Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Statement from the Press Secretary

Office of the Press Secretary

Statement from the Press Secretary 


On July 30 and 31, 2019, the United States trade negotiating team led by United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin traveled to Shanghai, China, to discuss the United States–China trade relationship. Vice Premier Liu He led the Chinese negotiating team, which included Minister of Commerce Zhong Shan and other officials. The two sides discussed topics such as forced technology transfer, intellectual property rights, services, non-tariff barriers, and agriculture. The Chinese side confirmed their commitment to increase purchases of United States agricultural exports. The meetings were constructive, and we expect negotiations on an enforceable trade deal to continue in Washington, D.C., in early September.

Presidential Message on the 400th Anniversary of the First Legislative Assembly in America July 30, 2019

Office of the Press Secretary
Presidential Message on the 400th Anniversary of the First Legislative Assembly in America
On this day in 1619, statesmen from the Colony of Virginia gathered in Jamestown as the first deliberative body in what would become the United States of America.  Four hundred years later, the same sense of representative democracy that motivated these statesmen continues to drive our Nation forward and ensures that America is a beacon of hope and opportunity for all.

Known as "the oldest continuous law-making body in the New World," the House of Burgesses, now known as the Virginia General Assembly, was formed as a unicameral body of individuals elected by settlements throughout the colony who served alongside people appointed by the Virginia Company of London.  The Burgesses came from a variety of backgrounds—soldiers, clergymen, farmers, and planters.  They were united in their cause for a better future for the brave settlers who had crossed the Atlantic for God and Country and for their descendants.  From modest beginnings, the first legislative assembly in America would usher in a new era of government that derives its power from the consent of the people.

Four centuries later, the great American Experiment of democratic principles that began in Jamestown continues to thrive.  From local city councils and State capitols to the halls of Congress, legislative bodies across our country continue to deliberate and represent the will of the people.  Today, we recognize the pioneering and unrelenting spirit of Jamestown, which has shaped the character of our Nation, and we celebrate the abundant blessings of freedom we continue to protect and cherish.

May God bless the United States of America.


Office of the Press Secretary

South Lawn

 July 30, 2019 
1:52 P.M. EDT

     THE PRESIDENT:  So, Jamestown was amazing.  I very much appreciate that the Democrats were so respectful because it is what it is.  It’s a very important moment: 400 years.  So I appreciate very much the Democrats.  We had great receptivity.  I guess I saw a few; you only covered the protester.  One protester.

     But Jamestown, I thought, was fantastic.  And I was treated, really, I think -- and I have to -- I obviously thank the Republicans, but I also thank the Democrats.  We had one person.  And other than that, it was really fantastic.

     Q    Mr. President, what do you think about the Brazilian President appointing his son to be the ambassador here in the U.S.?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I know his son.  I find his son to be outstanding.  He’s a brilliant, wonderful young man.  I’m very happy he appointed him.  I think it’s a great appointment.  I know his son, and that’s probably why they did it.  He’s outstanding.  I’m very happy with that appointment.

     Q    Do you think that this is nepotism?

     THE PRESIDENT:  No, I don’t think it’s nepotism because his son helped him very much on the campaign.  His son is outstanding.  He really is.  So I think it’s a great appointment.  I didn’t know that.

     Q    Mr. President, can you get more specific on who exactly has been reaching out to the White House?

     THE PRESIDENT:  What?

     Q    Can you be more specific on who has been reaching out to the White House to say you’re doing great on Baltimore?

     THE PRESIDENT:  A lot of people.  Many, many people.

     And you see it also in the press and you see it on watching television, just coming back.  People living in Baltimore are very happy that I’m bringing out the fact that it’s like living in hell.

     What do you want, John?

     Q    Mr. President, is --

     Q    Mr. President, (inaudible) you've done more for African Americans --

     Q    Hang on.  He called on me.  He called on me.  Mr. President --

     Q    Okay.  It’s my husband.  I’ll be nice.

     Q    The protestor was difficult to miss.  He was standing in front of you, in all fairness.  But my question is, what’s --

     THE PRESIDENT:  No, no.  The only problem, John: You gave the protestor 100 percent of the time.  And it’s -- I don’t care about coverage.  The last thing I need is coverage.

     Q    I gave you a lot of time.

     THE PRESIDENT:  Hey, listen -- hey, John, 100 percent.  Not one word of the speech.  And, you know, we were there about the speech.  The protestor didn’t look so good to me.  I’m going to be very nice.  But you gave him 100 percent.  But, you know, what?  That’s okay.  You often do that.  That’s okay.

     Q    But, Mr. President, the question I wanted to ask was: But what’s the political strategy here?  Because this seems to be causing -- these attacks seem to be causing a lot of division in the country.

     THE PRESIDENT:  What are you talking about by "political strategy"?  Are you talking with --

     Q    The political strategy of --

     THE PRESIDENT:  -- respect to Elijah Cummings?

     Q    No, I’m talking about your attacks against Elijah Cummings and the tone of the attack.

     THE PRESIDENT:  There’s no strategy.  I have no strategy.  There’s zero strategy.  All it is, is I’m pointing out facts.  The most unsafe city in the country -- in our country -- is Baltimore.  It’s received as much money -- it receives top of the line -- billions of dollars.  Somebody said $15 billion over a short period of time.  All of this money goes there.  And take a look at it.  I don’t have to describe it.  Take a look at it.

