Trump issues statements on North Korea, legislative negotiations in last-minute event
President Donald Trump will deliver a statement to the press at 3 p.m. Tuesday from the Roosevelt Room of the White House. This event suddenly replaced the daily White House press conference on the schedule and comes just after the report of another North Korean missile launch. The White House has not indicated if the president will take questions and said that the event would not air live. A playback of his comments will be added to this post as soon as it is available.
Pool transcript of Trump’s remarks
Members of the press entered the Roosevelt room at around 3:40. President Trump was seated at a table that included House Speaker Paul Ryan, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, Mick Mulvaney and senior policy adviser Stephen Miller.
There were empty chairs on both sides of President Trump with placards for House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer who had refused to meet with him.
Trump spoke about the missile launch from North Korea. He said, “I will only tell you that we will take care of it.”
He said that he just had a “long discussion” about it and it is a “situation we will handle.”
Trump went on to say that he is “not that surprised” that Pelosi and Schumer did not show up to White House discussions. He said they were “weak” on crime and illegal immigration, and added that Democrats used to be “all talk, no action” and that now “not even talk.”
However, he said, “in light of the missile launch they will be here fairly quickly.”
Trump went on to say that he thinks the Senate GOP tax plan will pass and be very popular.
He estimated that over $4 trillion of off shore money will be brought back.
Trump added that his meeting with Senate Republicans was a “love fest.”
Paul Ryan then spoke and said he regrets that his Democratic colleagues couldn’t join the meeting. It was then McConnell’s turn who said that he “can’t recall ever turning down” such a meeting at the White House.
Trump then asked Mattis to make some comments about the NK missile launch.
The Defense Secretary said that the ICBM was shot “higher frankly than any previous shots” NK has taken.
He said that NK’s continued effort to develop weapons “endangers world peace, regional peace and certainly he United States.”
Trump was then asked two questions.
Whether missile launch changed his approach to North Korea.
He said his approach to North Korea hasn’t changed.
Whether Democrats would be to blame for a government shutdown.
“Would absolutely blame Democrats if that happens.”
He said that would cause “illegals pouring in,” “crime pouring in.”
Like earlier he noted that since the missile launch occured “things have change” that “will have a huge effect.”
“They should be calling immediately and saying we want to see you.”