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White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.



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HONORING OUR BELOVED ARETHA FRANKLIN:

THE QUEEN OF SOUL

Photo Source: Lillian Rollins – Facebook.com

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Well, I want to begin today by expressing my condolences to the family of a person I knew well — she worked for me on numerous occasions; she was terrific — Aretha Franklin, on her passing. She’s brought joy to millions of lives, and her extraordinary legacy will thrive and inspire many generations to come.

She was given a great gift from God: her voice. And she used it well. People loved Aretha. She was a special woman. So I just want to pass on my warmest, best wishes and sympathies to her family.

 

Sheku Kanneh-Mason, 19,

Video Source: CBC public television of Canada


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____________________
The White House
Thursday, August 16, 2018

 

HONORING OUR BELOVED ARETHA FRANKLIN

THE QUEEN OF SOUL

 

Aretha Franklin: The Queen of Soul

By Karen Ann Carr

 

 

Photo Source: Lillian Rollins – Facebook.com

A mother, a daughter, an American Presidential Medal of Freedom and Kennedy Center Honoree, and an advocate for the civil rights movement leaves us.

Aretha Louise Franklin was born in Memphis, Tennessee, on the 25 of March, 1942. She was the daughter of Barbara Franklin and C.L. Franklin, a prominent Baptist minister and accomplished nationally known gospel singer.

Aretha grow up largely without her mother. Her father’s serial infidelities finally saw the break-up of her parents’ marriage. Her mother left the family home and moved to Buffalo, New York, where she died from a heart attack aged 34, four years later. Aretha was 6 when her mother left the family in 1948.

At the age of six Aretha and her family had moved to Detroit. There the young Franklin learned to play the piano and began singing in her father’s church. Aretha was raised mostly in Detroit, by her father, C.L. Franklin. Franklin began recording gospel music at age 14. She had a second child, Edward, when she was 16, but was able to maintain her singing career when her grandmother offered to raise the two boys.

By that time Aretha’s talent was reaching a wider audience. Producer Berry Gordy tried to sign Aretha to his new Motown record label, but her father C.L. Franklin turned down the offer. The young Franklin came into contact with a number of musicians, including Smokey Robinson and Sam Cooke.

Sam Cooke tried to persuade her to sign with his label, RCA. But she had already been spotted by one of Columbia’s talent scouts, and that was the label on which she first entered the R&B charts in 1960 with Today I Sing the Blues.

Her father became a respected figure among Detroit’s black community, and his church a centre for gospel music. Encouraged by her father Aretha made her first recording, the album Songs of Faith. When she was just 14, Aretha had given birth to her first son, Clarence.

When asked, about the toughest decision she ever had to make, Franklin told Ebony, “It was when my dad was in the hospital.” C.L. Franklin was shot in his home by burglars in 1979 and lived for five years in a semi-coma before dying.

Franklin’s lows, mental strength and emotion fueled her music.

Photo Source: Lillian Rollins – Facebook.com

Franklin was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George W. Bush in 2005. In 1986, her voice was declared a national resource by the Michigan Legislature. She even had an asteroid named for her.

Photo Source: Lillian Rollins – Facebook.com

Her final album, “A Brand New Me,” paired Franklin’s original recordings of some of her greatest hits with modern musical arrangements from London’s Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.


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____________________
The White House
Thursday, August 16, 2018

 

President Donald J. Trump On Aretha Franklin

President Donald J. Trump prays at a Cabinet Meeting in the White House Cabinet Room on Thursday, August 16, 2018 at 11:43 AM EDT, Washington DC, U.S.A.

 

 

President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

WASHINGTON DC – President Donald J. Trump departs the White House en route to Joint Base Andrews from the White House South Lawn at 10:30 AM, Friday morning. President trump will arrive at Joint Base Andrews in Prince Georges, Maryland and depart the Washington, DC region en route to West Hampton Beach, New York. President Trump is scheduled for an 11:50AM arrival at Francis S. Gabreski Airport of West Hampton Beach, New York. President Trump then departs West Hampton Beach, New York en route to a Southampton, New York private residence. At 1:00 PM, President Trump will participate in a roundtable with supporters and present remarks at a 1:30 luncheon at Southampton, New York. President Trump then departs Southampton, New York at 2:05PM en route to West Hampton Beach, New York. President trump is scheduled to hen arrive at the Francis S. Gabreski Airport of West Hampton Beach, New York and departs en route to Morristown, New Jersey. President Trump then departs Morristown, New Jersey en route to Bedminster, New Jersey.

 

President Donald J. Trump

at a Cabinet Meeting

White House Cabinet Room

11:43 A.M. EDT

 

THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA DONALD J. TRUMP: “Hello, everybody. Thank you very much for being here. I think we’ll start with Secretary Pompeo saying a prayer.

Mike.”

President Donald J. Trump prays at a Cabinet Meeting in the White House Cabinet Room on Thursday, August 16, 2018 at 11:43 AM EDT, Washington DC, U.S.A.

SECRETARY POMPEO: “Thank you, Mr. President. So I’m going to read a prayer that is from a — long ago in my history. It’s called the “Cadet Prayer.” You see this little beat-up little book? Every cadet gets one. And if you’ll bow your heads, I’ll do the prayer.

 

“O God, our Father, Thou Searcher of Men’s hearts, help us to draw near to Thee in sincerity and truth. May our religion be filled with gladness and may our worship of Thee be natural.

Strengthen and increase our admiration for honest dealing and clean thinking, and suffer not our hatred of hypocrisy and pretense ever to diminish…Make us to choose the harder right instead of the easier wrong, and never to be content with a half-truth when the whole can be won. Endow us with courage that is born of loyalty to all that is noble and worthy, that scorns to compromise with vice and injustice and knows no fear when truth and right are in jeopardy…Help us to maintain the honor of the [United States] untarnished and unsullied and to show forth in our lives the ideals of [America] in doing our duty to Thee and to our [nation]. All of which we ask in the name of [our] Great Friend and Master of [men]. Amen.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Thank you. Thank you for doing a great job too.”

 

SECRETARY POMPEO: Thank you, sir.

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Well, I want to begin today by expressing my condolences to the family of a person I knew well — she worked for me on numerous occasions; she was terrific — Aretha Franklin, on her passing. She’s brought joy to millions of lives, and her extraordinary legacy will thrive and inspire many generations to come.

She was given a great gift from God: her voice. And she used it well. People loved Aretha. She was a special woman. So I just want to pass on my warmest, best wishes and sympathies to her family.

We meet at a time of great opportunity for our nation. Our economy is doing better than it ever has before. It was going in the wrong direction when we came onboard, and now it’s going better than ever before.

We’ve created nearly 4 million new jobs since the election, which is an unthinkable number. Nobody would have said that was possible. It’s going to go up very substantially from there.

The African American, Hispanic American, and Asian American unemployment rates have all reached their lowest levels in recorded history. And we’re creating manufacturing jobs at the fastest pace in memory. Nobody has any numbers where it’s anywhere close to what we’re doing.

And if you remember, during the campaign, everybody said that it was impossible to create manufacturing jobs.

The past administration — and I won’t say who, but I think you know — made the statement that we’re not going to have any manufacturing jobs. And we’re doing them by the hundreds of thousands.

Companies are moving back into the United States. That means jobs; it means production; it means taxes. And, really, things are great.

Yesterday, Larry Kudlow, a man I respected for many years — that voice, that beautiful voice; I’ve heard it so many years, talking about financial — and he came into my office and he made a statement that was something that was very beautiful, and I’d like to maybe ask him to say a little bit about what he told me last night.

Larry?

 

KUDLOW: Yes, sir. Thank you. Appreciate it. Hi, everybody.

 

So, look, it’s fairly simple thought — most good things are. But I’m looking at the media, and watching various TV and other outlets talk about stuff that baffles me, that’s outside my lane.

Here’s the key point I made to the President yesterday and I make it to you today, and I hope we all we keep making it: By far — by far — the single biggest event, be it political or otherwise, this year is an economic boom that most people thought would be impossible to generate. Not a rise, not a blip — a genuine economic boom.

And everybody wrote us off, going back to the campaign, and as it was put into place last year, and now the follow through this year. And the numbers are coming in; they just keep coming in, which is one of the reasons I tried to get a hold of the President on this. I mean, we’ve got 3.1 percent GDP in the first half of the year; 4.1 in the second quarter. The Atlanta Fed is predicting 4.3 in the third quarter. I think it’s a very realistic estimate.

Here’s the point: Anybody who does political forecasting using the economy always focuses on a number — hang with me — real disposable income. Just think of it as after-tax pay — “take-home pay,” Ronald Reagan used to say (inaudible).

So that measure is growing at 3.1 percent the last 12 months. When we came to office, it was less than 1 percent on a 12-month basis. It has jumped. So people say only a few are benefitting. Not true. This is a measure of the entire economy. Everyone’s wages and salaries, adjusted for taxes and adjusted for inflation, is growing at 3 percent. It’s a tremendous number. And there’s no signs that’s abating.

Confidence — confidence numbers: Large businesses, small businesses, and consumer confidence numbers are at or near record highs, and, from the latest surveys, are continuing to rise. There’s no letup in the increase. And confidence is everything. Confidence is everything. And I can run down the litany — I’m not going to take up your time. I’m just saying.

The really wonderful part of the story for me — and, you know, I get off on this stuff, I understand that — but it’s very important for the country, Americans, the workforce. The new numbers coming in — retail sales, industrial production, low inflation, a rock-steady dollar. Trillions of dollars of capital from all over the world is coming into the United States because our economy, our investors, our workforce are crushing it right now. We are crushing it.

And people say this is not sustainable, it’s a one-quarter blip. It’s just nonsense, absolute nonsense. Any business economist worth his or her salt would look at these trends and tell you we’re going for a while. We have low inventories. We have rising business investment. Productivity is showing the first lift in years; the last number was 1.3 percent for the year. We haven’t seen that in a long time. Businesses are investing. Capital goods is booming. This is a complete turnaround. It’s like, if you give Americans some freedom to run, they will run. All right?

And presidential policy — low tax rates, roll back regulations, open up energy, trade reforms to help the American workforce and the employers — across the board, we’re not punishing success; we’re rewarding success. We’re not against businesses; we are for businesses. And we have a President who, in my words, was telling folks to take a rip at the ball, and they’re doing it.

And again, people may disagree with me, but I’m saying, this — we are just in the early stages. We’re in the early innings here. We never had a cap goods boom. We’re now starting. And we’ve never seen income numbers like this — again, after tax, after inflation.

Policies matter. I mean, America’s free market economy — ordinary people run our economy, entrepreneurs. That’s the beauty of it. But policies matter. And when you change that switch, as President Trump has changed that switch, things are happening that a handful of us thought might happen, but I would not say it was widespread.

So I’ll just end, sir. And I appreciate the time very much. The single biggest story this year is an economic boom that is durable and lasting, and that most people thought was impossible. And they were wrong. And you were right, sir.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Thank you, Larry, very much. Larry, I should end on that. This is always a mistake. (Laughter.) Could I ask you one question? China. As you know, China was, for many years — as long as anybody up here, including the media, could remember — China was on a one-way road to becoming the biggest economy and all of that. And we were just going to be left behind.

I’d like you to say how are we doing versus China, and how is China doing. We want them to do well, frankly. And President Xi is a friend of mine. I want them to do well. But how are we doing versus China? How is China doing?”

 

KUDLOW: “You know, sir, the latest batch of numbers from China, spanning a good six months now, nine months — their economy is just heading south. Retail sales, business — business investment is collapsing in China, according to the numbers. Industrial production has fallen and now is plateauing at a low level. People are selling the currency; there may be some manipulation. But mostly, I think investors are moving out of China because they don’t like the economy, and they’re coming to the USA because they like our economy.

I’m not a China expert, although I’m boning up as fast as I can. I will just say, right now, their economy looks terrible.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Okay, thank you. Thank you very much, Larry.”

 

KUDLOW: “Thank you, sir.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “I’d like to ask Ryan Zinke, Secretary, who actually I watched this morning. He was giving a rundown on the horrible fires that are taking place mostly in California. And I thought what he said was so true and, actually, rather incredible — people don’t hear it — they don’t hear it like it is. There are things you can do about those fires before they start, and you wouldn’t have nearly the damage and the problems.

We’re spending a fortune in California because of poor maintenance and because, frankly, they’re sending a lot of water out to the Pacific to protect the smelt. And, by the way, it’s not working. The smelt is not doing well. But we’re sending millions and millions of gallons, right out into the Pacific Ocean, of beautiful, clean water coming up from the north — or coming down from the north.

And I thought Ryan was great this morning. So before we start on a couple of other things we’ll be discussing today, including, very importantly, schools and education, I would ask you to give maybe a little recap of what you said this morning on television.”

 

SECRETARY ZINKE: “Well, thank you, Mr. President. And first, our firefighters — which there are 30,000 of them — are doing spectacular things. We’ve had six deaths related. And we forget that firefighters, while they’re in the frontline, their homes and families are in jeopardy, and our hearts and prayers need to be with our frontline firefighters that are out there every day.

It is a matter of gross mismanagement; there is no question. The fuel loads are up. The density of our forests is historical. We have dead and dying timber. And if you don’t believe me, believe your own eyes: Go out and take a look at our forests. Take a drive out there and look at the dead and dying timber. It’s been a gross mismanagement for decades. But we’re burning our forests, we’re destroying our habitats, and we’re destroying our communities and neighborhoods by these catastrophic fires of two-, three-hundred-thousand acres.

Thus far, there’s 5.7 million acres of our public lands that have been destroyed at a cost of about $3 billion this fiscal year. Americans deserve to go out and recreate rather than evacuate. So we went out — Secretary Perdue and I went out to California. We are committed to reestablishing sound science, best practices for the greatest good for all of us.

But sound active management, Mr. President, is the path that you have laid. And it’s clear: This is unacceptable that year after year we’re watching our forests burn, our habitat destroyed, and our communities devastated. And it is absolutely preventable. And public lands are for everybody to enjoy and not just held hostage by these special interest groups.

Mr. President.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “And, Ryan, you’re saying it’s not a global warming thing, it’s a management situation. And one of the elements that he talked about was the fact we have fallen trees. And instead of removing those fallen trees — which get to be extremely combustible — instead of removing them — gently removing them, beautifully removing them — we leave them to burn and, actually, in many cases, catch fire much easier than a healthy tree, a healthy-growing tree.

Could you just discuss that for a second?”

 

SECRETARY ZINKE: “Well, Mr. President, we import lumber in this country, and yet there are billions of board feet that are on the forest floor rotting. Rotting. And whether you’re a global warmist advocate or denier, it doesn’t make a difference when you have rotting timber, when housing prices are going up, when a lot of Americans are right at that border of affording a house, and yet we are wasting billions of board feet for not being able to bring them to a local lumber mill. It is unconscionable that we would do that to our citizens.

And so, Mr. President, we are actively engaged. We have signed secretarial orders. Secretary Perdue and I went out to California. We are joined at the hip to make sure we actively manage our forest, remove the dead and dying timber, replant diversity of species. And on the salvage operations — 5.7 million acres — a lot of that can be salvaged if we get to it in the first year. And we’re going to do it, Mr. President.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “And just to add, just to conclude, especially when Canada is charging us a lot of money to bring their timber down into our country. It’s so ridiculous. Here we have it. We’re not even talking about cutting down trees, which in certain areas we can do. We’re talking about lying on the floor, creating a tremendous hazard and a tremendous fire hazard and death trap.

So I thought they were great points. Thank you very much, Ryan. Appreciate it.

We’re also working to reduce violent crime and to help our great law enforcement, including the very brave men and women of ICE, who have been absolutely abused. They are tremendous people. They’re brave. They’re strong. They’re tough. And they’re good. They’re good people.

And you think you’re going to send just regular people in to take care of MS-13 and these gangs? Not going to happen.

So I just want to thank ICE and everybody in law enforcement for the incredible job they’ve done and are doing.

Our families prepare, and they are in the process of preparing for the new school year. My administration is working closely with state and local authorities to protect our schools and to protect our children. Our hearts continue to grieve for the victims of the horrific shootings at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida that we all know too well about what they went through. Incredible people. And Santa Fe High School in Texas — same thing.

In March, I established the Federal Commission on School Safety to address the tragedy of violence in our classrooms. Since that time, the commission has held nearly a dozen public meetings and listening sessions with educators, administrators, law enforcement, state and local leaders, survivors, and families generally.

We’ve signed two critical forms and — reforms into law. One is STOP School Violence Act. It’s a very important thing. People said we probably wouldn’t be able to get it through. We got it through. It provides grants to schools to improve safety. And the Fix NICS Act, which strengthens background checks for firearms purchases. It very much strengthens. A lot of people didn’t want to report on that because probably it was too good to report about it. It’s very important thing. It strengthens that background checks for firearm purchases.

Today, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and others, and various commission leaders, will provide an update on their work. We’re going to have a lot of people in this room involved, even people that aren’t involved that much with education. But they’re very smart people sitting around this wonderful desk, or table.

Secretary Azar, Nielsen, and Sessions — a lot of other people are being — joining. A lot of people have asked me if they could join. Ben — Ben Carson is one. A lot of people have asked me if they could join. They consider the schools to be so important in education, and now so important in safety.

We want to harden our schools against attack –improving communications between law enforcement, school officials, mental health professionals, and counselors; training school personnel so they better protect our students, including allowing qualified personnel to be armed.

As you know, in Florida, they went in with a bill that didn’t have that, and they came out with a bill where the legislature wanted it. So that’s up to the community, not up to the federal government. That’s up to the community.

Improving our early warning system to make sure schools, families, and law enforcement can identify red flags and respond quickly. We want a very rapid response. Some of the response has been incredible, and some of the response has not been good, obviously. You saw that very well. And, frankly, you reported it very well.

We want to strengthen our mental health laws and procedures. So important. I think it’s probably the most underrated element of what we’re doing, but it might be — it might be the most important. Mental health — the laws and procedures.

Keeping guns — we want to keep them out of the hands of those who pose a threat to themselves and to, more importantly, frankly, others. And we want to foster a culture that celebrates life, and forms real and meaningful human connection so that we can see not only in terms of education, but we can see if something is going wrong with somebody, we can do something about it.

In Florida, there were a lot of red flags. I guess they said there were 28 to 38 red flags, where everybody knew this was a sick person. And nobody did anything about it. And that’s what you end up with.

So I look forward to today’s discussion. And we will make our schools not only very safe — I think they’re already safe — but we’re going to have the finest school system anywhere. So I want to thank you. Thank you all for being here.

Betsy, maybe we could start with you. And we’ll go over your little section, and then we’ll hear from Secretary Azar, Attorney General Sessions, and a couple of others.

If you’d like, you could stay. Or if you’d like, you can also leave. (Laughter.) Don’t forget: freedom of the press. (Laughter.)

Go ahead.

 

SECRETARY DEVOS: “Well, thank you, Mr. President. Mr. President, after the tragedy in Parkland, Florida, you took swift action. No parent should fear for their child’s life when they go to school. And no student, no teacher should ever have to worry about their safety at school.

You convened students, families, and educators to have an honest dialogue. You pressed Congress to pass Fix NICS and the STOP School Violence Acts. You called governors, state and local leaders to action. You asked me to travel to Parkland to visit with students and teachers. And, Mr. President, you traveled to Texas in May to meet with parents, families, and survivors of the shooting at the Santa Fe high school.

We’ve suffered too many heartbreaking reminders that our nation must come together to address the underlying issues that foster a culture of violence. And you rightly insisted, from day one, that we wouldn’t keep our children safe by looking only at any one particular piece of this much larger problem.

When you asked me to chair the Federal Commission on School Safety, you directed us to explore a range of issues, including mental health treatment, social-emotional learning, the difference that armed school resource officers make on a daily basis, the impact of violent entertainment on the development of young children, the gaps or failures among local officials when they’re aware of a troubled minor and fail to act, along with a number of other issues.

So we set out to gain input from students, parents, teachers, school safety personnel, administrators, law enforcement officials, state and local leaders, mental health professionals, school counselors, anyone and everyone who’s focused on identifying and elevating solutions.

I invite my colleagues to look at the slides included in your books, which are a small insight into the commission’s information-gathering process.

I’ve been very pleased to work with my fellow commission members — Attorney General Sessions, Secretary Azar, and Secretary Nielsen to do exactly that: to learn from those closest to students. Our aim isn’t to impose a one-size-fits-all solution for everyone, everywhere. The primary responsibility for the physical security of schools and the safety of their students naturally rests with states and local communities.

And it’s clear from all of our work thus far that many schools and communities take this responsibility very seriously. Many have employed solutions that uniquely meet their needs and requirements.

It’s also clear that keeping kids safe at school is not a one-time, check-the-box exercise — a safety plan you implement once and call it good. It requires a posture of perpetual preparedness. And what’s necessary and right for a school with 50 students in Cheyenne is very different than what’s necessary and right for a school in Chicago.

Let me briefly tell you about the meetings the Department of Education has specifically led. In May, I met with survivors and family members affected by past shootings — individuals from Columbine, Virginia Tech, Sandy Hook, and also from Parkland. In addition, we heard from authors of the reports written in the aftermath of those shootings.

Later in May, we visited Hebron-Harman Elementary School in Maryland. Hebron-Harman’s district uses a flexible framework of positive behavior interventions and support, modeling one way schools can help create a strong school climate. This approach brings to mind the First Lady’s strong leadership on wellbeing and social-emotional learning through her BE BEST initiative.

And then here at the White House, in June, we met to hear some practical strategies that schools could use to combat negative effects of violent entertainment, media, and cyberbullying. A key takeaway: Culture and climate really matter in schools.

I was struck and impressed by the obvious passion of Paul Gausman, a superintendent from Iowa. It takes strong leadership to create a positive culture, and that flows from empowered educators who know their students well.

Each of my fellow commissioners have led other field and commission meetings during the course of our work. So now I’d like to ask Secretary Azar to talk about the work of HHS in the context of the commission.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Thank you, Betsy.”

 

SECRETARY AZAR: “Well, Mr. President, thank you for the opportunity to be on the School Safety Commission. And I’d like to thank Secretary DeVos for her tremendous and tireless leadership of the commission, and fellow commissioners — the Attorney General and Secretary Nielsen.

We at HHS have focused on the really critical role you pointed out of mental health. Mental health is so central to these issues of school violence and safety. And so that’s been our area of focus.

I think it’s very important to remember, though, that we not stigmatize those with mental illness. Most crimes of violence are not committed by those with serious mental illness. Those with serious mental illness are actually more likely than others to be victims of crimes of violence. And those who are receiving treatment for serious mental illness are no greater threat than any other individual for committing a crime of violence. That’s just important that we remember as we talk about these important issues.

There are really three key mental health issues that we’ve identified through our work on the commission: access, privacy, and civil commitment.

Access: How do expand access to mental health services overall for children and others? Second, how do we integrate that mental health service into our schools, delivering that service where the kids feel most comfortable and where they can get it best, and where the stigma can be the least? How do we look at the appropriate use of different psychotropic medicines — appropriate and inappropriate use? We studied that carefully.

Our privacy rules in the federal government: Where do our privacy rules get in the way of kids getting care? Where do they get in the way of teachers and administrators reporting children who need help? Where do they get in the way of family members getting the care that their other family members need?

And then, finally, understanding how civil commitment may help address serious mental illness. We studied these issues in our meetings that we hosted here in Washington, as well as an excellent field visit that we took to a middle school in Wisconsin.

On access, we learned how integrating services in the schools is ideal; it can really decrease stigma and meet the kids where they are. We learned that one in five youth suffer from some form of mental disorder, but half of them are not getting treatment for it. We learned that school-based care leads to improved grades, better attendance, health, and mental health care and outcomes. We learned that medications are over-utilized and under-utilized, depending on the circumstance. And we learned that we need much more research on these medications and their use in a youth population.

On privacy, we learned how misunderstood the rules are, and how often over-counseled and over-interpreted those rules are. We learned the barriers of families getting care for their kids and family members treatment that they need. And we also see how — we saw, very importantly, how this issue comes up in the issue of opioids and substance-use disorder — how it’s preventing family members from getting their other family members treatment.

So we’re looking at any needed changes that we can take — and that will be in the report — better training, as well as changes to our rules, to help schools, families, and healthcare providers.

