Trump On The Defensive With Iran, Child Migrants, Foreign Dirt During NBC Interview

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NBC’s Chuck Todd on Sunday aired his pre-taped interview with President Donald Trump, during which the President was confronted with the child migrant centers, his administration’s arms deal with Saudi Arabia, his previous comments about accepting dirt from foreign governments, and other controversies.

John Bolton Isn’t Pushing Me To Go To War With Iran

Trump denied that National Security adviser John Bolton is trying to get him to escalate tensions with Iran to the point of military conflict.

He told Todd that he has both doves and hawks in his administration, and that National Security adviser John Bolton is “absolutely a hawk.”

“If it was up to him, he would take on the world at one time, okay?” Trump said. “But that doesn’t matter because I want both sides.”

Bad Conditions At Child Migrant Detention Centers Are Obama And Dems’ Fault

When asked about the unsanitary conditions migrant kids are forced to live under at the border detention centers, Trump put the blame squarely on his predecessor and Democratic lawmakers.

“We’re doing a fantastic job under the circumstances,” Trump said. “The Democrats aren’t even approving giving us money. Where is the money? You know what, the Democrats are holding up the humanitarian aid.”

The president also claimed that Barack Obama “built the cages,” which is true. However, his other claim that Obama was behind family separation is false.

Though he denied using the kids as political leverage, Trump said the situation at the centers would be fixed “immediately” if Democrats passed more restrictions on migration.

“If the Democrats would change the asylum laws and the loopholes, which they refuse to do because they think it’s good politics, everything would be solved immediately,” Trump said. “But they refuse to do it.”

Arms Deal With Saudi Arabia Is Good Because U.S. Gets Money

Despite the rampant human rights abuses at the hands of the Saudi government, including the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Trump argued that the U.S. still needs to continue its billion-dollar arms deal with Saudi Arabia because it generates revenue.

“Saudi Arabia is a big buyer of American product,” Trump said. “That means something to me. It’s a big producer of jobs.”

Despite bipartisan opposition to the arms deal that has partially contributed to Saudi Arabia’s brutal treatment of Yemen, the Trump administration has circumvented Congress to go through with the deal anyway.

Todd asked the President if he’ll continue overlooking Saudi Arabia’s actions as long as they keep buying weapons from the U.S.

“No, but I’m not like a fool that says we don’t want to do business with them,” Trump responded. “And by the way, if they don’t do business with us, you know what they do? They’ll do business with the Russians or with the Chinese.”

I Wouldn’t Have Used Wikileaks Info If I’d Known It Was Stolen

When Todd asked Trump if he regrets accepting hacked Wikileaks documents in 2016 that were later confirmed to be stolen material from the Russian government, Trump said he “wouldn’t have” done it despite directly telling Russia to get Hillary Clinton’s emails during a 2016 campaign rally.

Trump said he was merely “joking” and that he doesn’t “want anything bad to happen to our country.”

The President also defended his comment about accepting damaging information on a political rival from foreign countries, saying that it was “fake news.”

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