So, there's no strategy.  It’s very simple.  And Elijah Cummings is in charge of it and he ought to take his Oversight Committee, and he ought to park them in Baltimore and find out what happened to the $15 billion and a lot of other money.

Q    If China doesn’t fulfill its commitment to buy U.S. agricultural products, what will you do?

THE PRESIDENT:  We’ll see what happens with China.  I think we’ll do very well with China.  We’re already doing very well with China.  China has had the worst year they’ve had in 27 years, and we’re having the best year we’ve ever had.  The stock market just hit an all-time high.  We’re doing the best we’ve ever done.  All three indexes -- if you look at it -- indices or indexes, depending on what you want to call.  All three are hitting brand-new highs.  We’re doing the best we’ve ever done as a country, and I’m very happy about it.

Unemployment -- the best numbers we’ve ever had.  By the way, African American unemployment, the lowest in history.

Q    I want to ask you about that.

THE PRESIDENT:  Criminal justice reform: Obama couldn’t do it.  I got it done.  He could not do it.  He didn’t even come close.  That’s great for the African American population, who is very thankful about it.

If you look at all of the Opportunity Zones -- they’re inner-city Opportunity Zones, almost all of them.  African American.  The African American people don’t listen to fake news.  They know what’s going on.

Q    Mr. President, you know that Elijah Cummings is not the mayor of Baltimore, so why are you so angry at him about the city?  Is it because --

THE PRESIDENT:  Elijah Cummings -- yeah.

Q    -- he’s subpoenaing your officials?

THE PRESIDENT:  I’m not angry.  I’m not angry.  I’m just telling you the facts.

Q    You sound angry.

THE PRESIDENT:  I’m not angry at anybody.  I’m just saying, Elijah Cummings has been there for 26 years.  He’s really, by far, the highest-ranking politician.  He’s seen these mayors get thrown out, thrown out, thrown out.  They’re all friends of his.  The corruption and the graft in Baltimore is probably the greatest in our country, or one of them.


Now, he’s in charge of an Oversight Committee.  All I’m saying is take your Oversight Committee and go to Baltimore.  You’ll learn a lot.

Q    Mr. President, on Poland, what are you going to be doing on your trip to Poland?  Are you going anywhere else?


Q    What are you going to do on your trip to Poland?  And are you going anywhere else?

THE PRESIDENT:  Well, we have a very good relationship with Poland.  I have, really, a very good relationship with most countries that the news doesn’t like talking about.  But I have a very good relationship with Poland.  And we’ve been invited by the leadership of Poland, and I look forward to it.  I like the people.

I gave a speech in Poland, which I know you don’t like to say, but it was considered to be a great speech.

And the reason is that I really feel strongly.  I think Poland -- I think they’re great people.

Q    Are you going somewhere else on that Poland trip?

THE PRESIDENT:  We’re looking at it.  We may go to Denmark.  We’re looking at it.

Q    (Inaudible) an acting role at DNI?


     Q    Sue Gordon, do you not want her to be in the Acting role at DNI?

     THE PRESIDENT:  We haven’t named the Acting yet, but we're very happy with the fact that Dan Coats -- I like Dan; he's a friend of mine.  I mean, I think he's a terrific person.  I like him a lot.  And there really wasn’t conflict.  I think it was confusion more than conflict.  Dan made statements, and they were a little confused.  But that was not conflict.

     Dan is a friend of mine.  He's a good man.  But I think that John Ratcliffe is going to do an incredible job, if he gets approved.  He's got to get approved.  But I think he'll do a great job.  I hope he gets approved.  I think we need somebody like that.  We need somebody strong that can really rein it in.  Because as I think you've all learned, the intelligence agencies have run amok.  They've run amok.

     Q    (Inaudible) you've done more African Americans than any other President.  A new poll, Quinnipiac poll, came out today saying that 80 percent of blacks think you're racist.  How do you respond to that?

     THE PRESIDENT:  You know why?  Because the fake news doesn’t report it properly.  People like you.  The fake news does not report it properly.  If the news reported it properly, you know, the right way --

     Q    What's proper?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Like, instead of a statement like you just made.  If the news reported properly, of all of the things I've done for African Americans, of all of the things that -- like criminal justice reform --
     Q    And we talked about that.

     THE PRESIDENT:  -- like Opportunity Zones.

     Q    Sir, we talked about that.  I'm asking about the whole --

     THE PRESIDENT:  I think I do very well with the African Americans.  And I think I'm doing very well right now.  And, frankly, if I didn’t do very well, relatively speaking, as a Republican -- I mean, we should be way, way over 50 percent.  But if you look back over 40 years, it just doesn’t work that way.  If I didn’t do well, relatively speaking, I wouldn’t be President right now.

     But if you look at what I've done for African Americans, it's more than almost all Presidents.

     Q    What is the U.S. goal in trade talks with Brazil?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, we have a good relationship with the President of Brazil, and I'm sure we'll be successful at trade talks.  We'll have them.  And I am just -- you're just telling me his son was appointed ambassador.  I think that's a great appointment because I know his son.  I think he's really competent, just like his father.  He reminds of his father, and I like his father.  And I think it's a great appointment.

     Q    Should the accuser of General Hyten be allowed to testify publicly?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I'm going to leave that up to the Senate.  I am a fan of General Hyten.  We're going to have to see how it all turns out.  But I know he's been accused, and he's saying it's a false accusation, but I will leave it up -- I hear they did an extensive report -- a report very big, very important.  And I will leave that up to the senators.  They're very capable people.  That includes Democrats and Republicans.