We got to see great work in local communities. The school — this middle school we went to in Adams County, in Wisconsin, was just tremendous. Integrated mental health services in the schools. They train their teachers to recognize mental health issues. And they just built a supportive, happy environment that any one of us would be delighted to send our children into — in an area that, frankly, suffers from tremendous poverty, and yet they still were able to deliver that.

This was done through funding by HHS, the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Agency, in close partnership with the governor in the state of Wisconsin. It shows that it can be done. This can be solved. Seventy-five percent of serious mental illness starts by the age of 25, so we’ve got to get these kids in middle school, in senior high, and in college.

We look forward to highlighting areas that we can improve our delivery, through the work of the commission and our report. And we’re just grateful to the President for his leadership to help our children have a safe, healthy, happy school environment.

Thank you, sir.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Well, thank you very much, and I appreciate it. But I do want you to bring up something that you and I have been working on very hard, and that’s prescription drug prices.

So, as everybody knows, Pfizer, last week, raised substantially the price of their drugs, and I wasn’t happy about it — Novartis, also, and others. And we made some phone calls, and they brought it back down to what the price was. And I think you’re going to see a reduction in drug price. And that’s the first time that’s ever happened, I believe, ever. But I was not happy about it, and it wasn’t great. And we’re working on very much getting rid of the middleman.

Now, could you talk about how we’re reducing drug prices, and how it’s starting to really take effect? And maybe talk about the fact that we appreciate very much what Pfizer and Novartis and the others did. We really do; we really appreciate it.”

 

SECRETARY AZAR: “That is correct. So just for the media and others, I have said that I have never once had a discussion with President Trump where we have not discussed drug pricing, and we continue batting a thousand here today. He is adamant about bringing drug prices down, and it has come through the hundred days of work that we have gone through since the President released his blueprint on reducing drug prices and putting American patients first.

As the President said, there have been some really significant moves, because the drug companies and others in the system see the writing on the wall. The system is going to change, prices will come down, and they are skating from where the puck is going to be.

We’ve had 15 companies make significant announcements around drug pricing. Pfizer reversed its price increases. Merck announced that it’s going to be decreasing prices. We’ve had several other companies who had told state regulators that they were going to increase prices, and they have now walked back and said they will not follow through on those increases. And we’ve seen over a dozen companies say that they will have no further price increases for the rest of the year.

We’ll be coming out with a report on the hundred days’ progress that we’ve made so far next week, and that will have even more information for you about the historic changes we’re already experiencing in the drug pricing market.

We’ve done some transformative things under the President’s leadership already. For the first time in history, the President is introducing a regime to important drugs from other developed countries that do not violate intellectual property rights in the United States here. So these are products that are not under patent protection, but where the company — the single company — holds that drug in the U.S. and has increased price.

We’re going to let competition come in to ensure patient access and competition here in the United States. For the first time in history, this President has done that.

In addition, for the first time in history, President Trump is bringing negotiation and discounts to our Medicare Part B drug program. That is the drug program where doctors administer the drugs for all of its history. We simply pay sticker price for drugs — no discounting, no rebates, no control.

For the first time ever, we are unleashing our Medicare Advantage plans to negotiate discounting on $12 billion of drugs. And every penny we save is going to be money that the patients save, because we’re mandating that over 50 percent of all savings be passed back to the patient from the work of these insurance companies negotiating against the drug companies.

So everybody is seeing the changes coming. We’ve had historic rates this last month — the highest level of generic drug approval by Commissioner Gottlieb ever in history. We’re increasing competition. We’re increasing the approval of new branded drugs, and bringing new therapies to market.

So it’s not going to change overnight. This is a $400 billion segment of the economy. We are not driving for any kind of cheap gimmicks or quick solutions. We’re doing things the right way; we are structurally rebuilding this entire segment of the economy to lead to enduring, lower prices that are sustainable and support innovation.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Thank you very much. And as you know, the pharmaceutical industry is said, for many years, to have the most powerful lobby. The good news is, I don’t need their money. So we’re doing the right thing.

And, frankly, I think the drug companies, actually, in the long run — I really believe this, Secretary — I think they’re going to benefit also. But the middleman is not going to be benefitting. Somebody and — some very rich people out there that do nothing, make a lot of money. Very rich people. I don’t know who they are; I don’t want to know who they are. But they don’t like me too much right now, I would say. Wouldn’t you say?”

 

SECRETARY AZAR: “You and me. (Laughs.)

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “So, congratulations. Thank you very much. This is — in terms of prescription drugs and drugs, nothing like this has ever happened before in our country. And I will say that the Democrats heard about it. They’re very happy about it, or so they tell me. I’m sure they won’t tell you, but they can’t believe what’s happening. So — because they want to see that too. They want to see drug prices come down. And nobody has ever seen where they raise the prices 10 percent, and the following day they announce that they were just kidding. But that’s what happened.

So thank you very much, Secretary. Fantastic job. You’re doing a fantastic job.

Jeff.”

 

ATTORNEY GENERAL SESSIONS: “Well, thank you. On drugs, you directed us to reduce opioids by 30 percent. We believe that is achievable. We believe there is at least that much abuse in the opioid prescriptions. And DEA just announced today, reducing the number that lawfully can be produced, as we’ve indicted 170 physicians who have been prescribing, unlawfully, to people who are addicted to drugs.

Betsy DeVos has done a great job leading our commission. I’ve attended five — all five of the meetings. We’ve learned a great deal. She is going to lead us to have a report before the deadline — in advance of it. And I think it will definitely help make schools safer.

I would also say that, in addition to those meetings, I met with some 18 law officers, many of whom — some were at Columbine, Aurora, and Parkland — who were there when it happened. They believe that we need to do a better job of sharing information to identify the red flags that you mentioned earlier.

The juvenile courts are totally secret. Police have secrecy rules. Schools have secrecy rules. Mental health people have secrecy rules. Medical professionals have secrecy rules. And we think we can do a better job of identifying our children at risk, children who are suffering, children who may be at risk for suicide, if not violence too. And then create an environment where the teachers and administrators know what’s lawful for them to share, and not be sued for it. I do think we can make progress in that regard.

You also asked us to fix the NICS system. We got legislation — you did — to help that. We are pressing that every day. So more jurisdictions are bringing in — coming into the system and reporting all their convictions. We need to continue to press mental health adjudications. So those need to be in the system too to protect people who are mentally unstable from purchasing a gun, who have declared them unfit.

And we have got two different grant programs — $50 million and $25 million — that will help hire school resource officers who are trained, and also to train teachers, professionals, administrators to carry guns.

Just in addition, I attended a school in Arkansas. They’ve been allowing their administrators to have guns for years. Parents, teachers, people who graduated from the school — all favored that — would not want to change it. It’s just another example that we don’t need to micromanage our schools on how they protect the safety of their children.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Good. Thank you very much. I’d also like to ask you to bring a major lawsuit against the drug companies on opioids. Some states have done it, but I’d like a lawsuit to be brought against these companies that are really sending opioids at a level that it shouldn’t be happening. It’s so highly addictive. People go into a hospital with a broken arm; they come out, they’re a drug addict. They get the arm fixed, but they’re now a drug addict.

And I’d like us to look at some of the litigation that’s already been started with companies. Rather than just joining them, I’d like to bring a federal lawsuit against those companies.

I’d also like to have you take a look at the fentanyl that’s coming out of China and Mexico. And whatever you can do from a legal standpoint — whether it’s litigation, lawsuits, for people and companies. But, in China, you have some pretty big companies sending that garbage and killing our people. It’s almost a form of warfare. And I’d like to do whatever you can do legally to stop it from China and from Mexico. And if you could look into that, I’d appreciate it.”

 

ATTORNEY GENERAL SESSIONS: We absolutely will. We’re returning indictments now against distributors from China. We’ve identified certain companies that are moving drugs from China, fentanyl in particular. We have confronted China about it — Secretary Pompeo has. You have personally raised it with them.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Yep. I have.”

 

ATTORNEY GENERAL SESSIONS: “And we have not achieved as much advantage as we would like. Most of it is going to Mexico, and then crossing the border unlawfully from Mexico. We’re going to work on that.

You’ve made clear you want us to sue and use legal process against drug companies that are abusing the law for some time now. We’ve joined with the states, and we are looking at various different legal avenues to go after abusive companies.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Good. Good. I’d be very, very firm on that, because what’s happening with drugs in this country — and throughout the world, but, in our country, it’s a disgrace, and we can stop it. We can certainly make a big dent.

Thank you very much.”

 

ATTORNEY GENERAL SESSIONS: “We’ve never seen the deaths that we are seeing today. It’s unprecedented in American history.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Right. Thank you very much.

Secretary Nielsen.”

 

SECRETARY NIELSEN: “I’d just like to start by, of course, adding my thanks to the other commission members. We’ve all been working hard and we thank you, sir, for your leadership. This is currently an example where young lives depend on our ability to take bold action. So I’m very confident that the report that Secretary DeVos is pulling together will do just that. And so I look forward, first, to be able to share that with you.

At DHS, most of DHS is involved in this because we do so much on preparedness and working with state and local communities. So we’re bringing all of our best practices to bear to really tailor solutions and offer them up through various guidebooks to the communities.

As Secretary DeVos said, there is one — there is not one size fits all. So we need to work individually with the communities and find what it is that they need.

We’re looking at training and exercises. Exercises, we all know, play a very important part of a community’s ability to be prepared. Practicing does not make perfect but it does make automatic. And that muscle memory is the difference between saving a life and waiting to figure out what it is that you should do in the event of a disaster.

Today, we’re going to have another meeting. I’ll be joined by my commissioners. We’ll look at best practices. We’ll look at active shooter. We’re having some practitioners come. We do this always as a school-based approach. Secretary DeVos has a great slide in our book of all the many, many states that we’ve all interacted with. We’re really trying to get that input from across the — across the nation.

So thank you for your leadership. I think you’ll be very pleased with what we’re able to come up with, working with our communities.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Could you say something that, despite the horrible immigration laws that we have to live with — with catch-and-release and all of the horror show — it’s a horror show. It’s a disgrace, frankly. We’ll get it changed.

But having a lot of problem with the other party. They don’t want to change for, I guess, political reasons; it can’t be common sense. Could you say how we’re doing in terms of — we’re breaking records at the border — law enforcement records. Could you maybe just give a little update on that?”

 

SECRETARY NIELSEN: “Sure. Yeah.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Despite the horrible laws, we’re doing very well.

Please.”

SECRETARY NIELSEN: “We are — in three different ways. In conjunction with our partners at the Department of Justice, continually the headlines show that we interdict more and more drugs at the border each month. And that is great. So every time we have a new record, a couple weeks later we surpass it with the amount of drugs we’re able to interdict.

So we’re using a particular type of technology — advanced technology: nonintrusive inspection at the ports of entry. We also are doing much more on interdicting just border crossers who cross illegally. So you’ve seen the numbers in July go down substantially from the time before.

What’s still difficult, though, are the populations that we are not able to prosecute given a variety of current court cases. So we continue to work with Congress. There has to be consequences. Nothing changes; we know this throughout the legal system. I mean, this is true of any part of the world. If there’s no consequences for breaking the law, unfortunately people will continue to do so.

So we’re working with countries to the south of us to help them understand other options for migrations flows to protect their communities at the beginning of that journey so they don’t pay smugglers. There’s a whole variety of Cabinet members here that are working on the fight against TCOs. We’re having a lot of success against that type of a crime and criminal as well.

So it’s good news. We are doing everything we can within executive power, but we have to get Congress to act.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “We’re setting records at the border with terrible laws. So if we had the right laws, we could really be doing something special. And there are consequences. When people come up — and I’ll say it — when people come up, it’s very tough. It’s very tough for them. And it’s very sad. But we can’t handle it. The country can’t handle it. You know, we’re one country; we cannot handle what’s happening. And nobody could. And we don’t want to have to be able to handle it, frankly. It’s not fair. It’s not fair to our taxpayers, to our workers.

And so we are very, very tough at the border. We’re setting records despite horrible, horrible immigration laws that the Democrats do not want to fix, and I think that’s going to hurt them very badly at the polls come November. That’s my opinion.

So I want to thank you very much.

I’d like to ask, Mike, if you could talk a little bit about North Korea — where we are with North Korea.”

 

SECRETARY POMPEO: “Yes, sir, Mr. President. So we’re now many months with no additional missile tests. Many months with no additional nuclear testing from the North Koreans. We’re continuing to engage in conversation with them about a path forward to a brighter future for the North Koreans.

We have 55 sets of remains that have been returned. The Department of Defense is working on the next work that will hopefully lead to the retain — returns of not dozens, but hundreds of the remains of our soldiers that were killed in North Korea.

 

So continuing to make progress and hoping that we can make a big step here before too long.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “And the relationship seems very good. I think it’s probably hurt a little bit by China because China isn’t really happy with what I’m doing on trade, but we have no other choice as a country. And they understand that. So I think we’re probably being hurt a little bit with respect to North Korea, having to do with China. But really, we have no choice on that. We had to do something.

It was — the money that was being drained out of our country and going to China. We rebuilt China. We rebuilt. Five-hundred billion dollars a year, for years and years and years. And we had to do something about that. They understand that.

In fact, I think they’re in a state of shock that they’ve been able to get away with it for so long — so many decades. So we just have to do something, and we did it.

Could I ask Secretary Mnuchin — Turkey, they have not proven to be a good friend. They have a great Christian pastor there. He’s a very innocent man. I’d like to know — unrelated to the pastor — I just think it’s a terrible thing that they’re holding him. We got somebody out for him. He needed help getting somebody out of someplace; they came out. They want to hold our wonderful pastor. Not fair. Not right.

But unrelated to that, how are you doing with sanctions on Turkey? And as you know, we doubled up the tariffs on steel and aluminum. Aluminum will happen very shortly. How are you doing with sanctions? Please.”

 

SECRETARY MNUCHIN: “Sir, we’re doing well. As you know, we were very clear with our counterparts there — both Secretary Pompeo and myself — on the release of the pastor. We’ve put sanctions on several of their cabinet members. Working with you, we have more that we’re planning to do if they don’t release him quickly.

I’ll also just comment on the rollout of the Iran nuclear sanctions is going extremely well. We’re working closely with Secretary Pompeo. Strongest sanctions in preventing things there.

And continue to be very focused on implementing the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Just rolled out the pass-through regs — lowest rates we’ll have for small business and pass-throughs since the 1930s. And a big part of –“

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Great.”

 

SECRETARY MNUCHIN: “– what Larry Kudlow talked about, in terms of the economic growth.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Great. Good. Thank you. Great job. Thank you very much.

Secretary Wilkie, so we got Choice passed for our vets so our vets don’t have to wait on line for six weeks and end up with a simple condition that’s terminal because they can’t get to a doctor. I’m very proud of Choice, and we’re talking a lot of the things we’ve done for the vets.

But could you give us a little — how are you doing with Choice? You’ve had it now for a couple of months. How is that moving along?”

 

SECRETARY WILKIE: “Sir, it’s moving along well, but I would start with something else. We are experiencing, with the economic boom, lowering rates of vets unemployed. Probably the best trends that we’ve seen in many, many years.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Of vets unemployed. That’s great. That’s great.”

 

SECRETARY WILKIE: “And that is — that is a boon for our warriors across the country.

In terms of the Mission Act, the Director and I — Director Mulvaney and I will be talking about it tomorrow. We have the opportunity to do what has not been done in many years, and that is widen the aperture when it comes to the health choices available to veterans across the country.

No longer in states like Montana, where Secretary Zinke is from, will they have to travel four- or five-hundred miles round trip. They can do this at home. We’re making advances with Mission in the area of telehealth, which is a way to impact the mental health issues that many of our veterans face.

So for the first time, we had a comprehensive and strategic way forward in making the lives of our veterans better. And it is — it’s a wonderful thing.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Thank you very much.”

 

SECRETARY WILKIE: “Thank you.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “I hear you’re doing great. And congratulations.”

SECRETARY WILKIE: ‘Thank you.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Just got through. Just got passed. So congratulations. You are going to be there for a long time, and you’re going to do a fantastic job.

It’s the first time a Secretary has really had a chance to do a fantastic job. Because without Choice, I think it would have been impossible. So we have Choice now, and our vets are taken care of. And just make sure they go see the right doctor. Right? When they need it. Sometimes they won’t need it because you have plenty of great doctors at the VA.

If I could ask Secretary Acosta a little bit about your association healthcare plan, which has been now completed. It’s in service. How are you doing with it?”

 

SECRETARY ACOSTA: “That’s correct, Mr. President. Just in the past week — there were newspaper articles — a number of chambers of commerce around the country have reported that they’ve started these plans. They’re in the process of offering it to their small businesses. You’re seeing chambers in Nevada, in Texas; we’re talking to some in Iowa, up in the Minnesota area as well. Associations here in Washington that represent businesses across the country are looking at them.

Just today, at the Department, is an association representing members of the gig economy that are looking to start these up. And so for a rule that is just weeks old, we’re already seeing implementation and we’re seeing quite a bit of excitement.

The U.S. Chamber had a call with the members’ chambers of commerce. And initially, they weren’t going to do the call because it’s August and things are very quiet, but they decided to do the call anyhow. And they had a near-record number of local chambers call in, onto the call, to learn how they can go about doing this. So there is a quite a bit of energy and excitement.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “That’s fantastic. I appreciate that. And also, Secretary Acosta, you’re moving very nicely on your healthcare plans too.

And one of the big things is the individual mandate is gone. We got rid of that. That was from Obamacare. That was, by far, the most unpopular thing in Obamacare. We actually got rid of Obamacare, except for one vote. But we essentially have — so we’re doing it piecemeal, and it’s going to be gone pretty soon.

So, a fantastic job. I heard great things about the healthcare plan. And a lot of people are signing up; a lot of associations are signing up — far ahead of what we even projected. So that’s good.”

 

SECRETARY ACOSTA: “That’s correct. Yes.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “And maybe I could just — I’ll finish off with Secretary Perdue. The farmers — we love the farmers. And, you know, our farmers are brave and they’re great patriots. And, as you know, China sort of attacked our farmers by trying not to buy from our farmers. They know the farmers like Trump, and I like them. I love them.

And they are, I hear — despite everything — they’re starting to do well. They got out there — like they are. They’re incredible patriots but they’re incredible entrepreneurs. And they’re selling the coin — the corn, and they’re selling the soybean, and they’re selling everything at levels that are soon going to be pretty good levels.

And, you know, our farmers have been hurt for 15 and 20 years. They’ve been — a lot of bad things were happening. And I talk about soybeans, where, prior to my election — if you go five years back, soybean prices were cut by 50 percent. So this was happening long before us. And markets are closed. Canada charges us for dairy products, 275 percent — tariffs of 275 percent — which makes it ridiculous and impossible. But we’re taking care of that situation pretty easily.

But I’d like to just ask, how are the farmers doing? I’m hearing it’s starting to really pick up.”

 

SECRETARY PERDUE: “The farmers are resilient, Mr. President. They embody the American values and sprit of entrepreneurship, risk-taking, hard work, and those American values.

And we’ve talked about before, you call them patriots, and they are. Obviously, there are some price constraints right now, but they believe what you’re doing in China — as you’ve tried to indicate to them — will lead to a better and brighter future when we get these trade relationships reestablished. And we believe that will be soon.

I applaud what Ambassador Lighthizer is doing, the conversations that we’re having on various fronts. And we think you got the attention and leverage of the international community regarding the abuse that American farmers have taken in many places, both tariffs and non-tariff measures, in the EU and in China, and many other places. And we think these will be rectified very soon.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Well, the word “abuse” is a good word because this country was abused by other countries, both friend and foe. You know, our allies, frankly, did better than many of our enemies when it came to trade. It was — terrible thing happened for many years. And we’re changing that around.

In fact, what I will do is I will speak to one more because I’d like to have Bob Lighthizer just give us a little update, quickly, on where we are with NAFTA and the various trade deals. I can say this: We’re doing very well. I’m in no rush. We want to make the right deal. NAFTA has been a disaster for our country. Mexico and Canada were — if you think about making, or if you think about deficits — we had a deficit of $135 billion a year on NAFTA.

You look at New England; you look at different places where factories are still empty, they still haven’t recovered. But no companies are moving back.

So we’re going either going to do a good NAFTA — a fair NAFTA for us — or we’re not doing NAFTA at all.

Where are we, Bob?”

 

AMBASSADOR LIGHTHIZER: “Well, I would say, first of all, Mr. President, I would just underline what you say, and that is that we have an $800 billion trade deficit — something that’s not sustainable over a long period of time.

And I appreciate the opportunity to go out and negotiate these deals one at a time.

In terms of NAFTA, right now we’re meeting with the Mexicans, literally, as we sit here. And I’m hopeful that in the next several days we’ll have a breakthrough. There’s still some difficult issues to work on. Those are always hard at the end. I know you –“

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “And, by the way, Bob, if we don’t, that’s okay. That’s okay. If you don’t have breakthrough, as you call it, don’t do the deal — because it’s a lousy situation for the United States. We have much better alternatives than that. You understand.”

 

AMBASSADOR LIGHTHIZER: “Yes, sir.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “So if you can’t make the right deal, don’t make it. All right?”

 

AMBASSADOR LIGHTHIZER: “Yes, sir.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “I only tell him that every day.”

 

AMBASSADOR LIGHTHIZER: It is — yes, sir. I’ll attest — (laughter) — I’ll attest to the fact that he tells me that every day.

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “ (Inaudible.) (Laughter.)

 

AMBASSADOR LIGHTHIZER: “He also tells me what the alternatives are. So — but I think in this particular case, the best alternative may be to get a good agreement.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Okay.”

 

AMBASSADOR LIGHTHIZER: “And I think there’s a possibility of that. I’m hopeful with Mexico. And then I hope once we get one with Mexico, that Canada will come along.

So I feel reasonably good about that. But as you say, there are still some things that I have to go through. We have made headway on a number of other areas. We’ve had, as I’ve told you, some 15 or 20 other smallish agreements that have been helpful for agriculture and other areas. I call them “hitting singles.” Every time you’re at bat, it’s not a home run. We’re hitting single after single, and literally every few weeks we have one and there are several. I won’t go through them, but there are several that are in play that will make a real difference to specific people and sectors in agriculture but in other areas.

Korea, as you know, that agreement is finished. I think that’s a step in the right direction. And then we have Europe, where you started an initiative that Larry Kudlow and I are working on. And that is where — I mean, that’s a major initiative and it’s something that we’re in the process of putting together the kind of team we need to negotiate on tariffs, but on barriers, and hopefully open up a lot of new opportunities for American products to be sold in Europe.”

 

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “And I think I can say that we’re talking to China. They very much want to talk. They are just not able to give us a deal that’s acceptable. So we’re not going to do any deal until we get one that’s fair to our country.

EU, we’re doing very well. They didn’t want us to put tariffs on their cars, and they therefore decided that — they were extremely happy with the deal they had. In fact, they told me, “Oh, we’d rather not negotiate. We’re very, very happy with the deal we have.” Well, they made $151 billion last year; they should be happy. But I said, “But I’m not happy.”

And so we were ready to do tariffs on their cars but they came — they saw us a week ago, as you know; most of you were here. And I think we’re doing well, Bob, with respect to the EU. We’re negotiating something that hopefully will be fair to them and to us, and to everybody. A big difference from what it is now. Right now, it’s impossible. They have barriers where we can’t get anything through.

As far as Mexico and Canada — Mexico, Bob told you about — we’re not negotiating with Canada right now. Their tariffs are too high. Their barriers are too strong. So we’re not even talking to them right now. But we’ll see how that works out. It will only work out to our favor.

Thank you very much everybody. Thank you. Thank you.”



 

Consider Helping Immigrants

 

International Film Festival Rotterdam
Published on Jan 19, 2015



TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com

 

 

 

 

 

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The White House
Thursday, August 16, 2018

 

Omarosa Manigault Newman | Source: PBS | Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr/ E Media Inc. / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com

 

ON AN INSIDER UNHINGED ACCOUNT OF THE TRUMP WHITE HOUSE

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

Book | Source: PBS | Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr/ E Media Inc. / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com

Unhinged – Who are we being asked to consider here? Is Omarosa Manigault Newman presenting a theory that she is unhinged? Or is she throwing a spotlight on others she asserts are unhinged.

