Photo of Donald Trump

Remarks in an Exchange With Reporters Prior to Departure for Grand Rapids, Michigan

March 28, 2019

Q. Mr. President, Mr. President, is this a victory lap for you, sir.

Q. When you do plan on releasing the Mueller——

The President's Travel to Michigan/National Economy

Q. Is this a victory lap?

The President. So we're going to Michigan. We're opening up car plants in Michigan again for the first time in decades. They're coming in and really pouring in. Car companies are coming in. Toyota just announced $13.5 billion coming into our country. And Michigan is booming, and Ohio is booming, and North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida—a lot of places.

But we have a lot of car companies and we have a lot of companies coming back into our country. And this has been happening pretty much since I've been President. It's really amazing what's going on. But again, because I'm going to Michigan, I will tell you, we'll be speaking about it tonight.

We have companies coming back in, car companies. It's a great thing to see.

Q. Mr. President, the Barr memo said that——

Q. Mr. President, why hasn't——

Investigation Into Russia's Interference in 2016 Presidential Election

Q. Mr. President, this is the first time you've had an opportunity to speak on a scale like this since the Mueller report. Will this be a bit of a victory lap for you?

The President. Well, look, I've been going through that for almost 2 years. But it's really much more than that, because if you look back, you can probably look at the insurance policy area in terms of timing. It's a disgrace what happened.

This was a terrible thing that was put onto our country. Nobody has seen anything like this. Probably never happened before. A beautiful conclusion. I haven't seen the report. Beautiful conclusion.

And there was no collusion at all. There never was. Everybody knew it. I wish it could have gone in 1 week instead of taking almost 2 years. But the result was great: no obstruction, no collusion, no anything. It was a great—yes, it was a great thing. But it took a long time.

Q. But the Barr memo does say that there was interference.

China-U.S. Trade/National Economy

Q. Is this having an effect on the current round of trade talks with China? Our understanding is that the Chinese were waiting for this report to come out before they started making some moves forward.

The President. Well, I can't tell you whether or not it had an impact on other countries, including China. I can say this: that countries are reacting very well. We're doing very well with our trade talks with China, and our trade talks and other talks with other countries. With—our country is doing great. I'll—if you look at——

Q. The Barr memo says that "no collusion," but——

The President. If you look at other countries, if you look at what's happening, the economies of other countries, we're leading the world economically. We're leading the world as far as our economy is concerned. We have a strong dollar. We have—I mean, things are going very well.

And one of the reasons I'm going out tonight to Michigan is, we've brought back so much industry, so many car companies to Michigan. So we're very happy.

Q. But the Barr memo does say Russia interfered. What will we do in 2020 to make sure that we do not have a repeat?

Q. Why cut funding for the Special Olympics? Why do that?

Q. What will you do in 2020 to make sure there is no repeat? Can you answer that, please?

The President. Quiet.

Special Olympics

Q. Why cut Special Olympics funding? Why cut money for the Special Olympics? Why would you cut funding for that?

The President. The Special Olympics will be funded. I just told my people, "I want to fund the Special Olympics."

Q. So you're going to remove that——

The President. And I just authorized a funding of the Special Olympics. I've been to the Special Olympics. I think it's incredible. And I just authorized a funding. I heard about it this morning. I have overridden my people. We're funding the Special Olympics.

Q. Mr. President, the Barr memo does say Russia interfered.

Q. Mr. President, why not release the Mueller report?

Facebook, Inc.

Q. What you think about Facebook banning white nationalism?

The President. Say it?

Q. What do you think about Facebook banning white nationalism?

The President. I don't know.

Q. What do you think about Facebook——

Prime Minister Theresa May of the United Kingdom/United Kingdom's Effort To Withdraw From European Union

Q. [Inaudible]—Theresa May saying that she'll resign if her Brexit deal comes through when——

The President. Well, she's a very nice lady. She's a friend of mine. I hope she does well. I hope the Brexit movement and everything happening there goes very well. But Theresa May is a very good woman. And I'll tell you what: She's strong, she's tough. And she's in there fighting. British Member of Parliament Boris Johnson

Q. What would you think of Boris Johnson as Prime Minister? Because——

The President. I like Boris Johnson a lot. He's a friend of mine.