     Q    Have you talked to President Xi of China recently?  What would you say to him, that, right now, China's economy is not going that great?

     THE PRESIDENT:  You have to speak differently.  You have a little -- go ahead.  Speak up.

     Q    Yes.  Have you talked to President Xi of China recently?


     Q    What would you say to him?  Right now, China's economy is not doing great.

     THE PRESIDENT:  I would say that his economy is not doing well -- China -- but I like him a lot.  That's what I'd say to him.

     Q    Help us understand the focus on Elijah Cummings and Baltimore.

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I just explained it.  I think I explained it very simply.  Elijah Cummings is -- it was a horrible thing, the way he spoke to the head of Homeland Security the other day.  These people are working hard.  They're getting no support from the Democrats.  The Democrats refuse to fix the loopholes.  They refuse to fix asylum.

Those two things would make it 95 percent easier.  Instead, I'm relying -- and Mexico has been great, but Mexico has done far more than Democrats have.  You know, our numbers are way down, which is a positive.  Numbers in apprehensions are way down.  Mexico now has 21,000, or approximately 21,000 soldiers on the two borders, and they've been really great, I have to say.

Now, I don't know that that's going to stay.  But what we have to do is fix the loopholes, and the Democrats don’t want.  The reason is the Democrats want open borders.  The problem is open borders mean tremendous crime.  People coming in -- you have no idea where they're coming from, who they are.  But I'm President; I can't allow that.

                             END                2:02 P.M. EDT


Office of the Press Secretary


“Our success depends on a coalition of strong and independent nations that embrace their sovereignty to promote security, prosperity, and peace for themselves and for the world.” – President Donald J. Trump 

    ENHANCING OUR STRONG PARTNERSHIP: President Donald J. Trump is expanding our critical security and economic partnership with Mongolia.
    • President Trump was pleased to welcome President Battulga of Mongolia for a bilateral meeting at the White House today.
    • This visit presents a vital opportunity to enhance the already strong United States–Mongolia relationship.
      • The United States supported Mongolia’s establishment of a free democratic society after renouncing communism in 1990, creating a foundation of goodwill that remains today.
    • President Trump and President Battulga are engaging on a range of issues, including defense and security, trade and investment, and sovereignty and rule of law.
      • We are working closely with Mongolia to deepen our security ties and promote a healthy economic relationship between our two countries.
    • The United States and Mongolia have agreed that their relationship has reached the level of a “strategic partnership.”
    STRENGTHENING SECURITY COOPERATION: Mongolia is an important security partner and is working with us to sustain a free and open Indo-Pacific region.
    • Mongolia and the United States share a dynamic security relationship and together we are building an even closer partnership for the future.
    • Mongolian troops stood side-by-side with American forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.
      • Mongolia has pledged to commit troops in Afghanistan through at least 2021.
    • Mongolia has been supportive of our sanctions on North Korea and our negotiation efforts.
    • Through its “Third Neighbor Policy” Mongolia looks to maintain close ties to democratic partners like the United States, Japan, and South Korea.
    • The United States enjoys a strong diplomatic information sharing relationship with the government of Mongolia.
    • Mongolia has been an important host for multinational peacekeeping and security exercises.
    EXPANDING ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES: The United States is working closely with Mongolia to bolster economic opportunities and increase bilateral trade.
    • In 2018, the United States had a $111 million trade surplus with Mongolia, reflecting the significant importance of the country as an export market for American goods such as automobiles and heavy machinery.
    • We are urging Mongolia to fully implement the 2017 transparency agreement between our two countries, which will help improve Mongolia’s business and investment climate.
    • The United States is working with Mongolia to improve opportunities for investment, invest in infrastructure, and enhance education.
      • The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is working to help increase transparency and provide greater access to finance in Mongolia.
      • In 2018, Mongolia signed a $350 million compact with the Millennium Challenge Corporation that aims to improve water supply infrastructure in Mongolia’s capital.
      • The Peace Corps has volunteers working in 21 provinces in Mongolia to provide health education and English language instruction, and plans to increase its presence.

    Statement from the Press Secretary Regarding President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump’s Travel to Poland and Denmark

    Office of the Press Secretary

    Statement from the Press Secretary Regarding President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump’s Travel to Poland and Denmark


    President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump will travel to Poland and Denmark from August 31 to September 3, 2019. The President and the First Lady will attend commemorative ceremonies and visit memorial sites in Warsaw on September 1, 2019, on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the beginning of World War II. The President and the First Lady also accepted an invitation to visit Her Majesty Margrethe II, Queen of Denmark, where the President will participate in a series of bilateral meetings and meet with business leaders. The President and First Lady’s visits will highlight the historic ties between the United States, Poland, and Denmark, as well as our willingness to confront the region’s many shared security challenges.



    Office of the Press Secretary


    Rose Garden

    1:52 P.M. EDT

         Q    Mr. President, have you thought of a name for the horse yet?

         PRESIDENT TRUMP:   I did.  "Victory."

    Q    Victory.

    PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Thank you very much for the horse.  Did you see a picture of the horse?

         Q    Not yet.

         PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Beautiful.