When extremely close friends turn on each other, it is important to understanding the momentary nature of the verbal fight. Birds of a feather truly flock together. Seldom or never will we see a red bird fly with an eagle in formation. So when Newman begins sharing tapes and comments about her famous boss, one should be cautious to not repeat a word either is stating.

First, let’s consider their history together. Both were raised to notoriety by supporting TV ratings and mutual aspirations. Both are globally recognized public figures. Both have increased vastly in value in terms of human capitol, by way of their connection with each other.

The thing is, both individuals enjoy being acclaimed as being great. There is nothing wrong with having a healthy concept of ones self. Who would not want to think of themselves as being great? It is when your world view negates everyone else. However, when our world view negates everyone’s value except our own and personal problems arise, how can then be hopeful of success?

You might be the only one thinking you are great, but that is here no there. How one considers themselves influences where they direct their energy day to day. How one considers the excellence of others with ones self awareness can shift paradigms and destinies. A man who fails to recognize his distinct greatness will likely fail to contribute to our universe.

This is my take away about Omarosa Manigault Newman, having talked her very briefly in the White House East Room, having been promised a meeting with her and having observed her interactions at the White House at numerous events: Omarosa does not value relationships with people and nothing will stop her from getting what she wants. Not loyalties, not respect, not gratitude, not love, not mutual goals to lift America to greater heights, not humility, not self-reflection not high ethical or moral standards, not anything. Moreover, Manigault Newman does not honor her commitments; and what comes out of her mouth is always based on how she might benefit.

Unfortunately it has been said, Manigault Newman was more focused on blocking the aspirations of those whom she perceived threatened to her sustainable success. She repeatedly blocked people, particularly black Americans, desiring to help the administration succeed. She needs to be recognized as President Trump’s dearest colleague and Trump family insider. Yes, a colleague and a need for Omarosa. The truth is Newman sees herself as being superior, experimentally, at White House operations.

A concept of being superior enabled her to misjudge everyone at the White House. Being well-connected sustained her in a job many black Americans would have cherish. Shrewdness equips her, even now, with tools to withstand the Trump brand. Pride enabled her to step ever, around or upon anyone who dares to tell her no. Even the White House Chief of Staff experienced her outrage. Unfortunately, Newman’s focus prevented her from doing anything that might advance the administration’s goals concerning Black Americans. Devoted black American Republicans were not afforded opportunities to work with the Trump administration. Exposing President Trump to the greatness of numerous black Americans was too risky for Omarosa. Retaining her status with President Trump continues to be her primary goal. Being Trump’s greatest antagonist will not deter Omarosa.


TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com

 

 

 

 

 

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The White House
Wednesday, August 15, 2018

 

President Barack Obama Hosts A Town Hall with Leaders

A Meeting Of Leaders

 

 


TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com

 

 

 

 

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The White House
Wednesday, August 15, 2018

 

President Donald J. Trump Revokes USA Security Clearance of John O. Brennan

 

President Donald J. Trump Revokes USA Security Access of John O. Brennan

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_O._Brennan

WASHINGTON DC – President Donald J. Trump revokes USA Security Access of John O. Brennan, the 5th Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. Brennan served under President Barack Hussein Obama, March 8, 2013 – January 20, 2017.

Additional high ranking individuals are being reviewed in a case by case manner for the same action.


A Statement from President Donald J. Trump:

“As the head of the executive branch and Commander-in-Chief, I have a unique constitutional responsibility to protect the nation’s classified information, including by controlling access to it. Today, in fulfilling that responsibility, I have decided to revoke the security clearance of John Brennan, former Director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

Historically, former heads of intelligence and law enforcement agencies have been allowed to retain access to classified information after their government service so that they can consult with their successors regarding matters about which they may have special insights and as a professional courtesy.

Neither of these justifications supports Mr. Brennan’s continued access to classified information. First, at this point in my administration, any benefits that senior officials might glean from consultations with Mr. Brennan are now outweighed by the risks posed by his erratic conduct and behavior. Second, that conduct and behavior has tested and far exceeded the limits of any professional courtesy that may have been due to him.

Mr. Brennan has a history that calls into question his objectivity and credibility. In 2014, for example, he denied to Congress that CIA officials, under his supervision, had improperly accessed the computer files of congressional staffers. He told the Council of Foreign Relations that the CIA would never do such a thing. The CIA’s Inspector General, however, contradicted Mr. Brennan directly, concluding unequivocally that agency officials had indeed improperly accessed congressional staffers’ files. More recently, Mr. Brennan told Congress that the intelligence community did not make use of the so-called Steele dossier in an assessment regarding the 2016 election, an assertion contradicted by at least two other senior officials in the intelligence community and all of the facts.

Additionally, Mr. Brennan has recently leveraged his status as a former high-ranking official with access to highly sensitive information to make a series of unfounded and outrageous allegations — wild outbursts on the Internet and television — about this administration. Mr. Brennan’s lying and recent conduct, characterized by increasingly frenzied commentary, is wholly inconsistent with access to the nation’s most closely held secrets, and facilities [facilitates] the very aim of our adversaries, which is to sow division and chaos.

More broadly, the issue of Mr. Brennan’s security clearance raises larger questions about the practice of former officials maintaining access to our nation’s most sensitive secrets long after their time in government has ended.

Such access is particularly inappropriate when former officials have transitioned into highly partisan positions and seek to use real or perceived access to sensitive information to validate their political attacks. Any access granted to our nation’s secrets should be in furtherance of national, not personal, interests. For this reason, I’ve also begun to review the more general question of the access to classified information by government officials.

As part of this review, I am evaluating action with respect to the following individuals: James Clapper, James Comey, Michael Hayden, Sally Yates, Susan Rice, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, and Bruce Ohr.

Security clearances for those who still have them may be revoked, and those who have already lost their security clearance may not be able to have it reinstated.

It is for the foregoing reasons that I have exercised my constitutional authority to deny Mr. Brennan access to classified information, and I will direct appropriate staff of the National Security Council to make the necessary arrangements with the appropriate agencies to implement this determination.”



 

USA Intelligence

‘Show of Force’ Displayed

 

White House Press Briefing by Press Secretary Sarah Sanders and National Security Officials brief the White House Press on the cyber-attack of Russia. | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr/TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com/E Media Inc.

TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com

 

 

 

 

 

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The White House
Wednesday, August 15, 2018

 

The Vice President of the United States of America Mike Pence

 

Vice President Mike Pence

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

 

WASHINGTON DC – On Thursday, August 16, 2018, 11:30AM Vice President Mike Pence joins President Donald J. Trump for a Cabinet meeting at the White House Cabinet Room. Vice President Pence will then enjoy lunch with President Trump at the White House Private Dining Room at 12:45 AM. Following lunch, Vice President Pence meets with the U.S. Trade Representative in the Vice President’s West Wing Office. At 3:45PM Vice President Pence joins President Trump’s meeting with the Secretary of Homeland Security at White House Oval Office.

Vice President Mike Pence at “Tax Cuts to Put America First” Event

1:39 P.M. CDT

 

THE VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA MIKE PENCE: “Well, hello, Iowa! (Applause.) It is great to be back in the Hawkeye State. A state that gave us a President and a Congress that enacted tax cuts that are putting America first and putting America back to work. (Applause.)

Let me begin today by bringing greetings from a friend of mine. I spoke to him before I got on the plane this morning. Told him I was headed your way. It was a man that the people of Iowa voted overwhelmingly to make the 45th President of the United States of America, and he loves Iowa. So I bring greetings from President Donald Trump. (Applause.)

I’m so grateful you’re all here. Very humbled by it. It’s a great, great honor to be with all of you today to be able to talk about the progress that we’re making all across this country and all across Iowa.

But before I begin, allow me to address an issue that I know is on the hearts of all the people of Iowa. You know, as Vice President, but more importantly as a father, I can’t imagine what the family of Mollie Tibbetts is going through. It’s been about a month since her disappearance. We’re truly grateful for the efforts of law enforcement officials at every level. And I want to assure all of you, as I did the governor earlier, that we’re going to continue to provide any and all federal support.

But I just want Mollie’s family to know, you’re on the hearts of every American. And we will continue to work and we will continue to pray for Mollie’s safe return. (Applause.) So thank you. Thank you all for that.

Well, Governor Reynolds, thank you. Thank you for that kind introduction. But more importantly, thanks for all you have done for Iowa’s farmers, Iowa’s families. (Applause.) Under your leadership, the Hawkeye State is recognized as one of the best-run states in America. Would you all join me in thanking Governor Kim Reynolds for the outstanding job that she is doing for the people of Iowa. (Applause.)

I also want to thank three more remarkable Iowa leaders who I had a chance to spend a little bit of time with today. Speaker of the House Linda Upmeyer — it’s an honor to be with you today, madam speaker. Thank you for your great leadership. (Applause.)

And two friends of mine — you know, I served in the Congress of the United States for about 12 years, and I know the sacrifices and I know the determination it takes to create a career of principle on Capitol Hill. And Iowa, you have two principled leaders in Congressman Steve King and Congressman David Young. (Applause.) Thank you both for being here.

And finally, I’ll give you a chance to give a round of applause to the people that brought us together today. I want to thank America First Policies for putting this forum together so we can talk about those tax cuts that are reviving this economy. (Applause.)

You know, I mostly came today just to say thank you. Thank you on behalf of our President, the First Family, on behalf of my family, and our entire administration for all of your support in Iowa. And I don’t mean just in 2016 on Election Day, but literally every day since.

I mean, you think about the last 18 months, and I got to tell you, in the year and a half since we took office, I think there’s only one way you can sum it up: It’s been a year and a half of action. (Applause.) It’s been a year and a half of results. It’s been a year and a half of promises made and promises kept. (Applause.) And we’re just getting started, Iowa.

I mean, think about it. I mean, think about it. We promised to rebuild our military, restore the arsenal of democracy. And not long ago, the President signed into law the largest increase in our national defense since the days of Ronald Reagan. (Applause.)

Our administration is taking renewed steps to ensure American leadership and dominance on land, sea, air, and space. (Applause.) In fact, we’ve already began the process of establishing the sixth branch of our armed forces: the United States Space Force. (Applause.)

And as we stand here today in Veterans Memorial Auditorium, I couldn’t be more proud to serve with a President who cares so deeply about the men and women of our armed forces, and all of those who served in the uniform of the United States. (Applause.)

You know, with the strong support of members of Congress, like David Young, we’re finally giving our veterans the benefits that they earned in the uniform of this country. We’re giving them real-time access to world-class healthcare. And we’re holding VA employees accountable to make sure our veterans get the best care in the world. (Applause.)

And I got to tell you, I know there’s a — there’s more than a few men and women who have worn the uniform who are here with us today. And if you’re able, would you mind just standing for a second if you’ve served in our armed forces and give us an opportunity one more time to say thank you for your service? (Applause.) Thank you all.

You know, just a few weeks ago, the world witnessed this President’s commitment to those who’ve served in uniform as he worked to keep our solemn obligation to all of those who’ve served. Back in June, when he sat across the table from the leader of North Korea, he not only secured a commitment for the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, but President Donald Trump secured a commitment for the return of all of the remains of our missing fallen from the Korean War. (Applause.)

I had the great honor of being present just a week and a half ago in Hawaii when the first remains of our fallen came home. And I have to tell you, as the son of a combat veteran from the Korean War, the President will never give me a higher honor.

And the truth is, thanks to the leadership and the compassion of our Commander-in-Chief, our boys are finally coming home. (Applause.) So it’s promises made and promises kept.

But closer to home, we promised to enforce our laws and secure our borders. And I’m here to tell you, from our — the first day of this administration, we’ve been giving law enforcement at every level the resources and the respect they deserve.

Working with these leaders in Congress like Congressman Steve King, we’ve enacted the biggest funding increase in border security in nearly a decade. (Applause.) We’re removing criminal illegal immigrants and gangs from our streets in record numbers. And we’ve already started to build that wall on the southern border of the United States. (Applause.) It’s happening.

We also promised to — this President did — to appoint strong conservatives to our federal courts at every level. In case you hadn’t noticed it, the Senate’s back in session this summer. Should be confirming a few more judges this week. But this President has already set a record for the most court of appeals judges in the first two years of any administration in American history, and they are conservatives all. (Applause.)

And that doesn’t even count Justice Neil Gorsuch or the next great justice to the Supreme Court of the United States, Judge Brett Kavanaugh. (Applause.)

Now let me say a word: Judge Kavanaugh is a man I’ve been able to spend some time with. He’s a man of integrity and principle. He has a proven record of support for limited government, our Second Amendment, and religious liberty. And I know he’s going to get the fair hearing he deserves because the chairman of Senate Judiciary Committee is Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley. (Applause.)

But let me be clear: Given his integrity, given his record, given his commitment to the Constitution of the United States, Judge Brett Kavanaugh deserves the support of every member of the United States Senate. (Applause.)

So it’s about promises made and promises kept. But what brings us here today is that we’ve also, under President Trump’s leadership, kept the promise to focus on this economy — get this economy moving again in Iowa and all across the country. And as I stand before you today, I know you feel it too. Under President Donald Trump’s leadership, confidence is back. Jobs are coming back. In a word: America is back. And we’re just getting started. (Applause.)

I mean, think about it. Since Election Day, businesses large and small have created nearly 4 million new jobs including 17,000 jobs right here in the Hawkeye State.

Iowa has actually the third-lowest unemployment rate in America and it’s fallen by more than 20 percent in just the last year and a half, Governor. (Applause.)

The truth is, unemployment claims haven’t been this low in nearly 50 years. In fact, the President and I couldn’t be more proud — couldn’t be more proud that we’ve set a new record: the lowest unemployment rate ever recorded African-Americans and Hispanic-Americans. (Applause.)

I mean, the truth is, the American Dream is working for every American once again. After eight years of slow growth under the last administration, we just reached economic growth of 4.1 percent. That’s more than twice as fast as the average rate of growth under the Obama years. (Applause.)

And I’ll never forget, we were out on the campaign trail — out on the campaign trail, Governor. It was — I think it might have been September of 2016. The President was giving a big economic speech at this economic club of New York. And all the economists and the advisors backstage had told him — they said, “When you get to that part, say we’re going to cut taxes, we’re going to roll back regulation. And then you can say, ‘I believe that we can achieve 3 percent economic growth.’”

And then-candidate Donald Trump looked at his advisors as I stood nearby, and he said, “Well, I think it will be more than 3 percent.” And they said, “Well” — (laughs) — this is a true story. They said — they said, “Well, no, but we know we can get to 3 percent. We haven’t seen 3 percent consistently for a while, so let’s just go with 3 percent.” And he says, “Well, but I think it will be more.” And they said, “No, just go with that.” He said, “Okay.”

He walked out on the stage. He got to that part of that speech. He turned the page. He said, “Well, when we get our agenda done” — he said, “I’m going to establish a national goal of 4 percent economic growth.” And he said, “Those people backstage didn’t want me to say it, but I know we’re going to do it, and I know we’re going to do even better than that.” And he was right. (Applause.)

Last year, we averaged almost 3 percent. And this year, we’re on track to be over 3 percent. It’s just incredible to see what the American people have done with the agenda that you all have advanced.

I got a text on the way here from a friend that runs a bulldozing company down in Georgia. And he was telling the — telling another friend of mine that he said, “I can’t promise you I can get the dozers out to the farm by December.” Because he said, and I quote, “This Trump economy ain’t no joke.” (Applause.) And no truer words.

And it’s not happened by accident, folks. I mean, the truth is, from early in this administration, this President has been rolling back federal red tape at a record level. You know, President Donald Trump has actually repealed more federal red tape already than any President in American history. (Applause.) And that included repealing the Waters of the USA rule, strengthening private property rights for every American.

We promised to unleash American energy, we approved the Keystone and Dakota pipelines right out of the gate. And President Trump put America first when we withdrew the United States from the job-killing Paris Climate Accord. (Applause.)

And we’ve been fighting for a level playing field. We’ve confronted countries that, frankly, for too long have been taking advantage of America on trade. And we’ve made unprecedented progress to forge trade deals that are free, fair, and reciprocal that put American workers and American families first.

Now, as a former governor of an ag state, I know that there’s some concern among our farmers right now. And while some countries are actually retaliating against our farm economy because they don’t want to change their unfair trade practices, let me make you a promise: Our administration will not back down. We will stand with American farmers 100 percent. (Applause.)

Now, I got to tell you, there’s not a whole lot of time goes by before the President and I hear from your great Governor Kim Reynolds on just this topic. She’s a great, great champion for agriculture here in Iowa and across the country. (Applause.) The same goes for Congressman Young and Congressman King. (Applause.)

I mean, the truth is, they’re fighting tirelessly for American farmers across this state, and we’re grateful to it.

And as we speak, we’re working with these members of Congress to pass a multi-year farm bill that’s going to provide rural America, our farmers, and producers with the long-term certainty to prosper during changing times. I promise you that. (Applause.)

But as Governor Reynolds and I talk on a regular basis, the good news is we’re making real progress on better trade deals. As we speak, we’re working with Canada and Mexico on a renegotiated North American Free Trade Agreement. And we’re making real progress, Iowa, I’m here to tell you.

We’re actually in negotiations already with Japan about a new and a better trade relationship. And the European Union was in just a few days ago to start the same conversation.

But we’ve already opened up lots of different markets around the world to American products: Argentina to American pork, Vietnam to American corn and wheat, China and Australia to beef, and the European Union, in those conversations, already agreed to buy more American soybeans. And I’ll promise you, we will never stop fighting until American farmers win as never before. (Applause.)

So we’ve been cutting red tape, been unleashing American energy, we’ve been fighting to open foreign markets to American goods. But probably one of the biggest reasons for the growth and the expansion in the economy that we see today is that, right before Christmas, President Trump, with the strong support of these members of Congress, kept the promise we made to the American people when he signed the largest tax cuts and tax reform in American history. (Applause.)

I mean, we cut taxes for working families. Now, back of the envelope, we figured out the typical family of four in Des Moines is going to save about $3,000 a year on their taxes.

We cut taxes for businesses large and small. It’s what happens when you elect a businessman to be President of the United States. He insisted that we cut taxes so small and large businesses can compete and create jobs here in Iowa against businesses anywhere in the world. (Applause.)

We repealed death taxes for nearly every American farmer so the family farm can stay right where it belongs. (Applause.)

And when we were busy cutting taxes, in case you didn’t notice, we cut out the core of Obamacare. The individual mandate tax is gone. (Applause.)

And the results, we already talked about, but they’ve really been remarkable. I mean, thanks to these tax cuts alone, more than 6 million Americans have already received bonuses, pay raises, and bigger benefits, and that includes 25,000 Iowans who’ve already seen a better benefit or a better paycheck or a bonus as a result of the tax cuts. (Applause.)

I mean, following the tax cuts, Iowa utilities like Alliant Energy, MidAmerica[n] Energy, Iowa American Water Company are actually cutting their rates. That’s worth a round of applause. That’s going to save people in the Hawkeye State $110 million a year in your electrical bills. (Applause.)

And companies of all size — I hear it everywhere I go in the country — they’ve been investing in workers, from Anfinson Farm Store, which gave a $1,000 bonus and a 5 percent raise to its seven workers, to Nationwide Insurance, Wells Fargo, and Lowe’s that gave raises and bonuses to thousands of Iowa employees. It’s really been incredible.

Now, I got to tell you, you know, a $1,000 bonus in your paycheck that you weren’t expecting at the end of the year, you know, that’s — I think that’s kind of a big deal. (Applause.) You know? It is.

But, you know, not everybody agrees. Right? (Laughter.) I mean, Nancy Pelosi — remember what she said after she heard that people all across the country are getting a $1,000 bonus at the end of last year? She said $1,000 was nothing more — was nothing more than crumbs. Remember that?

AUDIENCE: Booo —

THE VICE PRESIDENT: Well, let me remind all of you that my wife Karen and I come from, you know, what we call the Walmart Wing of the West Wing — (applause) — of the White House. Is that — are you with me on that? Okay, good.

I mean, we’ve always lived on a budget. We still do as a family. We had a term, when our kids were little; we had a term for an extra $1,000 in my paycheck at the end of the year that we weren’t expecting: Christmas. (Applause.) Anybody else there?

I mean, in all seriousness, folks, anybody that says $1,000 in the pockets of working families in this country [is crumbs] is out of touch with the American people and should never lead the American Congress again. (Applause.)

Now, we’ve accomplished all these good things that we’re talking about: the progress, the energy in this economy, with the strong support and partnership of Iowa’s leaders at every level, including these great conservatives in Congress who are here with us today.

And Congressman Steve King not only voted to cut your taxes, he’s been working, as I said before, to secure our borders, enforce our laws, and he’s just made an incredible difference. And I just couldn’t be more proud to have served with him in Congress and to be sharing this day with him today in Iowa. Give him another round of applause, folks. Everything we’ve done has been a result of the strong support. (Applause.)

And Congressman David Young — I didn’t have the privilege of serving with him in Congress; I’d gone home to Indiana by the time he showed up. But he arrived in Capitol Hill and has been a leader from day one. Just like Steve, he’s a man of principle and a man of integrity. He’s a champion for tax cuts for working families and job creators. He’s fighting for Iowa farmers,

But he also authored legislation to fix the Veterans Crisis Line. I have to tell you, Congressman David Young is doing a great job for Iowa’s working families and our veterans, and we couldn’t be more grateful. (Applause.)

And these leaders aren’t the only ones that have been cutting your taxes, in case you didn’t notice. So is Governor Kim Reynolds. (Applause.) Earlier this year, Governor Reynolds laid out a vision to lower the tax burden on Iowa families by nearly 25 percent. And in May, Governor Reynolds delivered when she signed the largest state tax cut in Iowa history. (Applause.) Thank you, Governor.

I mean, the truth is, in case you didn’t notice, under Governor Reynolds’s leadership, Iowa has been ranked as one of the top three best-run states in America. It’s ranked as the best state in nation for middle-class families.

And I got to be quite honest with you, I’m kind of glad I’m not governor of Indiana anymore and have to compete with Governor Kim Reynolds for jobs and opportunities that are coming to the great state Iowa. Thank you, Governor. Thank you for being here. (Applause.)

I mean, truth is, though: These leaders have been standing with us. You know, one of the things the President — and I see him — I see him say more often than almost anything else, when people will come up and thank him for what he’s done for the country, he invariably will say, “It’s what we’ve done. It’s what we’ve done together.”

I mean, the leaders that you’ve supported, from the President on down; the agenda that you continue to support each and every day — it’s what we’ve done together. And I hope you leave here today with that great sense of gratitude that the President and I, and I know all these leaders feel for the support you’ve delivered.

I mean, the truth is, the results speak for themselves. And they just about have to because they’re not covered on most of your major cable news networks. (Laughter.) Right? (Applause.)

I mean, we’re turning America around whether most of the Washington media is noticing it. All right? Because it’s happening. (Applause.) It’s true.

The truth is the American people are not only more optimistic than they’ve been in years; I also think — as I close, I also have to tell you, I think faith in America is rising too. (Applause.) I do. Faith in our ideals, faith in our future, faith that the best days are yet to come in this country.

I mean, I have to tell you, one of the most troubling things to me, in recent years — which you actually had some polling — that showed that a near majority of Americans didn’t think their kids were going to have more opportunities that they’ve had in life to succeed. And that’s changing now. You can feel it in the air. And we’ve come this far because of all of you.

So as I close, I just — I not only want to thank you, but I hope you leave here today with a little bit of a burden on your hearts. I hope you leave here today with the burden to continue to stand with all of those that are standing up for the agenda that Iowa voted for — voted for so strongly in 2016.

Keep standing with this President. Keep standing with these leaders at the state and federal level that are standing up boldly for that agenda — the agenda that is making America safe and prosperous again.

And secondly, go tell somebody about it. Right? I mean, let your voice be heard. You know, say — say, you know, “I was in Des Moines the other day. I ran into Mike” — (laughter) — “and it took him the better part of a half hour just to go through the top lines of everything this nation has accomplished in just a year and a half under the leadership of President Donald Trump.” (Applause.) I mean, go tell them.

I mean, talk to people at work, at worship. You know, I’ll always believe the most powerful media in America is now, and always has been, word of mouth. I mean, just when one neighbor talks to another. So stop people outside the grocery store, over a backyard fence, outside worship on Sunday, maybe over a bite to eat at Machine Shed — (laughter) — and just talk to them about what you heard today.