Q. Mr. President, why did you not declare—[inaudible]?

Q. [Inaudible]—funding for Special Olympics?

Disaster Relief Funding for Puerto Rico

Q. Mr. President, the Governor of Puerto Rico said he won't be bullied by your White House. What's your response to that?

The President. I've taken better care of Puerto Rico than any man ever. We have $91 billion going to Puerto Rico. We have $29 billion to Texas and $12 billion to Florida for the hurricanes. Puerto Rico has been taken care of better by Donald Trump than by any living human being. And I think the people of Puerto Rico understand it.

But you do have a mayor of San Juan that, frankly, doesn't know what she's doing. And the Governor—they've got to spend the money wisely. They don't know how to spend the money, and they're not spending it wisely.

But I'm giving them more money than they've ever got—gotten. And frankly, the people of Puerto Rico, I really have a great relationship with them. And I think, when it comes time, they really do appreciate it.

Q. Mr. President, James Comey——


Q. Mozambique needs help too. They are in the bad situation. They have a flood, and many kids are dying. Mozambique.

The President. Where? Where?

Q. Mozambique. Mozambique. It's in Africa.

The President. Well, that would be—we're going to look into that very much.

Q. Mr. President, will you release the full Mueller report? Do you still favor releasing the full Mueller report?

Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act/Health Care Reform

Q. Question, what health care—which health care plan do you support? Graham-Cassidy[inaudible]—Barrasso?

The President. So Obamacare has been an absolute disaster. I have asked John Barrasso, Senator; Bill Cassidy, who's a terrific health care person; Rick Scott and others to take a look, form a really great plan. We're winning the lawsuit to terminate Obamacare in Texas. We are winning the Texas lawsuit. And right now we're on the winning side. Hopefully, we'll win at the appellate division and go to the Supreme Court to terminate Obamacare.

The cost of Obamacare to people is far too much. The deductibility is ridiculous. It averages more than $7,000, meaning it's unusable. So Obamacare has been disaster. We will take care of preexisting conditions better than they're taken care of now. And I've already gotten rid of the individual mandate, which was the worst part of Obamacare, where you had to pay for the privilege of not getting bad insurance. So——

Q. When will you have a plan? When will you have a plan?

The President. Wait a minute. So we are working very hard on that. John Barrasso, Rick Scott, we have some great people. You look—I mean, we've put together a group of four or five, and Bill Cassidy is a terrific health care person. And they are going to work together, come up with something that's really spectacular. Maybe we'll even get support in the House from Democrats. But it's going to be far better than Obamacare.

If we win on Obamacare, it will be terminated in the court. And we'll see what happens.

Q. What's the timeline? What's the timeline? When will you have a plan?

The President. Well, we're working on a plan now. There's no very great rush from the standpoint. We're waiting for decisions in the court. But we've already won the case against—for the termination of Obamacare—against Obamacare. Now we'll go to the appellate division. We'll see what happens there. I think we'll win; it's in Texas.

Q. Are you——

The President. Wait. Wait. And then, it goes to the Supreme Court of the United States.

Q. Mr. President——

The President. If the decisions are held up, if we win on the termination of Obamacare, we will have a plan that's far better than Obamacare, including, very importantly, preexisting conditions, which I've always been in favor of.

Actor Jussie Smollett

Q. Mr. President, what did the FBI tell you about Jussie Smollett? You retweet—[inaudible]—but what'd they tell you?

The President. Well, I think the Smollett—I think the case in Chicago is an absolute embarrassment to our country. And I have asked that it be—that they look at it.

Q. You asked them?

The President. I think that case is an absolute embarrassment to our country, and somebody has to at least take a very good, hard look at it.

NOTE: The President spoke at 4:17 p.m. on the South Lawn at the White House prior to boarding Marine One. In his remarks, he referred to Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz Soto of San Juan, PR; and Gov. Ricardo A. Rosselló Nevares of Puerto Rico. Reporters referred to Attorney General William P. Barr; Department of Justice Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III; and James B. Comey, Jr., former Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Donald J. Trump, Remarks in an Exchange With Reporters Prior to Departure for Grand Rapids, Michigan Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

Filed Under




Washington, DC

Simple Search of Our Archives