    Mongolia -- they're great fighters.  You know, they're great fighters, great wrestlers, great champions.  Right?  And we have the grand champion of sumo wrestling with us, from a couple of years ago.  And he's here from Mongolia.  I was told that in Japan, actually, that they've had four grand champions from Mongolia.  So they're great, great fighters.  Your people are great fighters.

    Thank you very -- we need great fighters too.

         Q    Do you have any intelligence that Bin Laden's son has been killed?

         PRESIDENT TRUMP:  I don't want to comment on it.  I don't want to comment on that.

         Thank you very much, everybody.  Thank you.

         Q    Can we see you in eight minutes for the Fed rate cut?  

    PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Yeah, we'll have a comment on it.  I'll gladly have a comment on that.

                                 END                1:53 P.M. EDT


    Presidential Message on the 230th Anniversary of the United States Customs Service

    Office of the Press Secretary
    Presidential Message on the 230th Anniversary of the United States Customs Service
    Today, our Nation commemorates 230 years of the United States Customs Service, a precursor to United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP).  We pause to recognize the men and women of CBP and the contributions they make, alongside the rest of our law enforcement community, to our country’s prosperity and security.

    On July 31, 1789, President George Washington signed the fifth law in our Nation’s history, a Bill to govern the “Collection of the Duties imposed by law on the tonnage of ships or vessels, and on goods, wares and merchandises imported into the United States.”  Although it has existed in different forms since the 18th century, the Customs Service has always stayed true to its original mission: to protect our country’s borders and preserve the integrity of our ports of entry.  In 2003, CBP was formed to carry forward the Customs Service’s founding mission into the 21st century.  Since then, CBP has developed into one of the world’s largest law enforcement organizations and helped ensure the safety and prosperity of our Nation.

    Far too often, however, the brave men and women of CBP do not receive the credit they deserve.  My Administration stands proudly as they work to stop the flow of drugs and violence crossing over into our great country.  We will continue to ensure that all of our law enforcement personnel have the resources and training they need to protect our homeland, safeguard our citizens, and address the crisis at our southern border.

    On this day, we recognize the historical importance of the Customs Service, and we commend the more than 60,000 CBP employees for their efforts to protect the American people.


    1600 Daily The White House • July 30, 2019 What Happened 400 Years Ago Today

    1600 Daily
    The White House • July 30, 2019

    What happened 400 years ago today 

    The great American Experiment of government by the people was born on July 4, 1776, when the Continental Congress approved the Declaration of Independence. But the groundwork for that fateful day was laid 157 years earlier at a small church in Virginia.    

    On July 30, 1619, the first legislative assembly in what would become the United States of America met in Jamestown. Known as “the oldest continuous law-making body in the New World,” the House of Burgesses is now known as the Virginia General Assembly.

    Watch: President Trump commemorates 400 years of American democracy

    “On this day in 1619, just a mile south of where we are gathered now, 22 newly elected members of the House of Burgesses assembled in a small wooden church,” President Trump said today in Williamsburg, Virginia. “They were adventurers and explorers, farmers and planters, soldiers, scholars, and clergymen. All had struggled, all had suffered, and all had sacrificed in pursuit of one wild and very improbable dream.”

    They called that dream “Virginia,” the President added.

    The Jamestown settlers’ story is well-known to most American schoolchildren, but it’s worth reflecting on just how daunting the challenges that faced these pioneers were. They arrived in America during what we now know was one of the worst droughts in over seven centuries. In their third winter in the New World, known as the “Starving Time,” a population of around 500 settlers was reduced to 60. The rest didn’t make it to spring.

    “Together, the settlers forged what would become the timeless traits of the American character,” President Trump said. “They worked hard. They had courage in abundance and a wealth of self-reliance.”

    When the Virginia Colony formed that first legislative body 400 years ago today, it laid the groundwork for what would become the greatest nation on Earth—with democracy at its core. From city councils and state capitols to the halls of Congress, legislative bodies across America continue to deliberate and represent the will of the people.

    “In our time, we must vigorously defend those cherished democratic traditions that have made our beloved Republic the envy of the entire world,” President Trump says.

    Read President Trump’s full message on today’s 400th Anniversary.

    🎬 President Trump: Our hard-won culture must be preserved.

    Video of the day: Our 9/11 heroes won’t be left behind

    Yesterday, President Trump kept America’s promise to all those who answered the call to serve during and following the September 11 terrorist attacks. Surrounded by first responders and the families of victims, the President signed into law a permanent authorization of the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund.

    “We have an obligation, and it’s a sacred obligation, to the families and first responders of 9/11,” the President said in the Rose Garden.

    In the wake of those attacks, more than 2,000 of these brave men and women have died from illnesses related to the toxic fallout from that day. Nearly 18 years later, thousands more fight the same battle.

    Now, these heroes and their families will always have the financial support they need.

    Photo of the Day

    Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead
    The Mace of the Virginia House of Delegates is seen as President Donald J. Trump delivers remarks to commemorate the 400th Anniversary of the First Representative Legislative Assembly at the Jamestown Settlement Museum | July 30, 2019

    Bill Announcement

    Office of the Press Secretary
    On Tuesday, July 30, 2019, the President signed into law:

    S. 504, the "Let Everyone Get Involved in Opportunities for National Service Act or the "LEGION Act," which expands dates of service for eligibility in the American Legion to any time after
    December 7, 1941.