I mean, tell them what they’re not hearing about from most of the major national news networks. I mean, here’s — let’s start here: Tell them we cut their taxes so they can keep more of what they earn — (Applause.) — and that jobs and the economy are coming back. Okay?

Tell them we restoring American strength at home, rebuilding our military; we’re commanding respect in the world; and their families are safer, and their freedom is secure. Go tell them that — because it’s happening. (Applause.)

I mean, tell them that we’re putting Washington to work for them, and not the other way around. I mean, just tell them that the forgotten men and women of America are forgotten no more. Go tell them, Iowa, because it is the God’s honest truth. (Applause.) It’s the truth.

It’s a great story. But America has always been a great story. You know, I like to say America might just be the second greatest story ever told. (Laughter.)

So as I close, let me — let me leave you with one other thought. You know, I think — I think faith in America is rising — faith in our ideals and in our future. But from all of my travels across this country, and even today here in Iowa, I believe with all my heart that faith is rising in America as well. (Applause.) I see it. I feel it everywhere I go.

I mean, the sweetest words the President and I ever hear are when people will reach out, grab you by the hand, and say, “I’m praying for you.” And I hear it a lot. (Applause.)

So let me leave you with that. As you leave here today determined to continue to support all of those that are supporting this agenda that Iowa voted for, as you leave here today determined to go tell somebody, if you’re also of a mind to bow the head and bend the knee from time to time, I’d encourage you to do it. It’s a good time to pray for America. (Applause.) Pray for all the people of this country because prayer matters. It truly does.

And I rather think that our 16th President said it pretty well. He was asked during his time — a time much more challenging than we could even imagine in this time in our nation — he was asked once — Abraham Lincoln was — if he thought that God was on his side. And President Lincoln said, I’d rather concern myself more with whether we’re on God’s side than whether God is on our side. (Applause.)

So pray for America. Pray for all of the American people. Pray for this one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. (Applause.) Because it will make a difference. Believe it. (Applause.)

So I got to run. I got a plane to catch. (Laughter.) And I want to thank you for coming out. I just have to tell you, for this small-town boy from southern Indiana, just from my heart: Thank you for the honor of serving as your Vice President. It’s the greatest honor of my life. (Applause.) And thank you for being here today. (Applause.)

I leave here today with — as I always do from these gatherings — I leave here today with renewed confidence — I really do — that with your continued support, with great leaders like Governor Kim Reynolds at the State House, with great leaders like your great conservative leaders in Congress, with President Donald Trump in the White House, and with God’s help, I just know we will make America safe again. (Applause.) Together, we will make America prosperous again. And to borrow a phrase — (laughter) — we will make America great again. (Applause.)

Thank you very much. God bless you, Iowa. And God bless the United States of America. (Applause.)


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The White House
Monday, August 13, 2018

 

Trump Signs “John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019”

President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America delivers remarks on the “John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019” on Monday, August 13, 2018 at Fort Drum, New York, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

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____________________
The White House
Wednesday, August 15, 2018

 

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders Briefs the Global Press

 

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

 

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders Briefs the Global Press

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

 

 

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

WASHINGTON DC – White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders convenes a press briefing with the global press at the White House West Wing in Washington DC, U.S.A. on Wednesday, August 15, 2018. Secretary Sanders opened the press briefing with a presidential statement.

The Trump administration argued today that Mr. Brennan has a history that calls into question his objectivity and credibility. Mr. Brennan, the Trump administration declares, has recently leveraged his status as a former high-ranking official with access to highly sensitive information to make a series of unfounded and outrageous allegations — wild outbursts on the Internet and television — about this administration.

Moreover President Trump argues, when former officials have transitioned into highly partisan positions and seek to use real access to sensitive information to validate their political attacks, they should not have access to information that might help them prevail.

“Any access granted to our nation’s secrets should be in furtherance of national, not personal, interests.”

Historically, former heads of intelligence and law enforcement agencies have been allowed to retain access to classified information after their government service so that they can consult with their successors regarding matters about which they may have special insights and as a professional courtesy.

“For this reason, President Trump has also begun to review the more general question of the access to classified information by government officials.”

Moreover, as part of President Trump’review, he is evaluating action with respect to the following individuals: James Clapper, James Comey, Michael Hayden, Sally Yates, Susan Rice, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, and Bruce Ohr.

~

Press Secretary Sarah Sanders Briefs Global Press

James S. Brady Press Briefing Room
2:34 P.M. EDT

[beginning beyond presidential statement on security access of John O. Brennan, the 5th Director of the Central Intelligence Agency]

 

WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY SARAH SANDERS: . . . . With that, I’ll take your questions. Jonathan.

QUESTION: Sarah, first, I’ve got a question I wanted to ask you. But first, just to follow up on that, it seems like everybody that you mentioned has been a political critic of the President. Is he going after his political opponents with this?

SECRETARY SANDERS: No. If there were others that weren’t, that we deemed necessary, we would certainly take a look and review those as well.

QUESTION: Okay. I want to ask you about something the President’s attorney said. Rudy Giuliani said, of the Special Counsel Robert Mueller, he needs to “write the damn report so we can see it and rebut it.” And he said if it’s not written within the next two or three weeks, quote, “we will just unload on him like a ton of bricks.” Is the President okay with his attorney threatening the Special Counsel in this way?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Certainly we’ve made clear we’d like to see this wrap up. For questions specific about comments by Mr. Giuliani, I’d refer you back to him.

QUESTION: Was that authorized by the President — we’ll come after him with a ton of bricks?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Once again, for questions specific about the investigation, particularly comments from Rudy Giuliani, I’d refer you back to him to address those.

Jeff.

QUESTION: Hey, Sarah. Following up Jon’s question, how is this announcement by the President — how can Americans not interpret that as a “getting back against his critics”? And isn’t it also an attempt to curtail their freedom of speech by penalizing them for being critical on television?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Not at all. The President has a constitutional responsibility to protect classified information, and who has access to it. And that’s what he’s doing is fulfilling that responsibility in this action.

QUESTION: Is this the kind — I’m sorry.

SECRETARY SANDERS: “This is actually specific to Mr. Brennan, and the others are currently under review.

QUESTION: Is this the kind of precedent he wants to set for future Presidents when his administration is out of office? And why are there no Republicans on that list?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Once again, if we deemed it necessarily, we would certainly look into that and be happy to review those.

Justin.

QUESTION: I wanted to ask about Turkey, but just to buttonhole on what Jeff said. I guess the reason people would say that this argument strains credibility is there is obvious examples, even from this administration; your former national security advisor admitted to lying to the FBI. Why is this only a list of Democrats who have been critical of the administration? And why should Americans have confidence that you are taking this seriously if there’s not a single Republican on that list?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Again, certainly, we would look at those if we deemed it necessary. And we’ll keep you posted if that list gets updated.

QUESTION: So, on Turkey — Turkey announced today that they’re going to slap tariffs on about a billion dollars of American goods. So I’m wondering if you have a response to that and if there’s any discussion internally about retaliation towards that continuing to escalate this?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “The tariffs from Turkey are certainly regrettable and a step in the wrong direction. The tariffs that the United States placed on Turkey were out of national security interests. Theirs are out of retaliation. I’m not going to get ahead of anything on what we may or may not do in an effort to respond, but certainly we don’t support Turkey’s decision to retaliate against us protecting our national security interests.

QUESTION: An appeals court in Turkey today denied Pastor Brunson’s appeal to try to be released. Does the administration view that as a new setback, or as sort of maintaining the status quo?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “We feel that Turkey, and specifically President Erdoğan, have treated Pastor Brunson — who we know to be a very good person and a strong Christian who’s done nothing wrong — very unfairly, very badly. And it’s something that we won’t forget in the administration.

Let’s move on. Jake, go ahead.

QUESTION: Thank you, Sarah. So the administration has put out a robust defense of Pastor Brunson, but at the same time, there are tens of thousands of Christians in North Korea who have been imprisoned almost exclusively because of their religion. Open Doors USA considered North Korea to be the number-one country when it comes to persecution of the Christians. Is this something that the administration has also been looking into?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Certainly, we would like to see any individual persecuted for their Christian beliefs, or imprisoned, released. Again, we’ve been working with North Korea on a number of fronts. That’s something we’d certainly like to see them change their behavior on.

QUESTION: Has it been brought up, though?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I know it’s been discussed, and again, it’s certainly something we’d like to see their behavior changed.

QUESTION: And my second — that was a follow-up.

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Sorry, Jake, I got to keep —

QUESTION: That was just a follow-up. My question —

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Go ahead. Yep.

QUESTION: Although territory held by ISIS has been reduced by over 90 percent, a recent U.N. report suggests that as many as 30,000 ISIS members still exist in Iraq and Syria. So, first of all, what’s the administration’s take on this specific U.N. report? And secondly, what would the administration consider an overall victory against ISIS?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “We’d like to see every single member of ISIS defeated across the globe. I think that would be the ultimate victory.

Jon, go ahead.

QUESTION: Thanks a lot, Sarah. Closing arguments are taking place across the river, in Alexandria, for the tax fraud trial of Paul Manafort. And in mid-June, the President said that he felt badly for Mr. Manafort and that he believes he’s being treated unfairly. Is the President still friends with Mr. Manafort? When was the last time he spoke with Mr. Manafort?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I’m not aware of any recent conversations that they’ve had.

Blake.

QUESTION: And why does he believe he’s being treated unfairly?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I think the President has made that clear in his previous comments. I don’t have anything to add beyond that at this point.

Blake, go ahead.

QUESTION: Sarah, thank you. You just said, a couple minutes ago, that the increased tariff levels with Turkey were out of the national security interest. But when the President announced it on Twitter last week, or earlier this month, he said, quote — at the time, he said, “Our relations with Turkey are not good at this time.” The suggestion there being that this has to do with the pastor that is being held in Turkey. Simply put, if Pastor Brunson is allowed to leave Turkey, do those tariff levels go away? Is that kind of the deal that could be in place? Is that a deal that could be on the table?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “No. The tariffs that are in place on steel would not be removed with the release of Pastor Brunson. The tariffs are specific to national security. The sanctions, however, that have been placed on Turkey are specific to Pastor Brunson and others that we feel are being held unfairly. And we would consider that at that point.

QUESTION: In the interest of national security, what’s changed over the last month or so with Turkey that you’re justifying national security concerns?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Again, the President has been clear about the steel and aluminum industries — steel particularly in this case — that those are industries that must be protected. And we must have the ability to reach certain levels of manufacturing of those products here in the United States for the purposes of national security.

John.

QUESTION: Thank you, Sarah. I was going to ask about Turkey, but based on your opening statement, I have to point out that the attorneys for former Director Comey and former Deputy Director McCabe say that their passes were automatically demagnetized the day that they were separated from their offices. Two others, Mr. Clapper and General Hayden, have said they do not use the pass at all.

And also, it’s my understanding, from a historical standpoint, this would be the first time the President himself removed the passes from anybody; that that has normally been done by agency heads or immediate superiors to people.

Have you considered all these things in the process you say you’re doing to (inaudible)?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Again, the other individuals — those that are being reviewed — that determination will be made at a later date. Those that have already been revoked, it would be for the purpose of reviewing whether or not they should be reinstated or not.

Major.

QUESTION: Sarah, just so I understand the standard that the President is applying, you outlined two areas of either contradictory or erroneous testimony from Brennan. Is that the only standard by which this administration is asserting he should have his security clearance revoked?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Again, I laid out the reasons in the opening statement —

QUESTION: Right. But you cited those two instances.

SECRETARY SANDERS: “— specific to Director Brennan. The others are currently under review. I don’t any have any specifics on those at this point.

QUESTION: So my question is, is that the standard? If you give erroneous testimony, you say something and you have to correct at a certain date in the future — if you work for this administration, for example — does that mean you could lose your security clearance?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “My understanding is this is being looked at on a case-by-case basis, which is why each individual is being reviewed, and determination made at that point.

QUESTION: Does this administration have any reason to believe, or evidence to suggest, Brennan has misused classified information or monetized his access to it, as was alleged earlier by this administration?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Again, I’ve laid out the reasons for the decision that was made on this specific instance, and we’ll continue to review the other actions.

QUESTION: Can we assume by the absence of you not saying those things, you didn’t find any evidence of that?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “No, I wouldn’t make any assumptions. I’m telling you what the decision was based off on in this case.

Andrew.

QUESTION: Thank you very much. I wanted to follow up on a question yesterday about Afghanistan. Today, there was another suicide attack in Kabul, which killed 37 people in a school. A military base in the North has been overrun by the Taliban. They have also seized parts of an eastern provincial capital. Why do you think President Trump’s strategy in Afghanistan is working?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “As always, we’re going to continue to review and look at the best ways to move forward. I’ll leave it to the Department of Defense to get into specifics about tactical situations on the ground.

What I can tell you is that we’re committed to finding a political solution to end the conflict in Afghanistan. We’re exploring all avenues for dialogue in close coordination with the Afghan government, and we’re going to continue to do that.

If we have announcements or changes in the policy, we’ll certainly let you know.

QUESTION: I just wanted to follow up on a Turkey question, if I may. Have you guys assessed whether the liquidity situation in Turkey’s financial sector is a risk, in light of the fall of the lira? It’s fallen like a quarter in the last three or four days.

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Certainly we’re monitoring the situation with respect to the Turkish economy and the decline of the lira. But Turkey’s economic problems, those are a part of a long-term trend — something of its own making, and not the result of any actions the United States has taken.

Saagar.

QUESTION: Thank you, Sarah. One of the individuals that you listed on that list of clearances that is under review is Bruce Ohr. He’s a current employee of the Department of Justice. So instead of putting him under the review, does the President believe he should be fired?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I don’t have any personnel announcements on that front; I can only speak to this specific case.

QUESTION: But why put his security clearance under review, which would render him unable to do his job, and not just fire him?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Once again, I don’t have any personnel announcements on that front. I can just tell you we’re looking into that specific matter.

Peter.

QUESTION: Thank you, Sarah. If people who criticize the President publicly on TV or are public in their criticisms, are they at greater risk of losing their security clearances than people who stay silent?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Once again, this is looked at on a case-by-case basis, and we’ll do an individual review and make that determination.

Kevin.

QUESTION: Thank you, Sarah. A question about the return of lawmakers on Capitol Hill, and then a follow-up very quickly. Now that they are back, can you sort of lay out the White House strategy for moving forward with this agenda? We’ve talked about wall funding. Obviously, a lot of people are very curious about the Kavanaugh nomination moving forward, DACA and other issues. Is there a strategy in place to begin to work with lawmakers now that they’re back?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Certainly. We have continued ongoing conversations on a number of fronts with lawmakers, even while they were not here in Washington. We are happy that the hearing dates have been set for Justice Kavanaugh, and we look forward to seeing him get confirmed.

QUESTION: My very quick follow-up was: First of all, you didn’t mention anything about a possible shutdown. Is that still something that the President is continuing?

And my follow was going to be on the farm bill. There are a great number of people and a great number of states that are curious about this work requirement that the USDA is trying to implement. In some places, they already have it; they say you have to work. In other areas, you don’t have that requirement. Is that something the White House still supports?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Something we still support.

In terms of a shutdown, I don’t have any announcements on that front. We certainly still want to see a lot of things happen. We’d love for Congress to actually do its job, particularly when it comes to immigration. We have a completely broken system, and we’d like to see them work with us to fix it.

Catherine.

QUESTION: Farm Bill?

QUESTION: Thank you, Sarah —

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I don’t have any updates for you on that front right now.

QUESTION: Omarosa Manigault Newman was the highest-ranking African American staffer in the West Wing. No black —”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “She actually didn’t work in the West Wing, but go ahead.”

QUESTION: Well, no staffer had been appointed at that level since her absence. Can you tell us exactly how many African American staffers there are in this building? And is it a priority for the administration to reflect the diversity of the country?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Certainly, as I addressed yesterday, we value diversity not just at the White House, but throughout the entire administration. And we’re going continue trying to diversify the staff. We have a large number of diverse staffers from various backgrounds, both race, religion, gender —

QUESTION: But how many black staffers are there in this building, Sarah?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Look, I’m not going to go through and do a count, the same way I’m not going to do a sit-down and count on the staffers that are in your news organizations.

QUESTION: Thirteen percent of the country is African American.

SECRETARY SANDERS: “And we would love to diversify our staff and continue to do so. We do think it’s important. We’re going to continue to work to make that happen.

Raquel.

QUESTION: Sarah, thank you very much. About the election last night — we are seeing the Democrats embracing more diversity, choosing Muslims, also candidates — transgender candidates, rejecting the President’s agenda. So my question is, what do you think will be the impact of his agenda, and also these recent controversies about race and minorities on the election in November?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Again, I think people are looking at the policies that the individuals are implementing and how those are going to affect those communities, and whether or not it’s actually going to help individuals, people across this country. That’s what we’re looking at. That’s what we’re focused on. That’s what we’re going to continue to do.

I’m going to take one last question. Eamon.

QUESTION: Thanks, Sarah. I’d like to ask a couple questions about the President’s recent comments, if I could. One is on Harley Davidson. The President commented earlier in the week, “Many @harleydavidson owners plan to boycott the company if manufacturing moves overseas. Great!” Is the President of the United States endorsing a boycott of an iconic American company here?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Look, the President has made his feelings on that very clear. The President’s focus is on making sure that we get good trade deals and that we keep business and industry here in the United States.

QUESTION: Does he want to see a boycott of Harley, though?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I think he’d rather see them put all their companies back here in the United States and build all of their great machines here in this country.

Thanks so much, guys. Have a great day.”



 

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____________________
The White House
Monday, August 13, 2018

President Trump Signs “John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019”

 

President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America delivers remarks on the “John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019” on Monday, August 13, 2018 at Fort Drum, New York, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

 

 



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The White House
Tuesday, August 14, 2018

 

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders Briefs the Global Press

 

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

 

 

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders Briefs the Global Press

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

 

WASHINGTON DC – White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders convenes a press briefing with the global press at the White House West Wing in Washington DC, U.S.A. on Tuesday, August 14, 2018.

 

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

 

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders Briefs the Global Press

with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations

The White House James S. Brady Press Briefing Room

2:48 P.M. EDT

 

 

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY SARAH SANDERS: “Good afternoon. The images from the Honorable Carry Ceremony at Joint Base Pearl Harbor this month made us all proud to be Americans.

President Trump is committed to getting the almost 8,000 left behind from the Korean War home, and bringing closure to the families who have been waiting for more than 60 years. The process of identifying and verifying the remains is challenging but one that this administration is committed to.

Overseeing this process is Kelly McKeague, the Director of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency. Leading DOD’s worldwide operation of research, investigation, recovery, and identification, and supporting functions, Director McKeague strives to provide the fullest possible accounting of our missing personnel.

The Director, along with his colleagues, Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director, and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations, have joined us today to offer remarks and take your questions on this topic.

After this, I’ll be back up to address other questions and news of the day. Thanks.

Director.

Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency | White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with the White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A.. | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

DIRECTOR KELLY MCKEAGUE: Thank you, Sarah. Ladies and gentlemen, good afternoon.

The August 1st repatriation and homecoming in Hawaii of the remains of the Korean War unaccounted for was a poignant manifestation of the commitments secured by President Trump and pledged by Chairman Kim at the Singapore Summit.

For the families of the 7,700 still unaccounted for from the Korean War, this first step in fulfilling this commitment has undoubtedly provided a seed of hope.

Last week, over 700 of these family members gathered in Arlington, Virginia to receive government updates, and they were resoundingly appreciative of the successful advocacy of the President and his administration.

Two of those family members who attended, Charles and Larry McDaniel, were the recipients of the dog tag their father, Master Sgt. Charles McDaniel, of Indiana. It was the sole personal effect returned by the North Koreans.

The remains of those 55 cases are well into the painstaking multi-faceted analyses by Dr. John Byrd and his forensic science team in Hawaii. And in the coming weeks, Dr. Tim McMahon and his dedicated DNA specialists in Delaware will begin their meticulous testing.

The metal of our scientists and the capabilities of our labs will be challenged. But in the months and years ahead, they will make identifications from these remains and give families long-sought answers.

We are guardedly optimistic the 1 August repatriation is the first tangible action of others with which we will be able to account for more of our missing from the Korean War.

The second aspect of the Korean — of the Singapore commitment was the recovery of remains in North Korea, which DPRK officials reaffirmed last month. We are in the midst of exploring next steps as well as discussions with the Korean People’s Army for the express purpose of resuming joint field operations and having additional repatriations.

But our mission to search for, find, and account for missing Department of Defense personnel from World War II through Operation Iraqi Freedom is one not limited to the Korean Peninsula.

Today, 186 personnel from DPA and private partners are deployed in seven nations. And yesterday, 50 of those members returned from Laos and the Philippines.

Our global mission is humanitarian in every respect, because the impact of a missing American to their family is not constrained by time or generations. And it leaves an enduring pain and void. This is why former enemies, like Vietnam, used cooperation on the POW/MIA mission as a bridge to normalization in today’s thriving bilateral relationship with the United States.

The fact that the United States of America vigorously pursues the fullest-possible accounting of our missing reflects our values as a nation.

The sacred obligation, if not moral imperative, remains a high priority for the Department of Defense. Inherent to the exceptional teamwork, resources, and resoluteness provided by multiple agencies is a solemn vow that those were sent off in harm’s way and are missing will not be forgotten. And their families will receive answers to their decades of uncertainty.

My colleagues and I welcome your questions.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Major.”

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

QUESTION MAJOR: “Gentlemen, I was with President Clinton in 2000 when he went to a place in Vietnam, north of Hanoi, where one of these recovery efforts were underway. So I have some familiarity with this. Even there, when things are discovered, it takes a long time to establish the trail forensically.

I’d like to ask you both: What condition are the remains or the parts of remains you’ve received so far, and how challenging with the forensic work be ahead? Are you a long, long way? Or was what you received something that gets you close to identifying and confirming?”

Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency | White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with the White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A.. | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

DR. JOHN BYRD: “We would characterize the preservation of the remains as moderate to poor, as a general consideration. However, what our lab specializes in is making identifications in circumstances where you have very little to work with. And so I’m confident that we’re going to do well with the remains in these 55 boxes over the coming months and maybe the next several years.

When you look at what’s at stake, we’re going to be doing a lot of DNA sampling. And that’s what Dr. McMahon’s lab does, is they process the samples and then they go into a mass database where they can be compared to all of the other samples that we’ve generated from remains from North Korea, and also compared to the family members.

And so it takes some time to get the samples processed through the lab at AFMES; it takes some time to get them into the mass comparison. But once they’re in there, we’ll start looking for the quick identifications that can be made where you have compelling matches that show themselves early on.

We also look for comparisons to dental records that can be distinctive. We look for individuals that are unusual, in the sense of being very tall, very short, very old. Anything that distinguishes somebody, we can usually get a good clue and identify them faster.

But because of the preservation of the remains, that will just sort of guide the kinds of methods that we can bring to bear on the case. And the case will be very DNA — or very DNA-intensive in terms of the way that we’re going to go about this.”

QUESTION: “And did the number of 55, is that — what does that number represent —”

DR. BYRD: “It’s the number of boxes.”

QUESTION: “Is that 55 individuals?”

Dr. John Byrd, | White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

DR. BYRD: “No. It’s the number of boxes that the remains came in. And at no time did we expect there to be one body, one box. Nor did the North Koreans try to pitch it that way to us when we were in Wonsan.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “John.”

QUESTION JOHN: “Mr. Director, thank you. What type of certainty do you have that the remains that the North Koreans have handed over to the Americans are that of missing Americans as opposed to other nationalities that fought alongside the Americans who were in the Korean War?

MR. MCKEAGUE: “We have a high confidence. So in the early ‘90s, for five years, the North Koreans would repatriate, unilaterally, remains that they had recovered. Out of those 208 boxes over those five years, we estimated, after DNA sampling, 400 individuals.

Now, from that, 200 were Americans. So the likelihood is — you’re correct, there may be some of U.N.-sending forces, there may be some South Korean soldiers — remains, as well as Chinese and North Korean.

What our laboratories — both DNA and the forensic laboratory have the technology and the capabilities by which to differentiate those remains over the course of the next several years.”

