Trump Went On A Lot Of Strange Tangents During His Presser On Environmental Policies

WASHINGTON, DC Ð JANUARY 9: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks  during an event to unveil significant changes to the National Environmental Policy Act, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House on January 9, 2020 in Washington, DC. The changes to the nationÕs landmark environmental law would make it easier for federal agencies to approve infrastructure projects without considering climate change. President Trump also took several questions from reporters, including questions of Iran and impeachment. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC JANUARY 9: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during an event to unveil significant changes to the National Environmental Policy Act, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House on January 9, 2020 in Was... WASHINGTON, DC JANUARY 9: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during an event to unveil significant changes to the National Environmental Policy Act, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House on January 9, 2020 in Washington, DC. The changes to the nations landmark environmental law would make it easier for federal agencies to approve infrastructure projects without considering climate change. President Trump also took several questions from reporters, including questions of Iran and impeachment. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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January 9, 2020 1:18 p.m.

So much for staying on message.

During his press conference announcing new environmental regulation policies Thursday, President Trump seemed to be in a particularly bizarre mood, referring to a “rough neighborhood” around Tehran and at one point talking about the “YMCA” song.

Twitter speculated about the President’s appearance while he spoke at length about a variety of topics unrelated to the matter at hand. When he was asked about what happened to the Ukrainian plane that crashed outside Tehran this week — killing all 176 people on board — Trump didn’t hide the fact that he doesn’t buy the belief that the plane suffered a mechanical issue.

“Well, I have my suspicions,” he said when asked about the flight, just minutes before multiple credible news outlets reported that American officials believe the flight was downed by an Iranian missile. 

I don’t want to say that, because other people have their suspicions also. It’s a tragic thing when I see that. It’s a tragic thing. But somebody could have made a mistake on the other side, could have made a mistake,” he said. “It was flying in — not in our system, it has nothing to do with us. It was flying in a pretty rough neighborhood and somebody could have made a mistake. Some people say it was mechanical. I personally don’t think that’s even a question, personally.”

He then went on a near-incoherent rant about his rationale for renaming various global alliances — NATO and the USMCA — claiming he told people they should think of the YMCA song to remember the USMCA abbreviation.

“I actually had a name. NATO, right? And then you have M-E. Middle East. You’d call it NATOME,” he said. “I said, ‘What a beautiful name.’ NATOME. I’m good at names, right? USMCA. Like the song YMCA. Nobody could remember USMCA. I said, ‘think of the song YMCA.’ Now everybody says it.”

Trump eventually got back around to the initial point of the press conference, which was to announce new environmental regulatory rollbacks, all in line with his ongoing approach to environmental policy — to dismantle protections put in place by the Obama administration.

“I’m a big believer in that word, the environment,” he said. “I’m a big believer, but I want clean air and I want clean water, I also want jobs, though. I don’t want to close up our industry because somebody said, you know, ‘you have to go with wind’ or ‘you have to go with something else.’ It’s not going to be able to have the capacity to do what we have to do.”

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