    Office of the Press Secretary

    Via Teleconference

    2:38 P.M. EDT

         SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  Thanks, moderator.  And thanks to everyone for joining today.  I just wanted to quickly go over the ground rules.  Again, this is provided on background.  Attribution is to a senior administration official.  And we'll embargo the comments here only until the end of the call.  All right?

         Thanks again.  And I will introduce our briefer today, [senior administration official].
         SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  Great.  Thanks for joining, everybody.  I'm pleased to announce that the Mongolian President, Battulga, is going to be visiting the White House tomorrow to meet with President Trump.  This is a meeting we've been looking forward to for a very long time.

         You know, Mongolia is a country that borders two authoritarian states, and, despite that, has managed to establish a free and open democratic society after it renounced communism back in 1990.

    And, of course, many of you will remember that the U.S. and United States organizations played an important role in helping nurture Mongolia's democracy right at the outset.  And that created a foundation of goodwill that persists to today.  And we're looking to really build on that goodwill and expand our ties in terms of security cooperation and as well as in terms of economics.

         So, the current situation for them economically is that about 90 percent of their trade has to go through China.  We've -- want to start talking about and exploring ways that we can help diversify their trade flows.  The United States already does have sizable trade for such -- a country with such a small population.  Although it's a huge geographic area, the United States exports about 121 million dollars' worth of goods to Mongolia in 2018.

    We have a huge trade surplus with Mongolia.  We sell them automobiles and heavy machinery.  And imports from Mongolia include minerals like tungsten, as well as cashmere.  And they've got incredible cashmere that they produce there.

         So, with that, I thought what I would do is field some questions from the group.

         Q    Hi.  This is Steve Herman from the Voice of America.  Thanks for doing this call.  And I'd like to ask whether the administration supports this bipartisan bill on Mongolia.  It was, I think, introduced and died last year.  And it's been introduced again by Ted Yoho and Dina Titus from Nevada, the Mongolia Third Neighbor Trade Act.  And if you do support it, how active is the President going to be in pushing it?  Thank you.
         SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  Yeah, Steve, thanks for the question.  We've -- I'm certainly familiar with the bill that you mentioned.  That bill was actually reintroduced in April by Representative Ted Yoho and Senator Ben Cardin.  And as you mentioned, it would enable duty-free treatment for Mongolian cashmere products to be imported, like sweaters and shawls and so forth.

    So I don't want to speak for colleagues in the U.S. Trade Rep's office, but it's certainly an interesting bill.  And I'm sure that it'll be something that comes up in the course of our discussions.

         Q    Hey, it's Jeremy Diamond here with CNN.  Thanks for doing the call.  You know, we've seen U.S. officials travel to Mongolia recently, including the National Security Advisor.  And Mongolia has previously been rumored as a potential site for a future summit between the President and Kim Jong Un.  To what extent is it possible that Mongolia could be the site in the future?  And in what way do you hope the President and the Mongolian President tomorrow will advance discussions as it relates to North Korea?  Thanks.
         SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  Yeah.  Thanks, Jeremy.  The North Koreans -- it's kind of interesting; they've got a relationship that dates back to its Cold War past with North Korea.  And so there's interesting, you know, old ties there and -- which are intriguing.

         Mongolia has been a very strong supporter of the United Nations and the United States economic pressure campaign on North Korea, and -- which, of course, we've been very appreciative of.

         I can't speak to, you know, venues or things like that.  There's nothing currently being planned, in any case, to really make news right now.  But, you know, the Mongolians have a very strong relationship, as well, with South Korea.  I think there are around 40,000 Mongolian citizens in South Korea and a lot of South Koreans who live and work in Mongolia.  Mongolia has an excellent relationship, as well, with Japan.

    And so, you know, we sometimes say that Mongolia has only got two physicals neighbors -- that it’s like a pearl between two oyster shells.  And so, democracies around the region and beyond have been proud to serve as third neighbors to Mongolia.  Mongolia has pushed this so-called “third neighbor policy,” and the United States is particularly honored to be a longstanding and reliable third neighbor to Mongolia.

         Q    Hi, my name is Lalit Jha.  I am from PTI-Press Trust of India.  I wanted to ask you about Huawei.  Will you be asking Mongolia again to not to go by that route in 5G technologies?  And what are the other countries -- can you give us an update on what other countries -- Asian countries -- (inaudible) what countries (inaudible) doing on Huawei?

         SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  Thanks for the question.  I think, if I heard right, you were asking about 5G technology.  You know, irrespective of the country, the United States believes that having safe and reliable infrastructure for 5G systems is critical for all nations' ability to preserve their sovereignty in the 5G era.

         Remember, with 5G, you’re talking about a paradigm shift in technology, not an incremental one.  One in which all of our daily lives are going to be saturated with sensors that are going to be communicating with one another, not just the old paradigm of a couple, you know, cell phones talking to a core network through cell phone towers and routers and then coming back down to another cell user.

    5G will permit devices to communicate very rapidly with one another, and that creates enormous opportunities for predatory and authoritarian states to steal our most intimate data, whether it’s our personal and private data as citizens or whether it’s corporate secrets or very sensitive government and security-related secrets.

    So we think that it’s absolutely critical for countries to be considering all of the long-term consequences and ramifications of going with suppliers from countries that have pursued a totalitarian vision for the role of the state in peoples’ lives and in the economy and in the culture and the like.

    And so, that’s really something that all countries need to take heed of.