MS. SANDERS: David.

QUESTION: “Director, I think you mentioned in some discussions with the North Koreans about potential future actions, maybe to search for more remains and joint efforts as such. I think the Pentagon and Secretary Mattis have mentioned that.

If I’m to understand right, the Bush administration ended the program in which U.S. officials would be helping search for the remains in part because of security concerns for our own forces there.

Can you describe kind of what you’re looking for from the North that could resume those kind of operations — joint operations, and what steps you needed and how close you are to maybe doing that?”

Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency | White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with the White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A.. | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

MR. MCKEAGUE: So for 10 years, we operated between 1996 and 2005, over time conducting 33 joint activities with the North Koreans. Security is primarily our responsibility for our personnel. We also pay attention to communications — having communications abilities as well as having an ability to medevac our personnel should they get hurt.

What we would be looking for from the North Koreans is, again, a commitment from them that communications, medical evacuation requirements can be met, and more importantly, that we can conduct these joint operations in a collaborative way, as we had done for 10 years.

It all comes down, back into 2005, to their behavior on the international stage. The President, rightfully so, was concerned that their nuclear activities, their missile activities, were countermanding and counterproductive to our joint operations, which is why we suspended —

QUESTION: “So it’s more of the tone and the bigger geopolitical talks that are going on? Or is it specifics about being in the field that you’re really looking at right now?”

MR. MCKEAGUE: Both. So, Secretary Pompeo, in getting a reaffirmation from the North Koreans last month, affirmed that they do want to establish communications with us and to conduct joint operations. We have not started those negotiations. We will do so. It is on a separate track.

However, as you well pointed out, it could be drawn into the greater geopolitical stream. But for now, we’re treating it as a military-to-military contact, but more importantly, as a humanitarian endeavor that’s separate and distinct from anything else.

And, by the way, the 45 countries that we work with all rightfully recognize this as a humanitarian endeavor, including countries like Russia and China, where we have tremendous cooperation with them.

SECRETARY SANDERS: John.

John | White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

QUESTION JOHN: “Thank you, Sarah. Gentlemen, the recent death of former Congressman Bill Hendon of North Carolina brought back a lot of the rehashing of serious charges he made that those who were in Vietnam, either as prisoners or dead, were not fully accounted for. Has the book finally been closed on those Americans who served in Vietnam and were prisoners of war?”

MR. MCKEAGUE: It has. So, right now, there are close to 1,700 — 1,600 that remain missing and unaccounted for. Within that set of unaccounted for is what we call “last known alive.” It’s a small subset of individuals who, for whatever reason, were seen alive at a certain point during the war and will remain unaccounted for.

Our priority with the Vietnamese is to get at that subset — small subset. I think it’s down to 25 — not necessarily prisoners of war, but again, last known alive at the time that they were seen.

SECRETARY SANDERS: We’ll take one last question.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

QUESTION: “Real quick. Of the remains in the 55 boxes, can we confirm for a fact that all of them are human remains? Or are we still questioning that?”

DR. BYRD: “Yes, we did a cursory inspection of the remains in Wonsan before we loaded them onto our military aircraft just to ensure that at least some of what was in each box was human. When we got to Osan, in South Korea, we spent two days going through every box in detail, conducting what we call a field forensic review. The purpose of that review is to ensure that every item is consistent with being human. And if there were any animal remains, we would have pulled them at that point. As it was, we did not find any animal remains.”

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders briefs the Global Press with Director Kelly McKeague, of the Defense for POW and MIA Accounting Agency; Dr. John Byrd, the Defense POW and MIA Accounting Agency Laboratory Director; and Dr. Timothy McMahon, Director of DOD DNA Operations at The White House West Wing’s James S. Brady Press Briefing Room on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at 2:48 P.M. EDT , in Washington, DC, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

QUESTION: “And a quick follow-up. Do we have any idea how many people that we’re looking at yet?”

DR. BYRD: “No, we don’t. You know, there is a scientific process to estimate that. And I wish it were very fast, because I think a lot of people would really like to know. The families would love to know that information. But unfortunately, it’s going to take months of analysis to start to get a refined estimate.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Sorry, just one last question. Kristen.”

QUESTION: “Thank you. Do you have a timeline for bringing back more remains? And can you characterize what it has been like to work with the North Koreans on this particular part of this process? Have they been working with you in good faith every step of the way?”

DR. BYRD: “Okay, so the first question, as Mr. McKeague mentioned, we’re in the process of planning next steps. So we can’t say we have any timeline today for bringing back more remains. We’re hopeful that we will be in the not-too-distant future.

I will say, though, in terms of having worked there — I worked there in the past, during the 1996 to 2000 — five years. I spent a lot of time in the field there. And then I went into Wonsan with our team on July 27th, and there was a very different feel to it this time. It was a much more friendly, welcoming, and collegial approach this time compared to the way it used to be.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Thank you, Director.

Looking ahead to next week, Ambassador Bolton will meet with officials in Israel and Ukraine, as well as with his Russian counterpart in Geneva as a follow-up to the Helsinki Summit to discuss a range of important national security issues.

Lastly, we extend our prayers to the families of those injured and deceased after the tragic bridge collapse in Genoa, Italy, as well as to the victims of this morning’s attack in London.

The President condemns this horrible attack on innocent civilians and stands ready to provide assistance to the United Kingdom.

And with that, I’ll take your questions. Jonathan.

QUESTION: “Sarah, what we’ve heard from the President via Twitter, Omarosa, describing her as “crazed,” a “crying lowlife,” a “dog” — is this any way for a President to talk about any American, let alone somebody that he hired and made the highest-ranking African American woman that served in his White House?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I think the President is certainly voicing his frustration with the fact that this person has shown a complete lack of integrity, particularly by the actions following her time here at the White House.”

QUESTION: “But why did he hire her? I mean, why did he hire somebody he’s describing as a “dog,” as a “lowlife”?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Look, the President wanted to give her a chance. And he made clear, when General Kelly came on and he voiced concerns that this individual didn’t have the best interests of the White House and the President and the country at heart, the President said, do what you can to get along; and if you can’t, he gave him full authority to carry out the decision to let her go.

Steve.”

QUESTION STEVE: “What is the strategy in continuing to respond to the charges in this book? Why doesn’t he just ignore it?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Look, I think he’s made, again, the frustrations — I think all — not only those of us here in the White House, but frankly, I think most of America would be happy to ignore. Unfortunately, the individuals in this room continue to create a large platform for somebody they know not to have a lot of credibility, for someone they, frankly, refused to give a platform to when they worked here at the White House.

It wasn’t until this individual started to negatively attack this President and this administration, and try to tear this entire place down, that she received the type of platform and rollout that she’s getting.

I think it would be great if every single person in this room, and every single person in the administration, never had to talk about this again, and we actually got to focus on the real policies and the real things that not matter just to people in this building but certainly all Americans — African Americans, Hispanics, and everybody in between. I think that would be the best thing that we could certainly do for our country.

Jill.”

QUESTION: “Thank you, Sarah. What do you say to critics who see his attacks on Omarosa as part of a pattern of insulting prominent African Americans, people he’s taken — criticized recently — Don Lemon, Maxine Waters. He’s claimed that football players protesting racial injustice don’t know what they’re protesting.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Look, the President — this has absolutely nothing to do with race, and everything to do with the President calling out someone’s lack of integrity. The idea that you would only point a few of the things that the President has said negative about people that are minorities — the fact is, the President is an equal opportunity person that calls things like he sees it. He always fights fire with fire. And he certainly doesn’t hold back on doing that across the board.”

QUESTION: “And then, have you signed an NDA?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I’m not going to get into the back-and-forth on who has signed an NDA here at the White House. I can tell you that it’s common in a lot of places for employees to sign NDAs, including in government, particularly anyone with a security clearance.

Annie.”

QUESTION: “Me?’

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Yeah. Unless there’s another Annie back there.” (Laughs.) “I don’t know.”

QUESTION: “The President said that he kept Omarosa —”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Jon may be happy to go by Annie if that means he gets to take your question. But —”

QUESTION: “The President said he kept Omarosa on despite complaints from her colleagues because she was personally supportive of him and said nice things about him.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Sorry, I can’t hear you.”

QUESTION: “He said he kept her on despite complaints about her behavior because she was personally supportive of him and said nice things about him. Is that true of any other officials that are working in this White House right now?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I’m not aware of that.

Justin.”

QUESTION: “Since you don’t want to talk about Omarosa, I have a bunch on Turkey that hopefully you’ll let me great through.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “A bunch? I don’t know — we’ll do our best.”

QUESTION: “Do you have a reaction to President Erdoğan calling for a ban on U.S. electronics, like iPhones? And would the President encourage a similar ban on Turkish products by Americans?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I certainly don’t have a policy announcement on that front at this point.”

QUESTION: “And in sort of the same vein, there was a report from our colleague at Reuters that the U.S. is warning Turkey of increased pressure. So I’m wondering if you have details on how that was conveyed, what additional steps might look like, and if the U.S. would take additional steps before the hearing for the detained American pastor on October 12th.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “How the information from Turkey was received, or how the information from the United States to Turkey?”

QUESTION: “From the United States.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Well, I can tell you that, at the Turkish Ambassador’s request — as you know, Ambassador John Bolton met with the Ambassador of Turkey yesterday here at the White House and continued to raise and point out the concerns that we have.”

QUESTION: “One last one. The President encouraged Israel’s government to release a Turkish citizen in July. And did that contribute to his frustration with Erdoğan in not releasing this American pastor?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Certainly the President has a great deal of frustration on the fact that Pastor Brunson has not been released, as well as the fact that other U.S. citizens and employees of diplomatic facilities have not been released. And we’re going to continue to call on Turkey to do the right thing and release those individuals.

Saagar.”

QUESTION: “Thanks, Sarah. Does the President or this White House believe that it is a violation of Department of Justice protocol if the Special Counsel’s investigation goes beyond September 1st?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I’m not going to say that we would say necessarily a specific violation. But I think we’ve been very clear that not only do we, but all the American people, want this to wrap up.

John.”

QUESTION: “Thank you, Sarah. Two questions on Turkey. As the relationship between the President and President Erdoğan grows pestiferous, my question very simply is: Are we going to see the restoration of the readouts on calls between the President and other world leaders? That was terminated on the day after President Erdoğan’s election. And although we know that the President made a congratulatory call to him, there have been no readouts since. Is that going to be restored?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Certainly we’ll continue to keep you all posted, not just on calls with Turkey but other head-of-state calls as well, and provide readouts when we have them.

Dave.”

QUESTION: “Thanks, Sarah. The Taliban in Afghanistan, this week, has been on a surprise offensive that have killed about 100 Afghan Security Forces, a couple dozen civilians as far as we know. The President was visiting with the 10th Mountain Division yesterday at Fort Drum. They’ve served in Afghanistan. Does this new offensive — is he still committed to his strategy that he outlined a year ago for Afghanistan, or does this new offensive give him the idea that maybe a different approach might be needed?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Certainly no announcements or changes in policy from the President’s rollout last August.

Kristen.”

QUESTION: “Sarah, have you asked the President if he’s ever used the N-word?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “The President addressed that question directly via Twitter. I would refer you back to him. I can certainly say I’ve never heard him use that term or anything similar.”

QUESTION: “But have you — have you asked him directly, Sarah?

SECRETARY SANDERS: The President — I didn’t have to, because he addressed it to the American people —

QUESTION: “You haven’t asked him?

SECRETARY SANDERS: — all at one time.

QUESTION: “Why haven’t you asked him directly?

SECRETARY SANDERS: Again, the President answered that question directly on Twitter earlier today.

QUESTION: “Can you stand at the podium and guarantee the American people will never hear Donald Trump utter the N-word on a recording in any context?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: I can’t guarantee anything, but I can tell you that the President addressed this question directly. I can tell you that I’ve never heard it. I can also tell you that if myself or the people that are in this building — serving this country every single day, doing our very best to help people all across this country, and make it better — if at any point we felt that the President was who some of his critics claim him to be, we certainly wouldn’t be here.

This is a President who is fighting for all Americans; who is putting policies in place that help all Americans, particularly African Americans. Just look at the economy alone. This President, since he took office, in the year and a half that he’s been here, has created 700,000 new jobs for African Americans. That’s 700,000 African Americans that are working now that weren’t working when this President took place.

When President Obama left, after eight years in office — eight years in office, he had only created 800 — or 195,000 jobs for African Americans. President Trump in his first year and a half has already tripled what President Obama did in eight years. Not only did he do that for African Americans but for Hispanics; 1.7 million more Hispanics are working now. This is a President who cares about all Americans, who is committed to helping them, and is putting policies in place that actually do that.

Kevin.”

QUESTION: “Just to be clear —

MS. SANDERS: Sorry, Kristen, I’m going to go ahead to Kevin.

Kevin, go head.

QUESTION: “Go ahead.

QUESTION: “Just to be clear: You can’t guarantee it?

MS. SANDERS: Look, I haven’t been in every single room. I can tell you the President has addressed this directly. He’s addressed it directly to the American people. And I can tell you what the focus and the heart of the President is, and that’s on helping all Americans.

And certainly this is somebody who has been in business for decades, and you’re just now hearing some of these outrageous accusations after the fact he’s dealt with people all over the world. It wasn’t until he became a candidate for President that you started to hear some of these salacious and ridiculous claims. And certainly, I think, if you look at the actions that this President has taken, certainly the policies that he’s enacted, you can see the heart of who he is and you can see exactly what he has done and the type of President and person he is.

Kevin.”

QUESTION KEVIN: “Thank you, Sarah. Just a very quick one on something that Omarosa said today. She called the President “unfit” — “mentally unfit” for the office. As someone who worked with her, how surprised are you at the level of her animus toward this President and toward this White House?

And if I could follow up.”

MS. SANDERS: I’m certainly — I think like most people that worked with her — very disappointed that she would go to such a self-serving, and somebody who blatantly cares more about herself than our country, to make up some of these outrageous claims and accusations. Look, she worked here for a year and didn’t have any of these things to say. In fact, everything she said was quite the opposite — and not just the year that she worked, but the time that she spent on the campaign trail. And I think it’s really sad what she’s doing at this point.

QUESTION: “If I could follow very quickly. I wanted to ask you, just very briefly, we read earlier this afternoon that the Trump campaign has made an arbitration action against Omarosa. And I’m just curious — and I know they’re separate entities — but is it likely that the White House is considering pursuing something in the way of possible action toward Omarosa for violating a non-disclosure?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I certainly wouldn’t be able to comment on any potential ongoing legal matter.

Major.”

QUESTION MAJOR: “Sarah, a moment ago, you said one of the motives for Omarosa was to “tear this entire place down.” What do you mean by that? And do you have — or others here have ongoing concerns that, while she was here, she taped other conversations that could either be damaging to the reputation of this White House or revelatory as something you’d rather keep private?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: I think the greatest concern we have is the lack of integrity that this individual has shown.”

QUESTION: “One thing that — one other thing, Sarah. She played a tape recording of a conversation with the President. Do you have any doubt that that is an authentic conversation that she had with the President?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I don’t.”

QUESTION: “Okay, then related to that — the President said he was “unaware” in that conversation. Is that — was that a truthful representation of what he knew at the time? Or was he just trying to make Omarosa feel better?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “As I said moments ago, the President had had a direct conversation with General Kelly; asked him to try to work things out. If it didn’t, he gave General Kelly the full authority to make decisions about hiring and firing, including with respect to Omarosa.”

QUESTION: “So he was making her feel better? Because he knew what had happened and he knew he’d approved it.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “On the timing, I think is — he knew that it was certainly a possibility. But as to the fact whether or not General Kelly had called the President, I don’t think he had at that point.

Steve.”

QUESTION STEVE: “Yes, Sarah. Repeatedly, we’ve heard the President declare that the so-called “Islamic State terror group” has been practically vanquished, especially in Iraq and Syria. Well, the Defense Department yesterday — the lead inspector general for Operation Inherent Resolve, in fact — says that their forces are estimated to be anywhere between 28,600 and 31,600 fighters, which would be about the number that they had at their peak. So has ISIS been practically vanquished?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Certainly we know that the caliphate has been practically destroyed. Certainly there are — continue to be ISIS fighters, and that’s why we continue to take all of those threats seriously and look for ways every single day to defeat them and protect American people and our allies.”

QUESTION: “Can I go back to the race question again? I get that you can cite things — statistics that might be positive statistics for policies the President has done vis-à-vis African Americans and other minorities.

What do you say to people who look at the pattern of comments that the President has made, specifically about African Americans, and feel like he is singling those folks out because of their race? Are they missing something? Are they deluding themselves? What do you say to them?

Because there are lots of people out there who look at the pattern and say, “Yes, he says negative things about a lot of people but there seems to be a particular pattern of singling out African Americans and commenting in particular about their intelligence, or lack thereof, and their looks.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I certainly don’t think so. I think, as I said, the President has said similar things about a number of individuals, certainly, that are not African American or any other minority. I can simply talk to you about the policies and the person that the President is.

I think if, again, the person that a lot of his critics say he is certainly wouldn’t have been in business with him for decades. Certainly you wouldn’t have had Bill and Hillary Clinton — they attended his wedding. A number of Democrats begged him for campaign contributions. I mean, if they were who he said he was, why did they have these relationships with him?

I think it is very convenient that these accusations started once the President became someone running for office. He has shown time and time again, through his actions, through his policies, that he wants to be a President for all Americans; that he wants to do everything he can to make America better and not just for a certain group of people, but for everybody.

I think that has made a number of comments about plenty of people. And to try to single that out to one group is, frankly, silly, because I think if you did a comparison, he’s probably got a lot more nasty things out there about some other people.”

QUESTION: “Do you think all of those are appropriate too?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I’m sorry?”

QUESTION: “Do you think that — I mean —”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Look, the President is somebody who’s always going to fight fire with fire. This is something that isn’t new. And it’s something the American people knew when they voted for him, and they overwhelmingly elected him to be the President of the United States. And since he took office, he has governed in a way that is helping all Americans.

Frankly, if we want to look at who’s creating divisions in the country, I think the media has done more to divide this country — certainly far more than this President ever has — by elevating people like the author of this book, by focusing on a sparsely attended rally instead of all of the policies that this administration and that this President are enacting that helping people — not just on the economy but on school choice, on prison reform that’s disproportionately affected African Americans and Hispanics. This is a President who is governing to help all Americans. And I think we’d all be better off if the media gave that just a little bit more attention.

Jon.”

QUESTION JON: “Yeah, thanks a lot, Sarah. You expressed how you feel about Omarosa since the publication of this book. How was she viewed by fellow staff members here at the White House while she worked here? Did she pull her own weight? Was she viewed as untrustworthy? Did you trust her? I’m just trying to get a sense about whether your view of her has changed with publication of this book.”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Certainly I’ve expressed some disappointment. I’m not going to get into a back-and-forth on personal feelings that I have with a former colleague. I think that the focus not only of my time here, but of this administration, is looking forward in how we can actually implement policies that matter to the American people — not who liked who in the building behind me.

Brian.”

QUESTION BRIAN: “Different topic, if you can, and then a follow-up. When — the first time the Mueller investigation indicted some Russians, this administration sanctioned those Russians. The 12 that were recently indicted — the 12 Russian nationals — does this administration plan to also level sanctions against them?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I don’t have any announcements on that front right now.”

QUESTION: “Quick follow-up. You said you would like everyone to stop talking about this particular subject, including the administration. So are you saying you would like the President to stop tweeting about Omarosa?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “I think if the media continues to give it wall-to-wall coverage, the administration, in some cases, will be forced to respond. But I think it would be better off for all of us to walk away and focus on some things that matter.

Raquel.”

QUESTION RAQUEL: “Hi, Sarah. Thank you so much. I want to ask question about Secretary Mattis. He’s in Brazil right now, and visiting other countries in South America. And how much does his trip have to do with countering the growing presence of China in the region?

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Certainly, we have a lot of shared values with the countries that he’s visiting. We would always like to be the priority partner for those countries. And we hope that those relationships will continue to develop. And we’ll keep you posted if he has any updates from the trip.

Last question. Steven.”

QUESTION STEVEN: “Bearing in mind that the Trump campaign’s announcement that it’s pursuing arbitration of Omarosa necessitates attention and a major national focus, can we talk — and can I ask you once more about the practice of signing people to nondisclosure agreements? Because let me ask you what it says about the expressions of loyalty, or lack thereof, of people who work behind that wall. Why do people need to be contractually obligated to forever after, in perpetuity, never say anything negative about the President, any member of his family, any product they should produce? Why is that necessary?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Look, again, it’s common in a lot of —”

QUESTION: “Of corporations. To protect the corporate interest. What’s the particular necessity of this?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “Also, despite contrary opinion, it’s actually very normal. And every administration prior to the Trump administration has had NDAs, particularly specific for anyone that had a security clearance. This White House is certainly no —”

QUESTION: “To protect national security and classified —”

QUESTION: ” — the distinction between classified and non —”

QUESTION: “(Inaudible) in keeping someone like Omarosa silent? Because right now, what the Trump campaign is doing is he’s forcing her, essentially, to defend herself and potentially even pay damages. Why is that necessary?”

SECRETARY SANDERS: “That’s a question you would have to ask the Trump campaign. That’s certainly not a question that I can answer as somebody that’s in an official government capacity.

Thanks so much guys. Have a great day.”


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The White House
Tuesday, August 14, 2018

 

FIRST LADY MELANIA TRUMP BEGINS WHITE HOUSE 2018 CHRISTMAS SEASON

 

 

Apply to volunteer

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

 

WHITE HOUSE 2018 CHRISTMAS SEASON

Apply to volunteer to help decorate the White House, please click here.

Apply as a volunteer for White House entertainment opportunities, please click here.



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The White House
Tuesday, August 14, 2018

 

Vice President Pence Delivers Remarks at an America First Policies Event

 

 

Vice President Pence Delivers Remarks at an America First Policies Event

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

 

CINCINNATI, OHIO – Vice President Mike Pence presents remarks at an America First Policies Event in Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S.A. on Tuesday, August 14, 2018.


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Monday, August 13, 2018

President Donald J. Trump On The “John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019

President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America delivers remarks on the “John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019” on Monday, August 13, 2018 at Fort Drum, New York, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

 

 

President Trump and Vice President Pence Present Remarks at a Signing Ceremony for H.R. 5515, the “John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

 

FORT DRUM, NEW YORK – President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America participates in a Signing Ceremony for H.R. 5515, the “John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019.” President Trump will deliver remarks on the “John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019” at 2:30 PM on Monday, August 13, 2018 at Fort Drum, New York, U.S.A..

President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America delivers remarks on the “John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019” on Monday, August 13, 2018 at Fort Drum, New York, U.S.A… | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

 

“REBUILDING OUR MILITARY: President Donald J. Trump is continuing to deliver on his pledge to rebuild our military by signing legislation authorizing $716 billion for our national defense.

  • President Trump is signing the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2019, authorizing $716 billion for national defense.
    • The Administration worked in close partnership with Congress to complete the NDAA.
    • This is the earliest in the year Congress has completed an NDAA in over two decades.
  • The NDAA helps develop a more lethal and resilient force, and grows the size of our forces by authorizing an increase of 15,600 troops across the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps.
    • The NDAA authorizes end strengths of 487,500 in the Army; 335,400 in the Navy; 186,100 in the Marine Corps; and 329,100 in the Air Force.
  • The NDAA authorizes $7.6 billion to procure 77 F-35 fighter jets and $24.1 billion to fund the construction of 13 new battle force ships and accelerates funding for several future ships.

HONORING OUR SERVICE MEMBERS: The Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 NDAA honors President Trump’s commitment to our service members and their families.

  • President Trump and Congress are honoring our Nation’s duty to our service members by authorizing a 2.6 percent military pay raise, the largest pay raise in nine years.
    • The NDAA also extends special pay and bonuses for those in high demand fields.
  • The NDAA will address the employment challenges facing military spouses by enhancing the My Career Advancement Program.

READYING FOR ALL THREATS: The FY 2019 NDAA will help ensure that our military is ready and able to defend against the threats of today and tomorrow.

