Remarks by President Trump Before Marine One Departure
White House South Lawn Washington D.C. May 30 8:10 A.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT: Good morning, everybody. We just had news that Turkey released a prisoner that we were trying to get, and they released him a little while ago into home custody and will be released from home custody to the United States pretty soon. And I just want to thank President Erdoğan. We dealt with that, and he was - it was great.
They released this prisoner, hostage - whatever you want to call him. He's at home custody, in Turkey. He'll be released fairly soon, so that's good news. I guess, probably, you know about that.
Other than that, I think things are going very well. The economy is doing fantastically well, beyond any expectation. Unemployment numbers are just about the best in the history of our country. Employment numbers are the best. We have close to 160 million people working today, which is more than we've ever had before.
I'm going out to Colorado today to give the commencement address for the Air Force, which is actually very exciting for me. It's an amazing place. These are great people. So I look forward to doing that.
Q What did you make of Mueller's statement yesterday?
THE PRESIDENT: Well, I think it was the same as the report. There wasn't much change. It was, to me, the same as the report. And there's no obstruction. You see what we're saying. There's no obstruction, there's no collusion, there's no nothing. It's nothing but a witch hunt. This is a witch hunt by the media and the Democrats. They're partners.
And it keeps going. I thought it was finished when the report was released, but it goes on. And, to me, it was the same, frankly, as the report. And he said, basically, it was the same as the report.
Q Do you still think Robert Mueller behaved honorably?
THE PRESIDENT: I think he's totally conflicted. Because, as you know, he wanted to be the FBI Director, and I said no. As you know, I had a business dispute with him. After he left the FBI, we had a business dispute. Not a nice one. He wasn't happy with what I did, and I don't blame him. But I had to do it because that was the right thing to do. But I had a business dispute.
And he loves Comey. You look at the relationship with those two. So whether it's love or deep like, but he was conflicted.
Look, Robert Mueller should've never been chosen because he wanted the FBI job and he didn't get it. And the next day, he was picked as Special Counsel. So you tell somebody, "I'm sorry, you can't have the job." And then, after you say that, he's going to make a ruling on you? It doesn't work that way. Plus, we had a business dispute. Plus, his relationship with Comey was extraordinary.
Now, one other thing I'll say: Why didn't he investigate Strzok, and Page, and McCabe, and Comey and all the lies, and Brennan and the lies, and Clapper and the lies to Congress, and all of the things that happened to start this investigation? Why didn't Comey come clean? Why didn't Comey come clean and say the things that he knows are fact? Why didn't Mueller investigate Comey, his best friend or his very good friend? And there are so many other things.
Here's a question. This is a study of Russia. Why didn't they invest the insurance policy? In other words, should Hillary Clinton lose, we've got an insurance policy. Guess what? What we're in right now is the insurance policy.
Q Do you think he behaved dishonorably?
THE PRESIDENT: I think he is a total conflicted person. I think Mueller is a true Never Trumper. He's somebody that dislikes Donald Trump. He's somebody that didn't get a job that he requested that he wanted very badly, and then he was appointed. And despite that - and despite $40 million, 18 Trump haters, including people that worked for Hillary Clinton and some of the worst human beings on Earth - they got nothing. It's pretty amazing.
Q Do you believe that Russia helped you get elected?
THE PRESIDENT: No, Russia did not help me get elected.
Q That's what it said (inaudible).
THE PRESIDENT: You know who got me elected? You know who got me elected? I got me elected. Russia didn't help me at all. Russia, if anything, I think, helped the other side. What you ought to ask is this: Do you think the media helped Hillary Clinton get elected? She didn't make it, but you take a look at collusion between Hillary Clinton and the media. You take a look at collusion between Hillary Clinton and Russia. She had more to do, in the campaign, with Russia than I did. I had nothing to do.
And, by the way, that's one other thing. If you look, this was all about Russia, Russia, Russia. They don't talk about Russia anymore because it turned out to be a hoax. It was all a hoax. And then they say, "Gee, he fought back. Isn't that terrible? He fought back." Of course, I fight back. Because it was a false accusation - a totally false accusation. And it's a disgrace. And it's a very - it's a very sad period for this country.
And I think, in the end, I will consider what's happening now to be one of my greatest achievements: exposing this corruption.
Q Do you think they're going to impeach you?
THE PRESIDENT: I don't see how they can. Because they're possibly allowed, although I can't imagine the courts allowing it. I've never gone into it. I never thought that would even be possible to be using that word. To me, it's a dirty word - the word "impeach." It's a dirty, filthy, disgusting word. And it had nothing to do with me.
So I don't think so, because there was no crime. You know, it's "high crimes and..." not "with" or "or." It's "high crimes and misdemeanors." There was no high crime and there was no misdemeanor. So how do you impeach based on that?
And it came out that there was nothing to do with Russia. The whole thing is a scam. It's one of - it's a giant presidential harassment. And, honestly, I hope it goes down as one of my greatest achievements because I've exposed corruption - I've exposed corruption like nobody knew existed.
Q China says it's going to restrict (inaudible) and rare earth elements if your trade strategy (inaudible).
THE PRESIDENT: I think we're doing very well with China.
Come here, I want to shake your hand. Come here. You've treated me fairly. Thank you. Thank you.
Q Mr. President -
THE PRESIDENT: Wait. Wait. I want to answer a real reporter's question. We're going to answer a real reporter's question, okay?
China would love to make a deal with us. We had a deal, and they broke the deal. I think, if they had to do again, they wouldn't have done what they did. We're taking in billions of dollars in tariffs. China is subsidizing products. So the United States taxpayer is paying for very little of it. And if you look at inflation and if you look at pricing, it's gone up very little.
The tariffs are having a devastating effect on China. People are fleeing the country with their companies. These companies are leaving for Vietnam, other parts of Asia, and they're even coming to the United States because then there's no tariff.
I think we're doing very well with China. We'll see what happens. But I can tell you China very much wants to make a deal because the companies are leaving China to avoid the tariff. China is becoming a very weakened nation, just as Iran has become a very weakened nation. And Iran wants to make a deal also.
Q Will you see Boris Johnson or Nigel Farage in the UK?
THE PRESIDENT: Say it?
Q Will you see Boris or Mr. Farage?
THE PRESIDENT: Well, I may. Nigel Farage is a friend of mine. Boris is a friend of mine. They're two very good guys. Very interesting people. Nigel has had a big victory; he's picked up 32 percent of the vote, starting from nothing. And I think they're big powers over there. I think they've done a good job.
Q Would you support either of them?
THE PRESIDENT: Well, I like them. I mean, they're friends of mine, but I haven't thought about supporting them. Maybe it's not my business to support people. But I have a lot of respect for both of those men.
Q On the USS McCain, do you think it's fair to the sailors of the John McCain that they were banned from hearing you speak simply because they (inaudible)?
THE PRESIDENT: Yeah, I don't know what happened. I wasn't involved. I would not have done that. I was very angry with John McCain because he killed healthcare. I was not a big fan of John McCain in any way, shape, or form. I think John McCain had a lot to getting President Bush - a lot to do with it - to go into the Middle East, which was a catastrophe.
To me, John McCain - I wasn't a fan. But I would never do a thing like that. Now, somebody did it because they thought I didn't like him, okay? And they were well meaning, I will say. I didn't know anything about it. I would never have done that.
Q Do you owe the sailors of the McCain an apology?
THE PRESIDENT: No, not at all. I heard sailors all went on. We had a tremendous group of sailors from various ships. It was a beautiful day. But the McCain thing, I knew nothing about.