    Q    Hello, this is Mark Magnier with the South China Morning Post.  Thank you very much for the opportunity.  You mentioned tungsten, and I was wondering, given -- I guess Marco Rubio just released a bill on rare earths.  Does Mongolia have any role in that?  Or is the administration talking to them and trying to kind of bolster that effort to counter China on that front?  Thanks.

    SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  Yeah, Mark, good to hear your voice.  It’s been a very long time.  Glad to hear that you’re in DC now.  And sorry to punt on your good question.

    I think to answer specifics on like 5 -- or the rare earths and things related to specific deals or minerals, I’d refer you to our Commerce Department and the USTR on that.  I don’t have a lot for you on that front.

    SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  Great.  Well, thanks again everyone.  So this is, again, the first visit by a Mongolian President to the White House since 2011.

    It builds on some of the other engagements that this administration has had, including the visit by the Mongolian Prime Minister last year who came to the White House to visit Vice President Pence.  He also had a handshake and a brief encounter with President Trump up at the U.N. General Assembly last September.

    Ambassador Bolton made a trip out to Mongolia just a few weeks ago.  And we’re very excited to host the President here tomorrow.

    So thanks again for dialing in.

    SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  And just as reminder: This was provided on background.  Attribution to a senior administration official.  And now that the call is over, embargo is lifted.  Thanks so much for dialing in today.

                             END        2:49 P.M. EDT                                           

    President Donald J. Trump Announces Intent to Nominate Individual to a Key Administration Post

    Office of the Press Secretary
    President Donald J. Trump Announces Intent to Nominate Individual to a Key Administration Post

    Today, President Donald J. Trump announced his intent to nominate the following individual to a key position in his Administration:

    Natalie E. Brown of Nebraska, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Republic of Uganda.

    Ms. Brown, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Counselor, currently serves as the Chief of Mission of the United States Embassy in Eritrea.  She previously served as Deputy Permanent Representative and Deputy Chief of Mission of the United States Mission to the United Nations Agencies in Rome, Italy, and as Deputy Chief of Mission of the United States Embassy in Tunis, Tunisia.  Ms. Brown also served overseas at the United States embassies in Jordan, Kuwait, Ethiopia, and Guinea.  In Washington, she served as Senior Watch Officer in the State Department Executive Secretariat’s Operations Center, International Affairs Officer in the Office of United Nations Political Affairs in the Bureau of International Organization Affairs, and Desk Officer for the Office of West African Affairs in Mali, Burkina Faso, and Niger.  Ms. Brown earned her B.S. from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and M.S. from the U.S. Marine Corps Command and Staff College.  She speaks French and Arabic, and has studied Italian, German, Amharic, and Tigrinya.

    The White House Office of the Press Secretary- FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE July 30, 2019 - REMARKS BY PRESIDENT TRUMP BEFORE MARINE ONE DEPARTURE South Lawn

    Office of the Press Secretary


    South Lawn

    9:12 A.M. EDT

         THE PRESIDENT:  So I just want to tell you the economy is doing fantastically well.  We have people over in China right now.  We’re negotiating with China.  We’ll see what happens.  We’re either going to make a great deal or we’re not going to make a deal at all.  But a lot of great things are happening, and including with China.

         Our country has gone way up in terms of its differential.  We’re the number one economy in the world.  It’s picked up tremendously in the last three years since I’ve been here.  So a lot of great things are happening.  A lot of really great things are happening.  The economy is through the roof.  I guess we’ll hopefully get good decisions from certain branches of government.  We’ll see what happens.  But we have a lot of good things happening.

         We were just speaking with the Department of Commerce, and we have interest in our country like we’ve never had before.

         Q    Mr. President, do you regret targeting Baltimore?

         THE PRESIDENT:  No.  Baltimore has been very badly mishandled for many years.  As you know, Congressman Cummings has been there for a long time.  He’s had a very iron hand on it.  It’s a corrupt city; there’s no question about it.  All you have to do is look at the facts.  The government has pumped in, over the years, billions and billions of dollars to no avail -- to absolutely no avail.

         Baltimore is a -- it’s an example of what corrupt government leads to.  Billions of dollars have been given, and I feel so sorry for the people of Baltimore.  And if they ask me, we will get involved.  But we’re already involved from the standpoint that, over many years, billions and billions of dollars have been given to Baltimore.  It’s been misspent.  It’s been missing.  It’s been stolen with a lot of corrupt government.  And as you know, Cummings has been in charge.

         Now, I will say this: I think that Representative Cummings should take his Oversight Committee and start doing oversight on Baltimore.  He’d find out some real things.

         Q    On China, how did the talks go today?  And on the Fed, what should the rate cut be?

         THE PRESIDENT:  So the talks are moving very well with China, but they were often with China.  But China always makes a new deal at the end, or seems to.  We’re taking in billions and billions of dollars from China in the form of tariffs.  Our people are not paying for it.  China reduced their currency.  They devalued their currency, and they’re pumping money into the system in order to pay for it.

         They had the worst year in 27 years.  They’ve had a terrible year because of the tariffs.  A lot of companies are moving out of China.  You’ve never seen this before.  The United States is doing phenomenally well and we’re taking in tens of billions of dollars for -- from China.

         We’re giving some money to our farmers who have been really targeted by China to do a number on them, and -- because they like me.  The farmers like me and I love the farmers.  And I will say that the farmers are very grateful.  The most they’ve ever spent on agricultural product is $16 billion.  So when they pulled out, I took just a small part of the money that China is paying us, and I gave it toward the farmers and the farmers are very happy.