  • The NDAA supports key aspects of President Trump’s National Defense Strategy, which will better prepare our Nation for the strategic competition it is facing today.
  • The NDAA will increase training and improve readiness, authorizing 20 Combat Training Center Rotations for the Army as well as improvements to the readiness of naval surface ships.
  • The NDAA takes positive steps that are in line with President Trump’s commitment to maintaining a strong and resilient defense and manufacturing industrial base.
  • Furthering President Trump’s goal of developing our warfighting capabilities in space, the NDAA authorizes the United States Space Command to be established under the United States Strategic Command.

STANDING WITH ALLIES AND PARTNERS: The FY 2019 NDAA authorizes funds for critical operations and defense engagements and activities with our allies and partners.

  • The NDAA keeps faith with President Trump’s full-hearted support of Israel, authorizing $500 million for the co-development and co-production of missile defense systems.
  • Funds authorized by the NDAA will help the United States and its partners continue the fight to destroy ISIS, including $850 million to train and equip Iraqi Security Forces.
  • The NDAA will strengthen the efforts of the United States to bolster the defenses of its European partners, including $250 million dedicated to security assistance for Ukraine.”

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The White House
Thursday, August 9, 2018

 

President Donald J. Trump On Prison Reform

 

 

President Donald J. Trump Participates in a Roundtable with State Leaders on Prison Reform

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

 

 

BEDMINSTER, NEW JERSEY – President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America participates in a Roundtable with State Leaders on Prison Reform at the Trump National Golf Club of Bedminster, New Jersey on Friday, August 9, 2018.

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President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America participates in a Roundtable with State Leaders on Prison Reform at the Trump National Golf Club of Bedminster, New Jersey on Friday, August 9, 2018.| White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

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Remarks of President Trump at Prison Reform Roundtable

Trump National Golf Club
Bedminster, New Jersey

August 9, 2018 4:22 P.M. EDT

 

President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America participates in a Roundtable with State Leaders on Prison Reform at the Trump National Golf Club of Bedminster, New Jersey on Friday, August 9, 2018. | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr / TheWhiteHouseSpin.com/E Media Inc.

THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA DONALD J. TRUMP: “Well, thank you very much, everybody, for being here in Bedminster. We’ve had a lot of work. We’ve done a lot of work. They’re renovating the White House. It’s a long-term project, and they approved it years ago. And I said, well, I guess this would be a good place to be in the meantime. So they’re doing a lot of work at the White House. I miss it. I would like to be there. But this is a good way of doing it.

We have some very outstanding people with us. And I’ll make a few remarks. This is largely about prison reform — and other subjects — but largely about prison reform.

So I want to thank the governors — Matt Bevin, Phil Bryant, Doug Burgum, Nathan Deal, and John Bel Edwards — for being here today. Been friends of mine. We’ve been, I could say, in wars, but we’ve been on the same side of the wars. That’s always good.

I want to thank you also to Attorney General Pam Bondi and Ken Paxton. And Ken just filed a very interesting lawsuit, which I think is going to be very successful. I hope it’s going to be successful. I also want to recognize Secretary Rick Perry and Secretary Alex Acosta. Thank you both. Rick, thank you very much.

We are doing some great things with healthcare, Alex.”

SECRETARY ACOSTA: “We are.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “And you’re doing some wonderful things with energy. I hope that project comes along that we’re talking about. It’s going to help a lot of people. A lot of jobs are going to be created.”

SECRETARY PERRY: “Indeed.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “So I know you’re working on it.

I look forward to hearing from each of you about your experiences with prison reform and the lessons that we’ve learned. I know how Matt, in particular, you have been working so hard. Phil, you’ve been working long and hard on it — harder than anyone would know. But I can tell you, my administration feels very, very strongly about it.

One of the single most important things we’re doing is to help former inmates in creating jobs. We’re creating so many jobs that former inmates, for the first time, are really getting a shot at it, because they’re weren’t sought and now they are being sought because our unemployment rate is so low — historically low — 50 years.

Now, our economy is booming. Businesses are hiring and recruiting workers that were previously overlooked. They’re being hired. It’s a great feeling. It’s a great thing that we’ve all accomplished. We’ve created a lot of jobs in the states. And I guess I’ve helped you a lot on a national basis.

We’ve created 3.9 million more jobs since Election Day — so almost 4 million jobs — which is unthinkable. If I would have said that during the campaign, only a few of the people around this table would have believed me. But they would have. 3.9 million jobs since Election Day. That’s pretty incredible.

We’ve added more than 400,000 manufacturing jobs since the election. Manufacturing employment is now growing faster than at any time than it has in three decades, over 30 years. Through the Pledge of America’s Workers, launched just last month, almost 5 million Americans will receive enhanced career training and opportunities.

And I want to thank Ivanka Trump for having done an incredible job on that. She’s really worked on it. It’s something very important to her.

I’ve really — and I’ve said it to a lot of people: Jared — I want to thank Jared for what’s happening on prison reform, because you’ve really been leading it. It’s something very close to your heart.

And as I’ve said before, we hire Americans. We want to hire and treat our Americans fairly. You know, for many years, jobs have been taken out of our country. We’ve lost our businesses. We’ve lost the hiring abilities that we had. Not anymore. Now those companies are coming back; they’re coming roaring back — to your state, to your state. They’re coming back faster than anyone thought even possible.

Our first duty is to our citizens, including those who have taken the wrong path but are seeking redemption and a new beginning. That’s people that have been in prison, and they come out and they’re having a hard time. They’re not having such a hard time anymore.

We’ve passed the First Step Act through the House, and we’re working very hard in the Senate to refine it and pass it into law. We think we’ll be successful in that regard. The bill expands vocational educational programs to eligible federal inmates so that more of them can learn a trade. And that’s what we’re doing. We’re teaching them trades. We’re teaching them different things that they can put into good use, and put into use to get jobs.

I recently met with Chairman Grassley and other members of Congress to discuss the bill. We also agreed that we must be tough on crime, especially on criminals and trafficking of drugs, and lots of other trafficking. We have a trafficking problem, including human trafficking. We’re very, very tough on that. And that’s going to remain tough, or even tougher.

We must strengthen community bonds with law enforcement, including cities like Chicago that have been an absolute and total disaster. We’ll be talking about Chicago today because that is something that, in terms of our nation, nobody would believe it could be happening. They had 63 incidents last weekend and 12 deaths.

That’s bad stuff happening, and probably, I guess, you have to take from the leadership. That’s called bad leadership. There’s no reason, in a million years, that something like that should be happening in Chicago.

We want every child to grow up in a safe neighborhood surrounded by families that are loving and helpful, and with a path to great education and a lifelong career.

I want to thank everybody for being here. And I think what we’ll do, while the media is here, maybe we’ll just go around the room real quickly and we’ll introduce yourselves. And these are people that have really worked hard on prison reform — and lots of other things, but on prison reform. And that’s largely what this meeting is about.

Governor? Please.”

GOVERNOR DEAL: “Well, thank you, Mr. President. I appreciate the opportunity to be here. We are very pleased with what’s happening in Georgia. We have seen, since I became Governor, a 10-percent decrease in violent crime in our state, a 20-percent overall decrease in crime. We have seen our African American percentage in our prison system drop significantly. Black American — black males has dropped almost 30 percent.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “That’s great.”

GOVERNOR DEAL: “Black females dropped about 38.2 percent. Our African American commitments to our prison is at the lowest level it has been since 1987. And in states like ours, we have a disproportionate number of minorities in our prison versus our population as a whole.

We have found that reentry is a vital part of this. We find that — I did have a question I asked; I said, “What’s the most common characteristic of those in our prisons?” The answer was, 70 percent of them never graduated from high school.

So we immediately concentrated on that. We have significantly beefed up our GEDs. We’ve also brought a private charter school into our system to teach them, give them a real high school diploma. We found that if you give them a blue-collar skill, you reduce your recidivism rate by 24 percent. If you give them just the education of getting a high school diploma, it’s reduced by 19 percent.

So we have been very successful. We’re pleased about it. And we’re pleased to share whatever information we have that might be helpful.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Good. Thank you, again. Thank you very much.

Pam?”

BONDI: “President, Pam Bondi, Attorney General of Florida. Thank you for doing this. As a career prosecutor, you see people who go to prison and get out of prison, and can’t find a job. And how do we expect people to succeed without being able to get a job? And you were just in Tampa — thank you for that — Tampa Bay Tech, supporting jobs for young people.

And that’s what’s so important, is reentry and being able to get a job, and training people on how to be successful. And something we did in Florida shortly after I got elected was we decoupled — if you were a convicted felon, you couldn’t get an occupational license. So how do we expect you to succeed?

So thank you for everything you’re doing, Mr. President.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Good. Thank you, Pam. Thank you very much.”

GOVERNOR EDWARDS: “Mr. President, John Bel Edwards. And I will tell you, in Louisiana, we are proud of the work we’ve done. It’s been sentencing reform, prison reform, and a real focus on reentry. And for the first time in 20 years, I can tell you, Louisiana does not have the highest incarceration rate in the nation today.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Good. Good.”

GOVERNOR EDWARDS: “And it’s paying dividends for us, and we’re reinvesting the savings —”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Who does?”

GOVERNOR EDWARDS: “Oklahoma.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Really?”

GOVERNOR EDWARDS: “Yes, sir. But we are reinvesting the savings into our reentry program and also into victim services. So we’re excited about what we’re doing, and we’re looking forward to sharing that with you.”

PRESIDENT: “Great. Great. Thank you very much. Thank you, John Bel.

Please, go ahead.”

GOVERNOR BURGUM: “Mr. President, Doug Burgum, Governor of North Dakota. Thank you for coming to North Dakota last month. Great to have you there.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Things are looking good, aren’t they?”

GOVERNOR BURGUM: “Things are looking great thanks to a lot of policies from this administration and the great Cabinet that you have.

As you know, you can’t really separate, today, prison reform and our prison situation from addiction. In North Dakota, 100 percent of the women that are incarcerated in our prison system have a disease of addiction. Eighty-five percent of the men in our prison have disease of addiction. And we can’t solve a healthcare — a chronic healthcare problem with punishment. We’ve got to solve it — treat it like a disease and solve it that way.”

THE PRESIDENT: Right.

GOVERNOR BURGUM: And so I want to also thank you for the work that your administration is doing on the addiction front, because it ties directly back into this. And I think we’ve done a number of innovations we’ll be happy to share at this roundtable today. Thanks for inviting us.

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Good. Good.”

GOVERNOR BURGUM: “But, you know, in the end, we’re trying to create better neighbors, not better prisoners. Ninety-eight-and-a-half percent of the people that go to prison in North Dakota end up coming back out. And so we have to — when they’re there, like the other governors have talked about it, it’s education, it’s career skills, it’s treatment. Those are the things we have to focus on. If we can do that, we can turn people’s lives around and add people to the workforce. We know we need that because we got so many jobs open in this country.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Thank you very much, Governor.”

PAXTON: “Ken Paxton, Texas Attorney General. Thank you, Mr. President. This is obviously an important issue to Texas. I think it’s an important issue to the nation. And, Jared, I appreciate your passion for this issue.

In 2007, under the leadership of, I think, the greatest governor in my lifetime, who’s now the Secretary of Energy — is that the right department? — (laughter) — and the president of our top public policy foundation, Brooke Rollins, we passed legislation similar to what Congress is now looking at that has had a dramatic impact on our own ability to take people from prison and live productive lives.

And, you know, I could cite many statistics, but we were facing — spending $2 billion, and we didn’t spend the money. We put $241 million into treatment and to helping people find jobs. We’ve expanded that since, but it’s made a tremendous difference. We have not built any more new prisons since then. We’ve actually closed eight prisons. So it’s really made a difference, and I think it can make a difference for the nation. So I look forward to continuing the discussion.

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “How are you doing with your recently filed case? How’s that looking?”

PAXTON: “Well, we had a hearing yesterday, and I think it went quite well. Let’s see what the judge says. But we know we’re right on the law and we’re right on the Constitution. And so we’re confident things are going to go in the right way.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “It’s true. Okay. Thank you.”

GOVERNOR BRYANT: “Thank you, Mr. President. I’m Phil Bryant of Mississippi. In 2014, we began our “Right on Crime” program. We used all the things that Georgia has been successful with, and Texas. I called both of these governors and said, “Tell me how you did it.”

I’m a former law enforcement officer, and I worked undercover narcotics cases. I’ve been out there with the worst of the worst. I put a lot of people in jail, and some of it was difficult, particularly when I was state auditor and over 100 state-wide elected officials and government employees went to jail for white-collar crimes.

So we began a really strong program working with the PEW Institute of putting that workforce training program into effect, making sure we looked at addiction, mental health. Mental health challenges within the correctional facilities are obviously rampant. Also trying to make prisons a drug-free zone and a crime-free zone within that prison, so you can’t — your life can’t be threatened every day; you can’t be attacked in prison; you can’t have access to drugs and be rehabilitated.

And then finally, the faith-based organization. It takes a change of heart. I’ve been around a lot of people who are in jail, and if their hearts aren’t changed, their lives will not be changed. So prison ministries — all of those things that government doesn’t like to admit to that works —”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Right.”

GOVERNOR BRYANT: “— works. And so, when we bring faith back into the prison system, prisoners have hope again. And that worked better for us than anything we could have done — another reentry program, getting them jobs, getting their driver’s license, keeping them connected with their families so that they have something to work towards when they’re getting out of prison.

And I can tell you, I had to call a lot of my Republicans into the governor’s office and convince them to vote for this bill. And they were worried it was soft on crime. They were hesitant about what they were going to tell their people back home. And I said, “You tell them to call me.” Because crime is down 6 percent. We have 3,000 less inmates. We saved $40 million since 2014. And you can do the same thing. And, Jared, thank you for your leadership.”

KUSHNER: “Thank you.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Thank you, Phil.”

GOVERNOR BRYANT: Thank you, Mr. President.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Secretary?”

SECRETARY ACOSTA: “Mr. President, I’d like to make two key points. First, as you mentioned, the economy is doing incredibly well for the first time since we’ve been keeping records. We have more open jobs than we have people to fill these jobs.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Right.”

SECRETARY ACOSTA: “And so, these reentry programs are needed for the economy. We have jobs ready and waiting for individuals when they leave prison.

Second, I’d like to follow up on what some of you governors have said: These programs work. As you know, and others at the table know, I was U.S. attorney in Miami. And when you talk with the law enforcement communities, what they will tell you is that these programs foster public safety. When someone leaves prison, the best that could happen for them is for them to find a job. The best that can happen for society is for them to find a job and start contributing to society, rather than go back to the old ways of crime.

So this is very much a win-win for the individual, for the safety of the community, and for the economy of the nation. We have individuals that are going from a prison system, where the taxpayer is funding the system, to contributing members of society that are helping this economic growth.

And so we’re working with various governors. We put out a request for a proposal, and we got so many applications from various governors of programs that are very much outside the box, that — this fall, we intend to put out another request for proposals to fund another round of reentry efforts themselves.

I want to thank the governors, and I want to thank all that are working on this issue. It’s very important.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Well, you’ve been great, and your healthcare plan is going along beautifully. That is really doing something. It’s — are you surprised by the numbers you’re hearing?”

SECRETARY ACOSTA: “It is. Just this morning, I read an article mentioning a number of associations around the country — I believe one in Wisconsin, certainly one in Nevada — that are already forming these.

And just today, I was talking to some of the governors here about the various activity in their states. And so it’s moving very nicely.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “It’s been great. Thank you, Alex, very much. Thank you.

Rick. Go ahead, Rick.”

ROLLINS: “Well —”

SECRETARY PERRY: “Why don’t you go, Brooke?”

ROLLINS: “I would be — thank you so much, Mr. President. We’re so happy to be here. I tell you, I am overwhelmed and so encouraged. These governors are real innovators, and they’re entrepreneurs.

And what they have done is this idea of the laboratories of democracy that, in the states, we have moved so many issues forward that now, at the federal level — which I’m so honored to become part of your team — but at the federal level, we can now see what happened in the states, what’s working, what is basically lifting people to a better life — the forgotten men and women of this country.

And having lived it, in Texas, beside these two great men for more than a decade, we’ve seen firsthand how this changes lives, how it gives people second chances, how it puts communities back together, and keeps families together. So thank you for the opportunity.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Thank you. Good job you’re doing.”

ROLLINS: “I’m glad to be here.”

SECRETARY PERRY: “Mr. President, thank you for bringing her onboard. I think you’re seeing, on a daily basis, what a talent she is dealing with these issues that are really important.”

Two things that I want to share with the table and with you, and with the general public. And one is that it’s because of those tax policies, because of regulatory policies that you pushed through, we got more people working in America than ever before.” (Applause.)

“And you have to have that, because if these programs are to work when folks get out of prison, or if they don’t go to prison to begin with, then that’s our real goal.

And I want to share with these governors around here, every one of them are courageous. Because I heard it when we were doing this back in Texas, in the early and mid-2000s, that, you know, “Well, Perry, we thought you were tough on crime.” Nobody ever got me confused with being soft on crime. You know, I signed more execution orders than probably any governor in the history of this country. And that’s a sad thing, but it’s a fact.

So I’m not soft on crime. But I like to say we were smart on crime in Texas because we put these programs into place. And young people, whose lives would be destroyed if we sent them on to prison — and that’s where they really become professional criminals. And we never allowed that to happen; we gave them a second chance.

And so, Texans now really understand if we shut down eight prisons, saving some three-plus billion dollars a year in prison costs, and conservatives look at that now and go, “That was smart on crime.”

And, Pam, that’s what — that’s what people will say about you, Mr. President, is, number one, you’ve created this climate where people can have a job and have hope for the future.

And I’ll finish with this, is that you passed that piece of legislation that does — clearly reforms the prison system. And I will suggest to you, from my perspective, that sentencing reform is part of that as well.

And then you have the ability to show this country, and then these laboratories of innovation — you know, when Doug goes back up to North Dakota, and he’s puts in, for his state, the right programs, and it’s not top down, but you’ve sent the right message that, fellas, here’s the way to reform your prison system. We’re not going to be in the way. We’re not going to — we’re not going to be a hurdle for you, and you all figure out how to do it the rest of the way.

And this country can be incredibly proud of what they’re doing for the next generation of people to come along. And these governors are going to be a real key part of that.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Well, thank you, Rick. Very good. Thank you very much. How’s it going, energy-wise, would you say?”

SECRETARY PERRY: “I will tell you, I don’t know how it could be much better.” (Laughter.) “The people around the world, we’re selling LNG now into 30 countries on five continents.”

GOVERNOR EDWARDS: “A lot of it” (inaudible).

SECRETARY PERRY: “John, a lot out of Louisiana. Gas is headed to a lot of places.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “That’s right.”

SECRETARY PERRY: “Doug, number-two oil producer in the world — or, I should say, in the United States, only behind the state of Texas.” (Laughter.)

GOVERNOR BURGUM: We’re catching you.

SECRETARY PERRY: “Yes, sir.” (Laughter.) “And we want you to. Come on. Give us your best shot.”

“But things are going good, sir. I mean, it is a — massive jobs being created. We got an opportunity to — you know, I don’t want to get us off track here, but oil and gas infrastructure, if there’s one thing that we, collectively — and these governors will tell you that as well — that we’ll produce it; getting it out of this country is the challenge right now.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Well, we’ve become, as you know, number one in the world over just the last short period of time. So we’ve made it a lot easier, and yet environmentally perfect. Environmentally, really good.

But we’ve become number one in the world, and we’re now a net exporter, which nobody thought they’d ever hear. And we’re doing a lot of good things for a lot of other countries too.

So thank you very much. You’ve done a great job. Thank you.

Matt.”

GOVERNOR BEVIN: “Mr. President, I just want to thank you again for convening this — not just once, not just twice, but on multiple occasions. I had a chance to meet a number of folks around this table. A comment was made early on, I think by you in your introductory comments, about the fact that this is a war where people can be lined up on the same side.

And the most powerful thing about this, and something I hope those of you in the media appreciate: I look at guys like John Bel Edwards in Louisiana. Represents a different party than I do in Kentucky, in terms of our political affiliation, but this is something that we’re very much of like mind on. And I think this transcends anything political.

And it’s — and again, I tip my hat to you for not only on this issue, but on others, bringing things to the political forefront that aren’t political, that have historically been ignored because they weren’t political and nobody got any points politically by doing them, but that they were the right thing to do.

And as some who have gone around this table have touched on, it isn’t just the fact that it’s smart on crime or that it’s financially prudent — because it is all those things — but it’s the right thing to do. Just the human dignity of giving people — this is a land of second chances and of opportunity to rebuild your life.

And you are giving us, through this conversation and the kind of things you’re pushing from the federal level, the encouragement from the bottom up to give millions and millions of Americans a chance at redemption. And it’s, I think, the greatest gift we can offer people.

And it’s something that, again, for all the economic reasons we’ve just mentioned, we desperately need. These are able-bodied men and women — 95 to 97 percent of the 2 million currently in prison are going to get out. And what are they going to do? Are we going to give them a path to stay out? Or are they going to go right back in?

And some of the things we’ve done in Kentucky is literally start training programs inside of the prison system. Because one of the things we do — I have two twins that are going off to college in the next couple of weeks — and every one of them, from the beginning they get to college, they have a guidance counselor that’s helping them chart their path.

I truly think it’s something we need to do within our prison system, because we’re spending just as much for every person in a prison system as we are for a kid in a college classroom. And why not give them a path for them personally to make sure they don’t come back to this place, but that they go out and become productive, tax-paying citizens who contribute and become good mothers and fathers and community members? These are the kind of things that this will afford us the chance to do.

And I — again, I truly appreciate this. It’s something, personally, that I have a passion for. And for you and your administration — and Jared, really, kudos to you, because you have done such a stellar job of bringing this to the forefront and gathering us together. And I’m grateful to the two of you for making this possible.”

PRESIDENT TRUMP: “Well, thank you, Matt. And I have to say, we have tremendous political support. It a little bit surprises me. I thought that — when we started this journey about a year ago, I thought we would not have a lot of political support; we would have to convince people. We have great political support. You see what’s happening. People that I would least suspect are behind it 100 percent. So that’s a good thing.

Thank you all for being here. Thank you all very much. Thank you. Thank you very much.”



USA Intelligence

‘Show of Force’ Displayed

White House Press Briefing by Press Secretary Sarah Sanders and National Security Officials | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr/TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com/E Media Inc.

TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com

 

 

 

 

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The White House
Friday, August 10, 2018

 

Vice President Mike Pence On Space Force

 

Vice President Mike Pence Presents Remarks on Space Force

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

 

WASHINGTON DC – Vice President Mike Pence of the United States of America presents remarks on new USA Space Force.

Vice President Mike Pence On the Future of the U.S. Military in Space

The Pentagon

Arlington, Virginia

11:17 A.M. EDT

 

THE VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA MIKE PENCE: “Secretary Mattis, Deputy Secretary Shanahan, General Selva, General Goldfein, members of the Armed Forces of the United States of America, and all the men and women of the United States Department of Defense who each and every day oversee the greatest military in the history of the world: Thank you for all you do every day for the American people. (Applause.)

It is my great honor, Mr. Secretary, to join you here today at the Pentagon. And let me begin by bringing greetings from your Commander-in-Chief, who has from the very earliest days of this administration proved himself to be a great champion of the Armed Forces of the United States, committed to strengthening American security here on Earth and in space. I bring greetings from the 45th President of the United States of America, President Donald Trump. (Applause.)

In his Inaugural Address to the nation, President Trump proclaimed that the United States stands, in his words, “at the birth of a new millennium, ready to unlock the mysteries of space.”

And since day one of our administration, this President has kept his promise to restore America’s proud legacy of leadership in space, believing that space is essential to our nation’s security, prosperity, and our very way of life.

Last year, after it had lain dormant for nearly a quarter-century, President Trump revived the National Space Council to reinvigorate and coordinate space activities across our government.

It is my great honor, as Vice President, to serve as the Chairman of the National Space Council. And I’m pleased to report that President Trump has already signed three new space policy directives to reorient our space program toward human exploration, unleash America’s burgeoning commercial space companies, and safeguard our vital space assets with new space traffic management policy.

But as Commander-in-Chief, President Trump’s highest priority is the safety and security of the American people. And while, too often, previous administrations all but neglected the growing security threats emerging in space, President Trump stated clearly and forcefully that space is, in his words, “a warfighting domain, just like…land, [and] air, and sea.”

