blue tie, entered Salon 123 at 9:17 to applause before instructing the audience to be seated.

Complimenting the attendees, POTUS referred to them as the "big ones" and said they're people he's "truly comfortable with."

POTUS began remarks with discussion of immigration ban and ongoing litigation.

"It's really incredible to me that we have a court case that's going on so long," POTUS said.

"They're interpreting things differently than probably 100 percent of the people in this room," POTUS added.

POTUS read portions of immigration law he said gives him authority for the ban, splicing it with comments such as, "It was written beautifully" and "a bad high school student would understand this."

POTUS joked the "only mistake" is the law should have referred to the president as "he or she, but hopefully it won't be for at least another seven years."

POTUS said he heard the phone live steam of the 9th Circuit arguments. "I listened to the lawyers on both sides last night," POTUS said.

POTUS also knocked the judiciary and said if judges "wanted to help the court" they'd "do what they should be doing," which presumably means rule in his favor.

"Courts seem to be so political, and it would be so great for the justice system if they'd be able to read a statement and do what's right," POTUS said.

POTUS said he wanted to a put a month delay in order, and if not that a week delay, but was told by law enforcement that would be a bad idea because potentially dangerous people would rush to enter U.S. before ban went into effect.

POTUS lauded federal judge in Boston who ruled I his favor and said he asked administration lawyers why they couldn't use arguments in that ruling, but was told the situations are different.

Saying "they're taking away our weapons one-by-one," POTUS said ban is tool for law enforcement.

"This is a weapon that you need and they're trying to take it away from you," POTUS said.

POTUS referenced his SCOTUS nominee Neil Gorsuch and said he's "going to be an outstanding member of the Supreme Court."

Decrying what he said is rising crime generally, POTUS drew attention to Chicago and said more than 4,000 people shot last year.

"What is going on in Chicago? We cannot allow this to continue," POTUS said. He added too many lives are "claimed by gangs" and communities are "crippled" with violence. POTUS called for "national action."

"It's time to start to stop the drugs from pouring into this country," POTUS said.

To aid Secretary Kelly with that effort, POTUS said, "We will give him a wall, and it will be a real wall."

POTUS said wall is "being designed right now" and dismissed speculation was kidding about building it.

"I don't kid," POTUS said.

Pool ushered out at 9:41 as POTUS was concluded his remarks.

Motorcade started rolling at 9:49 and returned to White House at 9:52.

Pool briefly saw POTUS exit limo and enter the Oval Office.

More to come...

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