         Q    Is a quarter-point rate cut from the Fed enough for you, sir?

         THE PRESIDENT:  The Fed moved, in my opinion, far too early and far too severely.  It puts me at a -- somewhat of a disadvantage.  Fortunately, I’ve made the economy so strong that nothing is going to stop us.  But the Fed could have made it a lot easier.  I would like to see a large cut, and I’d like to see immediately the quantitative tightening stopped.  It should be stopped.  For them to have done quantitative tightening and also higher interest rates simultaneously, I think, was a big mistake.

         I also think that had they not done it -- as good as we’ve done, we’ve set a record, as you will tell, as you will say, in the stock market.  We have the all-time high in the history of the stock market.  I think I would have been 10,000 points higher and I think we would have been in the fours with GDP.

         President Obama had zero interest rates; we have normalized interest rates.  With zero interest rates, anything happens.  And yet we still blew his economy away.

         Q    Was it a mistake not retaining Janet Yellen?

         THE PRESIDENT:  I don’t talk about that.  I just -- I’m very disappointed in the Fed.  I think they acted too quickly by far.  And I think I’ve been proven right.  People have said I was right; they were wrong.  The Fed is often wrong.  The Fed is often wrong.

         Q    (Inaudible) Washington Post op-ed called Mitch McConnell a “Russian asset.”

         THE PRESIDENT:  The Washington Post called Mitch McConnell what?

         Q    A Russian asset.

         THE PRESIDENT:  I think the Washington Post is the Russian asset, by comparison.  Mitch McConnell loves our country.  He’s done a great job.  We’re trying to pass an infrastructure bill.  It’s being written up right now, as we speak, for our highways and our roadways.

    Mitch McConnell has got more judges than probably any -- I mean, in all fairness, with my help.  But at the combination, we’ve got up -- we’re going to be up very soon to 179 federal judges.  Nobody has ever seen anything like that.  And other than George Washington, we’ll end up having the highest percentage of judges put on the court and it’s going to be a legacy.

         Mitch McConnell is a man that knows less about Russia and Russia’s influence than even Donald Trump.  And I know nothing.

         So I think it’s a horrible thing when a paper -- which is really just a paper for the benefit of Amazon -- the Washington Post is fake news, just like the New York Times is fake news.  It’s put there for the benefit -- the Washington Post -- of Amazon.  That’s my opinion.  And I think it’s a disgrace.

    And if they actually said that, I didn’t read it.  If they actually said that -- that Mitch McConnell is an asset of Russia -- they ought to be ashamed of themselves and they ought to apologize.

         Q    Are you going to watch the Democratic debate tomorrow night?  And do you have a sense yet, in your gut, as to who your likely opponent will be in 2020?

         THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I think right now -- I am watching -- I think right now it will be Sleepy Joe.  I think.  I feel he’ll limp across the line.  That’s what I think.

         So what I think doesn’t mean anything, but I know the other people.  I know him.  I think he’s off his game by a lot, but I think -- personally, I think it’s going to be Sleepy Joe.

         Q    Mr. President, do you think you’re alienating voters when you tweet at the Squad and at Congressman Cummings?

         THE PRESIDENT:  No, I think I’m helping myself because I’m pointing out the tremendous corruption that’s taken place in Baltimore and other Democratic-run cities.  All you have to do is look at the past mayors in Baltimore -- see what happened.  No, I think I’m helping myself.

    And I’ll tell you what: The White House and myself -- in letters and emails and phone calls -- have received more phone calls than I think on any other subject, of people from Baltimore and other cities corruptly run by Democrats, thanking me for getting involved.  Those people are living in hell in Baltimore.  They’re largely African American.  We have a large African American population and they really appreciate what I’m doing and they've let me know it.  They really appreciate it.

    And, by the way, the numbers just came out.  Unemployment for African Americans is the lowest it's been.  The best numbers -- meaning, in the history of our country.  The lowest in the history of our country.

         But people have called from Baltimore thanking me so much, because all that money that’s been spent over 20 years has been stolen and wasted by people like Elijah Cummings.

         Q    Do you want a free trade agreement with Brazil?

         THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I have a great relationship with Brazil.  I have a fantastic relationship with your President.  And he's a great gentleman.  He was here, as you know.  In fact, they say the “Trump of Brazil."  I like that.  That’s a compliment.

    And, by the way, I think he's doing a great job.  It's a tough job, but I think your President is doing a fantastic job.  He's a wonderful man with a wonderful family.

         Q    And you will discuss free trade agreement?

         THE PRESIDENT:  Yeah, we're going to work on a free trade agreement with Brazil.  Brazil is a big trading partner.  They charge us a lot of tariffs, but other than that we love the relationship.

         Q    Are you concerned about the health of Russian opposition leader --

    THE PRESIDENT:  The what?

    Q    The Russian opposition leader, Alexei Navalny, who apparently might've been poisoned while in prison.  Have you heard about that?

         THE PRESIDENT:  I don’t -- I've heard about it.  I don’t know about it, but I'll find out about it.  This is new.  I heard about it last night.

         Q    Are you concerned more about the Ratcliffe nomination? You have Democrats and Republicans who say a Trump loyalist should not be in a DNI position.