And just as we’ve done in ages past, the United States of America, under his leadership, will meet the emerging threats on this new battlefield with American ingenuity and strength to defend our nation, protect our people, and carry the cause of liberty and peace into the next great American frontier.

In 1939, at the start of the Second World War, the U.S. Army Air Corps was still a fledgling organization. But as Nazi air forces bombed their way from Warsaw to London, our military commanders took decisive action then to meet that new threat head on.

By 1945, the American military had nearly 30 times the number of planes, and 85 times the number of pilots and support crews compared to just six years earlier.

America and our allies emerged victorious from World War II because of the strength of our armed forces, and because our armed forces adapted to meet the emerging threats of the day. We knew that airpower had forever changed the nature of war, so we marshaled the resources and the will to build the most powerful air force the world had ever seen.

And just two years after that terrible conflict, our nation created a new branch of service to secure American dominance in the skies for generations to come with the creation of the United States Air Force.

Now the time has come to write the next great chapter in the history of our armed forces, to prepare for the next battlefield where America’s best and bravest will be called to deter and defeat a new generation of threats to our people and to our nation. The time has come to establish the United States Space Force.

And that’s what brings us here today. Seven weeks ago, President Trump directed the Department of Defense “to immediately begin the process necessary to establish a Space Force as the sixth branch of the armed forces.”

The President made it clear that our ultimate objective is to create a new branch of our military that is separate from, and equal to, five other branches.

Today, the Department of Defense will release a report outlining the first stages of our administration’s plan to implement the President’s guidance and turn his vision into a reality.

This report reviews the national security space activities within the Department of Defense, and it identifies concrete steps that our administration will take to lay the foundation for a new Department of the Space Force.

Now, to be clear, the Space Force will not be built from scratch because the men and the women who run and protect our nation’s space programs today are already the best in the world. And since the dawn of the Space Age, America has remained the best in space. (Applause.)

Over the past 60 years, the United States has assembled the largest and most sophisticated constellation of military and intelligence satellites in the world.

We’ve pioneered the technology to leverage American power in space here on Earth, and give our warfighters the intelligence that they need, and give our intelligence community the information they need to maintain a strategic advantage wherever our warfighters are operating.

Across this Department and our intelligence agency, there are literally tens of thousands of military personnel, civilians, and contractors operating and supporting our space systems, and together they’re the eyes and the ears of America’s warfighters around the globe. And they do a remarkable job.

I’ve seen their work firsthand. I’ve traveled across the country to meet with the men and women who are fighting for America’s future in space in my first year and a half on this job, from the airmen of the 50th Space Wing at Schriever Air Force Base, whose fleet of surveillance, navigation, and communication satellites increase the agility, precision, and effectiveness of our armed forces; to the engineers of the Missile Defense Agency at Redstone Arsenal in Alabama who are forging the next generation of rockets to strengthen our missile defense; to the many other bases and facilities across the country where our men and women in uniform work together with our intelligence community and our allies to protect our people, our nation, and our interests around the world.

And over the past 18 months, President Trump and our entire administration have taken decisive action to strengthen American power in space as well.

President Trump recently signed the largest investment in our national defense since the days of Ronald Reagan. (Applause.) And that new Defense budget included new resources for two cutting-edge military communications satellites and nearly $1 billion for our space defense programs. And today, we renew the President’s call on the Congress of the United States to invest an additional $8 billion in our space security systems over the next five years.

The men and women of this Department have also taken historic steps to secure American leadership in space. At the direction of Secretary Mattis, the Department of Defense is fielding a new generation of jam-resistant GPS and communications satellites and new missile-warning satellites that are smaller, tougher, and more maneuverable than ever before.

And while these steps have been vital to our national defense, they’re really only a beginning. They’re only a beginning of meeting the rising security threats our nation faces in space today and in the future. As President Trump has said, in his words, “It is not enough to merely have an American presence in space; we must have American dominance in space.” And so we will. (Applause.)

And that’s precisely why we’re beginning the process of establishing a Space Force as the sixth branch of our armed forces. Just as in the past, when we created the Air Force, establishing the Space Force is an idea whose time has come.

The space environment has fundamentally changed in the last generation. What was once peaceful and uncontested is now crowded and adversarial. Today, other nations are seeking to disrupt our space-based systems and challenge American supremacy in space as never before.

For many years, nations from Russia and China to North Korea and Iran have pursued weapons to jam, blind, and disable our navigation and communications satellites via electronic attacks from the ground.

But recently, our adversaries have been working to bring new weapons of war into space itself. In 2007, China launched a missile that tracked and destroyed one of its own satellites — a highly provocative demonstration of China’s growing capability to militarize space.

Russia has been designing an airborne laser to disrupt our space-based system. And it claims to be developing missiles that can be launched from an aircraft mid-flight to destroy American satellites.

Both China and Russia have been conducting highly sophisticated on-orbit activities that could enable them to maneuver their satellites into close proximity of ours, posing unprecedented new dangers to our space systems.

Both nations are also investing heavily in what are known as hypersonic missiles designed to fly up to five miles per second at such low altitudes that they could potentially evade detection by our missile-defense radars. In fact, China claimed to have made its first successful test of a hypersonic vehicle just last week.

China and Russia are also aggressively working to incorporate anti-satellite attacks into their warfighting doctrines. In 2015, China created a separate military enterprise to oversee and prioritize its warfighting capabilities in space.

As their actions make clear, our adversaries have transformed space into a warfighting domain already. And the United States will not shrink from this challenge. (Applause.) Under President Trump’s leadership, we will meet it head on to defend our nation and build a peaceful future here on Earth and in space.

America will always seek peace in space as on the Earth. But history proves that peace only comes through strength. And in the realm of outer space, the United States Space Force will be that strength in the years ahead. (Applause.)

Now, the report the Department of Defense will release today, that Secretary Mattis just referenced, represents a critical step toward establishing the Space Force as the sixth branch of our armed forces. It actually identifies four actions that we will take to evolve our space capabilities, and they are built on the lessons of the past.

We all remember the hard lesson learned in the early 1980s, as the tragic debacle of Desert One took place. Eight American patriots fell in the line of duty while trying to rescue their fellow Americans who were being held hostage in Iran.

In the wake of that failed mission, America resolved to ensure that our joint warfighters would always have the training, coordination, and leadership they needed to accomplish their missions. And the steps that our nation took in the years that followed paved the way for the creation of the United States Special Operations Command.

Since that time, this vital combatant command has directed our Special Operations Forces to become the most effective and lethal fighting force in the history of the world. (Applause.) Our Special Operations Forces, through this unified command, have been defending our security and advancing interests, as they do to this very hour, in every corner of the globe.

Along those same lines, today’s report calls for the creation of a new unified combatant command for space: The United States Space Command.

This new command structure for the physical domain of space, led by a four-star flag officer, will establish unified command and control for our Space Force operations, ensure integration across the military, and develop the space warfighting doctrine, tactics, techniques, and procedures of the future.

The second step this report calls for is the creation of an elite group of joint warfighters specializing in the domain of space who will form the backbone of the nation’s newest armed service: Space Operations Force.

Just like our Special Operations Forces, a Space Operations Force will draw men and women from across the military and will grow into their own unique and cohesive community. They’ll support the combatant commands by providing space expertise in times of crisis and conflict.

Third, this report calls for the creation of a new joint organization, the Space Development Agency, that will ensure the men and women of the Space Force have the cutting-edge warfighting capabilities that they need and deserve.

While our adversaries have been busy weaponizing space, too often we have bureaucratized it. And over time, our ability to adapt to new and emerging threats has been stifled by needless layers of red tape.

The Space Development Agency will break free from ineffective and duplicative bureaucratic structures to focus on innovation, experimentation, and forging the technologies of the future.

The men and women of the Department of Defense have pioneered some of the most groundbreaking discoveries in our armed forces that literally have revolutionized our national defense in times of need, from General Schriever’s creation of the intercontinental ballistic missile to Admiral Rickover’s development of the Navy’s nuclear enterprise.

And now we must do our part to make bold breakthroughs, strengthen America’s industrial base, and deliver the cutting-edge warfighting capabilities faster than our adversaries could ever imagine. And that’s exactly what Americans will do. (Applause.)

Finally, this report calls for clear lines of responsibility and accountability to manage the process of standing up and scaling up the United States Department of the Space Force.

Creating a new branch of the military is not a simple process. It will require collaboration, diligence, and above all, leadership. As challenges arise, deadlines approach, there must be someone in charge who can execute, hold others accountable, and be responsible for the results.

So we will create a single civilian position, reporting to the Secretary of Defense, to oversee the growth and expansion of this new branch of service. This position will be a new Assistant Secretary of Defense for Space. And this leader will be key to the critical transition to a fully independent Secretary of the Space Force in the years ahead.

President Trump and I are grateful — truly grateful to Secretary Mattis for this Department’s diligence in preparing this report. And our administration will soon take action to implement these recommendations, with the objective of establishing the United States Department of the Space Force by the year 2020.

Ultimately, Congress must act to establish this new Department which will organize, train, and equip the United States Space Force.

Our administration is already working with leaders in the Congress to do just that. We’re building bipartisan support for our plan, working closely with committee counterparts like Congressman Mac Thornberry, and Congressman Adam Smith, and Congressman Mike Rogers, and Congressman Jim Cooper.

Next February, in the President’s budget, we will call on the Congress to marshal the resources we need to stand up the Space Force.

And before the end of next year, our administration will work with the Congress to enact the statutory authority for the Space Force in the National Defense Authorization Act.

Our nation’s armed forces have always been the vanguard of advancing American leadership here on Earth and beyond. And the Space Force is the next and the natural evolution of American military strength.

The first American rockets in space were launched by our military. The first American satellites to orbit the Earth were on reconnaissance missions, peering behind the Iron Curtain. The first Americans to step forward to venture into the unknown were the world’s greatest aviators and test pilots from the Navy, the Air Force, and the Marine Corps.

And the next generation of Americans to confront the emerging threats in the boundless expanse of space will be wearing the uniform of the United States of America as well. (Applause.)

And I’ll promise you, your Commander-in-Chief is going to continue to work tirelessly toward this goal, and we expect you all to do the same.

And to all the men and women of this Department: This is the moment. Now is the time to act quickly, using all the tools at your disposal to lead our nation forward with President Trump’s vision to meet the challenges that lie ahead.

There is much work to do. Success will demand the very best of each of you. So be bold, be creative, unencumbered by the past or the status quo. And remember, when it comes to defending our nation and protecting our way of life, the only thing we can’t afford is inaction. The American people deserve our very best, and they will have it.

As the President will discuss in further detail in the days ahead, the United States Space Force will strengthen our security, it will ensure our prosperity, and it will also carry American ideals into the boundless expanse of space.

While other nations increasingly possess the capability to operate in space, not all of them share our commitment to freedom, to private property, and the rule of law. So as we continue to carry American leadership in space, so also will we carry America’s commitment to freedom into this new frontier. (Applause.)

So this is the moment. Now is the time to do as Americans have always done in ages past, to lead with strength and a pioneering spirit into the future. And under the leadership of President Trump, our Commander-in-Chief, we will take the first bold steps to ensure our security on Earth and in outer space with renewed American strength.

And as we embark, we do so with faith. Faith in all of you who have answered the call to serve in the uniform of the United States of America at such a time as this in the life of our nation. Faith to all the incredible civilian personnel who serve here in the Department of Defense with equal devotion to our nation.

And we do so with that other kind of faith as well. And just as generations of Americans have carried those who have taken to the skies in the defense of freedom borne upon their prayers, I want to assure all of you, who will be called to this enterprise, that you can be confident. You can be confident that you will go with the prayers of millions of Americans who will claim on your behalf, as generations have claimed before, those ancient words, that if you “rise on the wings of the dawn, if [you] settle on the far side of the sea,” even if you go up to the heavens, “even there His hand will guide [you], His right hand will hold [you] fast.” And He will hold fast this great nation in the great beyond.

So thank you for your service to the country for all of you who have been called to serve in our armed forces. With your unwavering commitment, with the courage of our men and women in uniform, with the continued support of the American people, with the vision and leadership of our Commander-in Chief, and with God’s help, I know we will give America the defense she needs here on Earth and in the outer reaches of space.

Thank you. And God bless you. And God bless the United States of America. (Applause.)


TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com

 

 

 

 

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The White House
Monday, August 13, 2018

 

Cracking Down on Synthetic Opioid Sales

By: Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III, Attorney General of the United States of America

 

“The United States is facing the deadliest drug crisis in American history. The latest statistics suggest that approximately 72,000 Americans lost their lives to drug overdoses in 2017 — the highest drug death toll in a single year and the fastest single-year increase in that death toll in American history.

Meanwhile, millions of Americans are living with the consequences of a family member’s addiction or an addiction of their own. It is incredible but true that drug overdoses are now the leading cause of accidental death.

Sadly, Florida knows the consequences of this crisis all too well.

Drug overdose deaths increased 47 percent statewide from 2015 to 2016, compared to 21 percent nationwide. In just one year, we lost nearly 2,800 Floridians to overdoses involving opioids – an increase of nearly 1,000 deaths.

And as we all know, these are not numbers—these are moms, dads, daughters, spouses, friends and neighbors.

For example, remember that around 2 a.m. on New Year’s Day 2017, a man and a woman were found dead outside their car on Interstate 4 near Daytona Beach. Their three sons — ages 2, 1, and less than a year old – sat in the back seat, crying. The couple had overdosed on illicitly made fentanyl.

Unfortunately, there are many more tragic stories like this in America today.

But we at the Department of Justice are not going to accept the status quo. Ending the drug crisis is a top priority of President Donald Trump and his administration.

President Trump has a comprehensive plan to end this national crisis. He has negotiated and signed bipartisan legislation to spend $4 billion this year to address opioid abuse. He has launched a national awareness campaign about the dangers of opioid abuse. And he has set the ambitious goal of reducing opioid prescription rates in America by one-third in three years.

Prevention and treatment are two critical elements in stopping this crisis of addiction.

Law enforcement is a critical pillar of President Trump’s Opioids Plan. By putting crooked traffickers and crooked doctors, pharmacists, manufacturers, and distributors behind bars — going after the suppliers, not the users suffering from drug addiction — we prevent those criminals from committing more crimes and spreading addiction. That saves lives.

One example of how law enforcement saves lives can be seen in Manatee County.

Like many parts of this country, Manatee County experienced massive increases in opioid deaths in 2015 and 2016.

In response, federal prosecutors began prosecuting synthetic opioid sales, regardless of the amount of drugs involved, resulting in 45 prosecutions. Deaths started to go down.

From the last six months of 2016 to the last six months of 2017, overdose deaths dropped by 70 percent in Manatee County. The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office went from responding to 11 overdoses a day to an average of one a day.

These are remarkable results. I believe that many other parts of the country—where the drug epidemic is at its worst—need solutions like this one and can benefit from this proven strategy.

That is why I have begun Operation Synthetic Opioids Surge.

Under Operation SOS, I am ordering our prosecutors in 10 districts with some of the highest overdose death rates to prosecute every case of illicit synthetic opioid distribution—no matter how small.

When it comes to synthetic opioids, there is no such thing as a small case. Three milligrams of fentanyl can be fatal. That’s equivalent to a pinch of salt. It’s not even enough to cover Lincoln’s face on a penny. Depending on the purity, you could fit more than 1,000 fatal doses of fentanyl in a teaspoon.

I understand that this more aggressive posture will require a lot more work for prosecutors, who are already dealing with an unprecedented epidemic. That is why, as they implement this effective strategy, I am sending them reinforcements.

Last month, I sent more than 300 new assistant U.S. attorneys to districts across America. It was the largest prosecutor surge in decades.

Now I am sending another new prosecutor to each of these 10 districts where we will implement the Manatee County strategy. Having served as a federal prosecutor for 14 years, I know what a difference that can make.

The people of Florida should be grateful for the outstanding service of law enforcement officers in Manatee County. They are a great example of how law enforcement can make a big difference in a short period of time.

I believe that, along with the Trump administration’s other law enforcement and public health efforts, Operation SOS will weaken drug distribution networks, reduce illicit fentanyl availability and save lives.”


TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com

 

 

 

 

 

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The White House
Monday, August 6, 2018

 

President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

Photo: Uhuru Kenyatta
Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta arrives arrives to attend The Queen’s Dinner during The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) at Buckingham Palace on April 19, 2018 in London, England. | WPA Pool/Getty Images Europe

WASHINGTON DC – Press Secretary Sarah Sander of the United States of America released the following statement on the visit of President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya:

President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America meets the President Kenyatta and First Lady of Kenya and May 26, 2017.| Photo Source: https://twitter.com/UKenyatta/status/868198983956668416
President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America meets the President Kenyatta and First Lady of Kenya and May 26, 2017.| Photo Source: https://twitter.com/UKenyatta/status/868198983956668416
President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America meets the President Kenyatta and First Lady of Kenya and May 26, 2017.| Photo Source: https://twitter.com/UKenyatta/status/868198983956668416
President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America meets the President Kenyatta and First Lady of Kenya and May 26, 2017.| Photo Source: https://twitter.com/UKenyatta/status/868198983956668416

“President Donald J. Trump will welcome President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya to the White House on August 27, 2018. Kenya is a vital partner of the United States, and President Trump looks forward to discussing ways to broaden the strategic partnership based on our shared democratic values and mutual interests. The meeting between the two leaders will reaffirm the longstanding relationship between the United States and Kenya as a cornerstone of peace and stability in Africa and the broader Indo-Pacific region. President Trump and President Kenyatta will explore ways to bolster trade and investment between the two countries, while strengthening security cooperation.”

Amid teargas and clashes in Nairobi for Kenyatta Swearing-In at Kenya, President Uhuru Kenyatta affirmed the oath of office during his inauguration ceremony at Kasarani Stadium with Margaret Gakuo Kenyatta his wife. /


President Uhuru Kenyatta
Amid teargas and clashes in Nairobi for Kenyatta Swearing In Kenya, President Uhuru Kenyatta takes oath of office during his inauguration ceremony at Kasarani Stadium in Nairobi, Kenya, on November 28, 2017. President Uhuru Kenyatta vowed to be the leader of all Kenyans and work to unite the country after a bruising and drawn out election process that ended with his swearing-in. | Photo Credit: AFP PHOTO / SIMON MAINA




 

President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya takes oath of office during his inauguration ceremony at Kasarani Stadium on November 28, 2017 in Nairobi. Kenyatta was sworn in for a second term as president of Kenya, after a bruising election process that has left the nation deeply divided. An election victory in August was overturned by the Supreme Court of Kenya, forcing Kenyatta to face a re-run, which was boycotted by the opposition. | AFP PHOTO / SIMON MAINA
First Lady of Kenya Margaret Gakuo Kenyatta is the second first lady of the Kenyatta family.
Photo Source: Kenyans.co.ke “A supportive wife to President Uhuru Kenya, Margaret accompanied her husband to Hague when he was facing the charges against humanity after 2007/2008 post-election violence. This move earned her admiration from many Kenyans and Uhuru’s supporters around the world.” | Photo Source: Kenyans.co.ke

The First Lady of Kenya assumed office after the inauguration of her husband on ninth of April 2013 at Kasarani. In Nairobi, Kenya, on November 28, 2017, President Uhuru Kenyatta vowed to be the leader of all Kenyans and work to unite the country after a bruising and drawn out election process that ended with his swearing-in.

President Kenyatta and Margaret Kenyatta were high school friends who later became a couple in 1989. President Kenyatta first met Margaret through her older brother Maina Gakuo.

They later started began a relationship and got married in 1991, at Holy Family Basilica in Nairobi. From 2013 to date, they have been Kenya’s first family.

First Lady Margaret Kenyatta is an alumnus of Kianda School, St. Andrews School (an elite school in Molo), Turi and Kenyatta University.

 

First Lady of Kenya Margaret Gakuo Kenyatta is the second first lady of the Kenyatta family.
| Photo Source: answersafrica.com

Biography of Kenya’s First Lady, Parents

 

Margaret Gakuo Kenyatta was born Margaret Wanjiru Gakuo on April 8, 1964. Margaret is the youngest child of her father, Dr Ephantus Njuguna Gakuo and her mother Magdallena Gakuo, a German citizen in Germany. Dr Ephantus Njuguna Gakuo worked focused on the development of Kenyan Railways. Dr. Gakuo was the first African managing director of Kenya Railways after taking over from GPG Mackay in 1964.

Prior to Dr. Gakuo’s committed services to the Railways, he lectured for three years at Delhi University. Dr Gakuo obtained his BA and MA degrees in Commerce from the Delhi School of Business in 1955. He obtained a PhD in Economics from Freiberg University in 1960.

Dr Gakuo taught for a year in Germany before returning to his home country Kenya – not just with his doctorate degree but also with a German wife – Magdallena – who would become the mother of First Lady Margaret Gakuo- Kenyatta of Kenya and her brother, Maina Gakuo. Margaret and Maina lost their father in 2005.

 

First Lady Margaret Kenyatta meets former President Barack Obama as introduced by her husband President Kenyatta of Kenya. “I love the gold embroidery on her blue outfit. It’s a sign of novelty. It’s sharp but still simplistic. It effuses a cool mood, from a psychological perspective. It was a lovely choice, which worked quite well when she was meeting U.S. President Obama.”
Photo Source: https://mpasho.co.ke/10-times-first-lady-margaret-kenyatta-nailed-fashion-sense-photos/5/ | Photo Source: answersafrica.com

Lady Margaret Meets Obama

 

Margaret Kenyatta is an alumnus of Kianda School, St. Andrews School (an elite school in Molo), Turi and Kenyatta University.

“First Lady Margaret Kenyatta is described as a powerful but simple personality whose skills and charisma are tagged the secret ingredients for President Uhuru Kenyatta’s successful campaigns. “The most striking characteristics of Margaret is her down to earth and simple personality.”

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Margaret Kenyatta were high school friends who later became a couple in 1989. While answering questions from Kenyans in a live chat on his official Facebook page, President Uhuru Kenyatta revealed he first met Margaret through her older brother Maina Gakuo.

Uhuru and Margaret later started off a relationship and finally got married in 1991, at Holy Family Basilica in Nairobi. From 2013 to date, they have been Kenya’s first family.”

President Kenyatta and Margaret Kenyatta Photo Source: eDaily Kenya

 

The First Family of Kenya – The Kenyatta’s Photo Source: https://softkenya.com/kenya

Kenya’s First Family – Children

 

President Kenyatta and Margaret’s first child, Jomo, is married to his long-time girlfriend Fiona Achola Ngobi, the beautiful granddaughter of the late Luo political giant, Dr William Odongo Omamo. Fiona is of Luo, Kikuyu and Ugandan ancestry and works as an accountant at a local bank.

Jomo was educated at Hilton College and Michael House in KwaZulu Natal Midlands in South Africa.

President Kenyatta and Margaret’s second son, Jaba Muhoho has his own clothing line in major towns in some African countries. Like his mother, Jaba has a very special fashion sense that helped him win the 2014 Showcase Designer of the Year award in the Emerging Designer category during the Nairobi Expo.

Margaret’s only living daughter Ngina was named after her paternal grandmother, Mama Ngina Kenyatta. Ngina who has a degree in international relations and politics, now serves as the director of the Kenyatta Foundation.

Ngina is following in her father’s steps, often spotted together with him. Moreover, “Ngina also loves partying and spending with her friends and cousins.”

 

First Lady Margaret Kenyatta of Kenya
Margaret Kenyatta is one of Kenya’s first ladies that will not be forgotten in a hurry. She is the wife of Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, the fourth President of the Republic of Kenya.
As subtle as she is in discharging her duties, she commands a great deal of respect in the country. Many have described her as the powerhouse of Uhuru Kenyatta who was recently inaugurated for the 3rd consecutive time as Kenyan president.

Quick Facts On Kenyan First Lady Margaret Kehyatta

 

* “Margaret Kenyatta’s father-in-law, Jomo Kenyatta, was Kenya’s founding father and the first president of the Republic of Kenya. He served as the president of the East Africa country from 1964 to 1978.”

First Lady Margaret Kenyatta of Kenya presents remarks at the 9th Stop Cervical, Breast and Prostate Cancer in Africa Conference (SCCA) that was held between 19th and 21st July at KICC, she chose the coolest look ever. The embroidery on her dress was too lovely. The matching color necklace and her neatly done hair was her ultimate go for look.