         THE PRESIDENT:  Well, John Ratcliffe is a brilliant man.  He is a wonderful person.  I spoke to him long before about this -- long before, months ago.  I spoke to him long before the Mueller fiasco.  That was a fiasco.  I think probably nobody in the history of Capitol Hill has embarrassed themselves like what Mueller did to himself and to the Democrats.

         But John Ratcliffe -- I spoke to him about this for a long time.  He's a very talented guy.  He's a strong man.  It's what we need in that position.

         Q    More and more people are calling you “racist.”  Does that bother you?

         THE PRESIDENT:  I am the least racist person there is anywhere in the world.  When con men -- who I've known almost -- you know, almost all my business life, because I had to deal with him, unfortunately, in New York.  But I got along with him -- Al Sharpton.  Now, he's a racist.  He's a racist.  But when people -- when people --

         Q    Racist against who?

         THE PRESIDENT:  Let me explain it to you.  What I've done for African Americans in two and a half years, no President has been able to do anything like it.  Unemployment at the lowest level in the history of our country for African Americans -- nobody can beat that.  You look at poverty levels, they're doing better than they've ever done before.  So many things: Opportunity Zones, criminal justice reform.  President Obama couldn’t get it done.  It was done.

    Really, the biggest beneficiary, probably, is African Americans.  I got criminal justice reform done.  President Obama couldn’t get it done.  No other President was able to get it done.  What I’ve done for African Americans, no President, I would say, has done.

         Now, I'll say this: They are so happy -- because I get the calls.  They are so happy at what I have been able to do in Baltimore and other Democratic-run, corrupt cities.  The money has been stolen -- what they’ve done.  It's been wasted and it's been stolen -- billions and billions of dollars.  And the African American community is so thankful.  They've called me and they said, “Finally, somebody is telling the truth.”

         Q    Mr. President, do you think there will be a trade deal with China before November of 2020?

         THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I think the biggest problem to a trade deal is China would love to wait and just hope -- they hope it's not going to happen.  I hope.  But they would just love if I got defeated so they could deal with somebody like Elizabeth Warren or Sleepy Joe Biden or any of these people because then they'd be allowed and able to continue to rip off our country like they've been doing for the last 30 years.

    China has been taking out hundreds of billions of dollars a year with our country.  And now what I've done with the tariffs is -- number one, they had the worst year they've had in 27 years, yesterday -- the Wall Street Journal.  The worst year in 27 years.  Companies are leaving China by the thousands, and their prices are coming down.

    And I will tell you this: China is dying to make a deal with me.  But whether or not I'll do it -- it's up to me; it's not up to them.

    Q    What can you get China to give you this week?  Just this week, what do you think you can get China to give you in the negotiations?

    THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I think China is willing to give up a lot.  But I -- that doesn’t mean I'm willing to accept it.  I think if China had their wish, they'd wait until after the election, they'll pray that Trump loses, and then they'll make a deal with a stiff -- somebody that doesn’t know what they're doing -- like Obama and Biden, like all of the Presidents before.  Because what they've done is they've just picked our pockets as a nation.  That’s not happening with Trump.

    Q    On Virginia -- the black Virginia lawmakers are boycotting your event today.

    THE PRESIDENT:  That’s okay.

    Q    What do you say to them?  I mean, they're offended by your remarks.

    THE PRESIDENT:  Well, I think if that’s the case, I'd be shocked.  But if that’s the case, they're fighting against their people because the African American people have been calling the White House.  They have never been so happy as what a President has done.  Not only the lowest unemployment in history for African Americans; not only Opportunity Zones for -- really, the biggest beneficiary are the inner cities; and not only criminal justice reform.  But they're so happy that I pointed out the corrupt politics of Baltimore.  It's filthy dirty.  It's so horrible.  And they are happy as hell.

    So, you may have a couple of politicians boycott, but it's all a fix.  It's all a fix.  The fact is African American people love the job I'm doing because I'm working for them.  I'm not working for the politicians.

    Q    Mr. President, do you believe that congressional oversight, is (inaudible), in your case?

    THE PRESIDENT:  Oh, absolutely.  It's -- what he should do -- what Elijah Cummings should do is he should take his Oversight Committee, bring them down to Baltimore, and invest all of it, and really study the billions and billions of dollars that’s been stolen.  It's been wasted; it's been stolen.  They ought to take that beautiful waste of an oversight committee, go down to Baltimore and other Democratic-run cities, and take a look.  See if you can find the billions that have been stolen.

    Q    Is your goal in North Korea simply containment -- just a status quo?

    THE PRESIDENT:  My relationship with Kim Jong Un is a very good one, as I'm sure you've seen.

    We'll see what happens.  I can't tell you what's going to happen.  I know one thing: that if my opponent was President -- if she won -- you would be in a major war right now with North Korea.  And we are nowhere close.

    So we'll see.  I have a good relationship with him.  I like him; he likes me.  We'll see what happens.

    Q    Mr. President, are you willing to visit Baltimore to go see -- are you willing to visit Baltimore and go tour it today?

    THE PRESIDENT:  At the right time, I'll visit.

    But the people of Baltimore are very thankful -- they have let us know by the thousands of people -- because of the fact that finally somebody is pointing out how corrupt Baltimore is, how billions and billions of dollars have been stolen.  And the ones that like it the best -- what I'm doing -- are African American voters.  Those are the ones.

    Thank you.

                             END                 9:29 A.M. EDT