* “On the humanitarian level, Margaret passionately campaigns for a lesser child mortality rate in Kenya; this earned her 2014, UN person of the year.”

* “The amiable Kenyan first lady will be remembered for the Beyond Zero Campaign, a nationwide health initiative but most targeted for mothers in the grassroots. It was launched on January 24, 2014, to improve the maternal and child health care/outcomes in the country.”

* “Her Beyond Zero Campaign has so far raised funds for over 30 mobile clinics in Kenya.”

First Lady Margaret Kenyatta of Kenya. Photo Source: https://mpasho.co.ke/

* “Margaret’s dedication to the Beyond Zero campaign is rooted in her own past pain of losing a baby about 2 decades ago. The Kenyan first family lost their second daughter immediately after childbirth.”

* “Kenyan first lady made history in 2014 when she became the first African First lady to complete a 42kilometress race.”

* “Margaret Kenyatta often makes a fashion statement that is hard to ignore with her choice of simple but outstanding outfits. Be it a formal, semi-formal or informal occasion, the beautiful first lady is always classy. She has never suffered a wardrobe malfunction.”

 

First Lady Margaret Kenyatta of Kenya during her tour of the source of River Nile where she was accompanied by the Ugandan First Lady. She rocked a nice coat, matching blouse and pair of trousers and comfy flat shoes. The look was one of her best just yet.
First Lady Margaret Kenyatta of Kenya.
Prince Harry meets with First Lady Margaret Kenyatta of Kenya.
Photo Source: http://nowto.tv/2018/07/26/current-news


TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com

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THE ROYAL WEDDING

OF

PRINCE HARRY & MEGHAN MARKLE

 

Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr/TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com/E Media Inc.

 

 

Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr/TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com/E Media Inc.

 




 

This is the largest audience ever to witness a book party, period!

Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway attends a book signing for “The Briefing,” by former White House press secretary Sean Spicer, at the Trump International Hotel in Washington on July 26. (Astrid Riecken for The Washington Post)

 

WASHINGTON DC – Sean Spicer’s book party Thursday night at the Trump International Hotel in downtown Washington on July 26

“The hotel’s management described its strategy to capitalize on the president’s popularity. It markets the hotel to Republican and conservative groups that embrace Trump’s politics but takes care not to solicit business from fringe groups that would embarrass the president. Trump supporters in red “Make America Great Again” caps get a chance to rub elbows with White House officials against an American flag backdrop at the Benjamin Bar, where a signature concoction of winter wheat vodka, oysters and caviar goes for $100. “While we can’t quantify how much business we have received because of politics, neither can we quantify how much we have lost,” Patricia Tang Patricia Tang Trump International Hotel director of sales and marketing. Tang is an industry veteran who has worked for the Four Seasons, Ritz-Carlton, Mandarin Oriental and other luxury brands. , director of sales and marketing, said in an interview.”

White House aides turn out for Sean Spicer book party at Trump hotel.

“Getting through the crowd gathered in the soaring lobby of the posh hotel to toast Spicer and his new book, “The Briefing,” was like navigating a jungle. “

– Heart grabbing at the first page. Not a waste of your time.
OK, you are right, I am hooked on White House drama. Take a read anyway . . . l am intrigued by Presidential politics and the maneuvers of great people that serve to transform humanity and global wealth for good.





 

HAVE FAITH IN GOD

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Travel At Its Best: Price * Experience * Entertainment

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Experience Excellence and Elegance!

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Monday, August 6, 2018

 

Trump Administration Begins Spin Campaign On Russia & Iran


President Donald J. Trump on the Reimposition of United States Sanctions with Respect to Iran

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

President Donald J. Trump signs an EO on Iran Sanctions in the Green Room at Trump National Golf Club Sunday, August 5, 2018, in Bedminster Township, New Jersey. | White House Photo by Shealah Craighead

BEDMINSTER, NEW JERSEY – “Today, the United States is taking action to reimpose nuclear-related sanctions with respect to Iran that were lifted in connection with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action of July 14, 2015 (the “JCPOA”). These actions include reimposing sanctions on Iran’s automotive sector and on its trade in gold and precious metals, as well as sanctions related to the Iranian rial. These measures will take effect on August 7, 2018.

 

All remaining United States nuclear-related sanctions will resume effective November 5, 2018. These include sanctions targeting Iran’s energy sector, including petroleum-related transactions, as well as transactions by foreign financial institutions with the Central Bank of Iran.

 

The United States is fully committed to enforcing all of our sanctions, and we will work closely with nations conducting business with Iran to ensure complete compliance. Individuals or entities that fail to wind down activities with Iran risk severe consequences.

 

I am pleased that many international firms have already announced their intent to leave the Iranian market, and several countries have indicated that they will reduce or end imports of Iranian crude oil. We urge all nations to take such steps to make clear that the Iranian regime faces a choice: either change its threatening, destabilizing behavior and reintegrate with the global economy, or continue down a path of economic isolation.

 

My actions today – including my signing of an Executive Order entitled “Reimposing Certain Sanctions with Respect to Iran” – are consistent with National Security Presidential Memorandum-11 of May 8, 2018, announcing the withdrawal of the United States from the JCPOA.

 

The JCPOA, a horrible, one-sided deal, failed to achieve the fundamental objective of blocking all paths to an Iranian nuclear bomb, and it threw a lifeline of cash to a murderous dictatorship that has continued to spread bloodshed, violence, and chaos.

 

Since the deal was reached, Iran’s aggression has only increased. The regime has used the windfall of newly accessible funds it received under the JCPOA to build nuclear-capable missiles, fund terrorism, and fuel conflict across the Middle East and beyond.

 

To this day, Iran threatens the United States and our allies, undermines the international financial system, and supports terrorism and militant proxies around the world.

 

By exiting the JCPOA, the United States is able to protect its national security by applying maximum economic pressure on the Iranian regime. To date, my Administration has issued 17 rounds of Iran-related sanctions, designating 145 companies and individuals. Since my announcement on May 8 withdrawing the United States from the JCPOA, my Administration has sanctioned 38 Iran-related targets in six separate actions. Reimposition of nuclear-related sanctions through today’s actions further intensifies pressure on Tehran to change its conduct.

 

As we continue applying maximum economic pressure on the Iranian regime, I remain open to reaching a more comprehensive deal that addresses the full range of the regime’s malign activities, including its ballistic missile program and its support for terrorism. The United States welcomes the partnership of likeminded nations in these efforts.

 

The United States continues to stand with the long-suffering Iranian people, who are the rightful heirs to Iran’s rich heritage and the real victims of the regime’s policies. We look forward to the day when the people of Iran, and all people across the region, can prosper together in safety and peace.”

 

Trump Administration’s Reasoning On Iran

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

PRESIDENT DONALD J. TRUMP IS REIMPOSING SANCTIONS LIFTED UNDER THE Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action IRAN DEAL

 

WASHINGTON DC – By protecting US National Security the Trump administration hopes to impact the Iranian dictatorship and insure Iran ends its sponsorship of terrorism and continuous aggression around the world and the Middle East. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) does not impact the two very strategic goals. Therefore, within this context the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action can not achieve global peace nor liberate Iranian citizens.

President Trump is continuing a US policy of standing up to the Iranian regime’s aggression, and the United States is fully enforcing sanctions. President Trump hopes to end the exploitation of the global financial system by Iran. Moreover The Trump administration is committed to de-funding terrorism, ending the promotion of ruthless regimes, stabilizing all regions of the world, and end the abuse of human beings in Iran.

 

“Our policy is based on a clear-eyed assessment of the Iranian dictatorship, its sponsorship of terrorism, and its continuing aggression in the Middle East and all around the world.” – President Donald J. Trump

 

BY REIMPOSING TOUGH SANCTIONS: President Donald J. Trump’s Administration is taking action to sanction Iran and nullify the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

  • President Trump made clear when he ended United States participation in the JCPOA that his Administration would be reimposing tough sanctions on the Iranian regime.

o In connection with the withdrawal from the JCPOA, the Trump Administration laid out two wind-down periods of 90 days and 180 days for business activities in or involving Iran.

  • Consistent with President Trump’s decision, the Trump Administration will be reimposing specified sanctions after August 6, the final day of the 90-day wind-down period.
  • On August 7, US sanctions will be reimposed on:

o The purchase or acquisition of United States bank notes by the Government of Iran.

o Iran’s trade in gold and other precious metals.

o Graphite, aluminum, steel, coal, and software used in industrial processes.

o Transactions related to the Iranian rial.

o Activities relating to Iran’s issuance of sovereign debt.

o Iran’s automotive sector.

  • The remaining US sanctions will be reimposed on November 5, including sanctions on:

o Iran’s port operators and energy, shipping, and shipbuilding sectors.

o Iran’s petroleum-related transactions.

o Transactions by foreign financial institutions with the Central Bank of Iran.

  • The Trump Administration will also relist hundreds of individuals, entities, vessels, and aircraft that were previously included on sanctions lists.

 

BY ENSURING FULL ENFORCEMENT:

  • The Iranian regime has exploited the global financial system to fund its malign activities.

o The regime has used this funding to support terrorism, promote ruthless regimes, destabilize the region, and abuse the human rights of its own people.

  • The Trump Administration intends to fully enforce the sanctions reimposed against Iran, and those who fail to wind down activities with Iran risk severe consequences.
  • Since the President announced his decision on May 8 to withdraw from the JCPOA, the Administration has sanctioned 38 Iran-related targets in six separate actions.

 

BY PROTECTING OUR NATIONAL SECURITY: The Trump Administration nullifies JCPOA based on a belief that it was defective at its core and failed to guarantee the safety of the American people.

  • President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Iran deal upheld his highest obligation: to protect the safety and security of the American people.
  • The Iranian regime only grew more aggressive under the cover of the JCPOA and was given access to more resources to pursue its malign activities.
    • The regime continues to threaten the United States and our allies, exploit the international financial system, and support terrorism and foreign proxies.
  • The Administration is working with allies to bring pressure on the Iranian regime to achieve an agreement that denies all paths to a nuclear weapon and addresses other malign activities.

~

 


Executive Order Reimposing Certain Sanctions with Respect to Iran

EXECUTIVE ORDER

– – – – – – –

Reimposing Certain Sanctions With Respect to Iran

 

 

“By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.) (NEA), the Iran Sanctions Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-172) (50 U.S.C. 1701 note), as amended (ISA), the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010 (Public Law 111-195) (22 U.S.C. 8501 et seq.), as amended (CISADA), the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012 (Public Law 112-158) (TRA), the Iran Freedom and Counter-Proliferation Act of 2012 (subtitle D of title XII of Public Law 112-239) (22 U.S.C. 8801 et seq.) (IFCA), section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (8 U.S.C. 1182(f)), and section 301 of title 3, United States Code, in order to take additional steps with respect to the national emergency declared in Executive Order 12957 of March 15, 1995,

 

I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, in light of my decision on May 8, 2018, to cease the participation of the United States in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action of July 14, 2015 (JCPOA), and to re-impose all sanctions lifted or waived in connection with the JCPOA as expeditiously as possible and in no case later than 180 days from May 8, 2018, as outlined in the National Security Presidential Memorandum-11 of May 8, 2018 (Ceasing United States Participation in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action and Taking Additional Action to Counter Iran’s Malign Influence and Deny Iran All Paths to a Nuclear Weapon), and to advance the goal of applying financial pressure on the Iranian regime in pursuit of a comprehensive and lasting solution to the full range of the threats posed by Iran, including Iran’s proliferation and development of missiles and other asymmetric and conventional weapons capabilities, its network and campaign of regional aggression, its support for terrorist groups, and the malign activities of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and its surrogates, hereby order as follows:

 

Section 1. Blocking Sanctions Relating to Support for the Government of Iran’s Purchase or Acquisition of U.S. Bank Notes or Precious Metals; Certain Iranian Persons; and Iran’s Energy, Shipping, and Shipbuilding Sectors and Port Operators. (a) The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State, is hereby authorized to impose on a person the measures described in subsection (b) of this section upon determining that:

 

(i) on or after August 7, 2018, the person has materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services in support of, the purchase or acquisition of U.S. bank notes or precious metals by the Government of Iran;

 

(ii) on or after November 5, 2018, the person has materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services in support of, the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), Naftiran Intertrade Company (NICO), or the Central Bank of Iran;

 

(iii) on or after November 5, 2018, the person has materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services to or in support of:

 

(A) any Iranian person included on the list of Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons maintained by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (SDN List) (other than an Iranian depository institution whose property and interests in property are blocked solely pursuant to Executive Order 13599 of February 5, 2012); or

 

(B) any other person included on the SDN List whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to subsection (a) of this section or Executive Order 13599 (other than an Iranian depository institution whose property and interests in property are blocked solely pursuant to Executive Order 13599); or

 

(iv) pursuant to authority delegated by the President and in accordance with the terms of such delegation, sanctions shall be imposed on such person pursuant to section 1244(c)(1)(A) of IFCA because the person:

 

(A) is part of the energy, shipping, or shipbuilding sectors of Iran;

 

(B) operates a port in Iran; or

 

(C) knowingly provides significant financial, material, technological, or other support to, or goods or services in support of any activity or transaction on behalf of a person determined under section 1244(c)(2)(A) of IFCA to be a part of the energy, shipping, or shipbuilding sectors of Iran; a person determined under section 1244(c)(2)(B) of IFCA to operate a port in Iran; or an Iranian person included on the SDN List (other than a person described in section 1244(c)(3) of IFCA).

 

(b) With respect to any person determined by the Secretary of the Treasury in accordance with this section to meet any of the criteria set forth in subsections (a)(i)-(a)(iv) of this section, all property and interests in property that are in the United States, that hereafter come within the United States, or that are or hereafter come within the possession or control of any United States person of such person are blocked and may not be transferred, paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt in.

 

(c) The prohibitions in subsection (b) of this section apply except to the extent provided by statutes, or in regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order, and notwithstanding any contract entered into or any license or permit granted prior to the effective date of this order or, where specifically provided, the effective date of the prohibition.

 

Sec. 2. Correspondent and Payable-Through Account Sanctions Relating to Iran’s Automotive Sector; Certain Iranian Persons; and Trade in Iranian Petroleum, Petroleum Products, and Petrochemical Products. (a) The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State, is hereby authorized to impose on a foreign financial institution the sanctions described in subsection (b) of this section upon determining that the foreign financial institution has knowingly conducted or facilitated any significant financial transaction:

 

(i) on or after August 7, 2018, for the sale, supply, or transfer to Iran of significant goods or services used in connection with the automotive sector of Iran;

 

(ii) on or after November 5, 2018, on behalf of any Iranian person included on the SDN List (other than an Iranian depository institution whose property and interests in property are blocked solely pursuant to Executive Order 13599) or any other person included on the SDN List whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to subsection 1(a) of this order or Executive Order 13599 (other than an Iranian depository institution whose property and interests in property are blocked solely pursuant to Executive Order 13599);

 

(iii) on or after November 5, 2018, with NIOC or NICO, except for a sale or provision to NIOC or NICO of the products described in section 5(a)(3)(A)(i) of ISA provided that the fair market value of such products is lower than the applicable dollar threshold specified in that provision;

 

(iv) on or after November 5, 2018, for the purchase, acquisition, sale, transport, or marketing of petroleum or petroleum products from Iran; or

 

(v) on or after November 5, 2018, for the purchase, acquisition, sale, transport, or marketing of petrochemical products from Iran.

 

(b) With respect to any foreign financial institution determined by the Secretary of the Treasury in accordance with this section to meet any of the criteria set forth in subsections (a)(i)-(a)(v) of this section, the Secretary of the Treasury may prohibit the opening, and prohibit or impose strict conditions on the maintaining, in the United States of a correspondent account or a payable-through account by such foreign financial institution.

 

(c) Subsections (a)(ii)-(a)(iv) of this section shall apply with respect to a significant financial transaction conducted or facilitated by a foreign financial institution for the purchase of petroleum or petroleum products from Iran only if:

 

(i) the President determines under subparagraphs (4)(B) and (C) of subsection 1245(d) of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (Public Law 112-81) (2012 NDAA) (22 U.S.C. 8513a) that there is a sufficient supply of petroleum and petroleum products from countries other than Iran to permit a significant reduction in the volume of petroleum and petroleum products purchased from Iran by or through foreign financial institutions; and

 

(ii) an exception under subparagraph 4(D) of subsection 1245(d) of the 2012 NDAA from the imposition of sanctions under paragraph (1) of that subsection does not apply.

 

(d) Subsection (a)(ii) of this section shall not apply with respect to a significant financial transaction conducted or facilitated by a foreign financial institution for the sale, supply, or transfer to or from Iran of natural gas only if the financial transaction is solely for trade between the country with primary jurisdiction over the foreign financial institution and Iran, and any funds owed to Iran as a result of such trade are credited to an account located in the country with primary jurisdiction over the foreign financial institution.

 

(e) Subsections (a)(ii)-(a)(v) of this section shall not apply with respect to any person for conducting or facilitating a transaction for the provision (including any sale) of agricultural commodities, food, medicine, or medical devices to Iran.

 

(f) The prohibitions in subsection (b) of this section apply except to the extent provided by statutes, or in regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order, and notwithstanding any contract entered into or any license or permit granted prior to the effective date of this order or, where specifically provided, the effective date of the prohibition.

 

Sec. 3. “Menu-based” Sanctions Relating to Iran’s Automotive Sector and Trade in Iranian Petroleum, Petroleum Products, and Petrochemical Products. (a) The Secretary of State, in consultation with the Secretary of the Treasury, the Secretary of Commerce, the Secretary of Homeland Security, and the United States Trade Representative, and with the President of the Export-Import Bank, the Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, and other agencies and officials as appropriate, is hereby authorized to impose on a person any of the sanctions described in section 4 or 5 of this order upon determining that the person:

 

(i) on or after August 7, 2018, knowingly engaged in a significant transaction for the sale, supply, or transfer to Iran of significant goods or services used in connection with the automotive sector of Iran;

 

(ii) on or after November 5, 2018, knowingly engaged in a significant transaction for the purchase, acquisition, sale, transport, or marketing of petroleum or petroleum products from Iran;

 

(iii) on or after November 5, 2018, knowingly engaged in a significant transaction for the purchase, acquisition, sale, transport, or marketing of petrochemical products from Iran;

 

(iv) is a successor entity to a person determined by the Secretary of State in accordance with this section to meet any of the criteria set forth in subsections (a)(i)-(a)(iii) of this section;

 

(v) owns or controls a person determined by the Secretary of State in accordance with this section to meet any of the criteria set forth in subsections (a)(i)-(a)(iii) of this section, and had knowledge that the person engaged in the activities referred to in those subsections; or

 

(vi) is owned or controlled by, or under common ownership or control with, a person determined by the Secretary of State in accordance with this section to meet any of the criteria set forth in subsections (a)(i)-(a)(iii) of this section, and knowingly participated in the activities referred to in those subsections.

 

(b) Subsection (a)(ii) of this section shall apply with respect to a person only if:

 

(i) the President determines under subparagraphs (4)(B) and (C) of subsection 1245(d) of the 2012 NDAA that there is a sufficient supply of petroleum and petroleum products from countries other than Iran to permit a significant reduction in the volume of petroleum and petroleum products purchased from Iran by or through foreign financial institutions; and

 

(ii) an exception under subparagraph 4(D) of subsection 1245(d) of the 2012 NDAA from the imposition of sanctions under paragraph (1) of that subsection does not apply.

 

Sec. 4. Agency Implementation Authorities for “Menu-based” Sanctions. When the Secretary of State, in accordance with the terms of section 3 of this order, has determined that a person meets any of the criteria described in subsections (a)(i)-(a)(vi) of that section and has selected any of the sanctions set forth below to impose on that person, the heads of relevant agencies, in consultation with the Secretary of State, as appropriate, shall take the following actions where necessary to implement the sanctions imposed by the Secretary of State:

 

(a) the Board of Directors of the Export-Import Bank of the United States shall deny approval of the issuance of any guarantee, insurance, extension of credit, or participation in an extension of credit in connection with the export of any goods or services to the sanctioned person;

 

(b) agencies shall not issue any specific license or grant any other specific permission or authority under any statute or regulation that requires the prior review and approval of the United States Government as a condition for the export or reexport of goods or technology to the sanctioned person;

 

(c) with respect to a sanctioned person that is a financial institution:

 

(i) the Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the President of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York shall take such actions as they deem appropriate, including denying designation, or terminating the continuation of any prior designation of, the sanctioned person as a primary dealer in United States Government debt instruments; or

 

(ii) agencies shall prevent the sanctioned person from serving as an agent of the United States Government or serving as a repository for United States Government funds;

 

(d) agencies shall not procure, or enter into a contract for the procurement of, any goods or services from the sanctioned person;

 

(e) the Secretary of State shall deny a visa to, and the Secretary of Homeland Security shall exclude from the United States, any alien that the Secretary of State determines is a corporate officer or principal of, or a shareholder with a controlling interest in, a sanctioned person; or

 

(f) the heads of the relevant agencies, as appropriate, shall impose on the principal executive officer or officers, or persons performing similar functions and with similar authorities, of a sanctioned person the sanctions described in subsections (a)-(e) of this section, as selected by the Secretary of State.

 

(g) The prohibitions in subsections (a)-(f) of this section apply except to the extent provided by statutes, or in regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order, and notwithstanding any contract entered into or any license or permit granted prior to the effective date of this order or, where specifically provided, the effective date of the prohibition.

 

Sec. 5. Additional Implementation Authorities for “Menu-based” Sanctions. (a) When the President, or the Secretary of State or the Secretary of the Treasury pursuant to authority delegated by the President and in accordance with the terms of such delegation, has determined that sanctions described in section 6(a) of ISA shall be imposed on a person pursuant to ISA, CISADA, TRA, or IFCA and has selected one or more of the sanctions set forth below to impose on that person or when the Secretary of State, in accordance with the terms of section 3 of this order, has determined that a person meets any of the criteria described in subsections (a)(i)-(a)(vi) of that section and has selected one or more of the sanctions set forth below to impose on that person, the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State, shall take the following actions where necessary to implement the sanctions selected and maintained by the President, the Secretary of State, or the Secretary of the Treasury:

 

(i) prohibit any United States financial institution from making loans or providing credits to the sanctioned person totaling more than $10,000,000 in any 12-month period, unless such person is engaged in activities to relieve human suffering and the loans or credits are provided for such activities;

 

(ii) prohibit any transactions in foreign exchange that are subject to the jurisdiction of the United States and in which the sanctioned person has any interest;

 

(iii) prohibit any transfers of credit or payments between financial institutions or by, through, or to any financial institution, to the extent that such transfers or payments are subject to the jurisdiction of the United States and involve any interest of the sanctioned person;

 

(iv) block all property and interests in property that are in the United States, that hereafter come within the United States, or that are or hereafter come within the possession or control of any United States person of the sanctioned person, and provide that such property and interests in property may not be transferred, paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt in;

 

(v) prohibit any United States person from investing in or purchasing significant amounts of equity or debt instruments of a sanctioned person;

 

(vi) restrict or prohibit imports of goods, technology, or services, directly or indirectly, into the United States from the sanctioned person; or

 

(vii) impose on the principal executive officer or officers, or persons performing similar functions and with similar authorities, of a sanctioned person the sanctions described in subsections (a)(i)-(a)(vi) of this section, as selected by the President or Secretary of State or the Secretary of the Treasury, as appropriate.

 

(b) The prohibitions in subsection (a) of this section apply except to the extent provided by statutes, or in regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order, and notwithstanding any contract entered into or any license or permit granted prior to the effective date of this order or, where specifically provided, the effective date of the prohibition.

 

Sec. 6. Sanctions Relating to the Iranian Rial. (a) The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State, is hereby authorized to impose on a foreign financial institution the sanctions described in subsection (b) of this section upon determining that the foreign financial institution has, on or after August 7, 2018:

 

(i) knowingly conducted or facilitated any significant transaction related to the purchase or sale of Iranian rials or a derivative, swap, future, forward, or other similar contract whose value is based on the exchange rate of the Iranian rial; or

 

(ii) maintained significant funds or accounts outside the territory of Iran denominated in the Iranian rial.

 

(b) With respect to any foreign financial institution determined by the Secretary of the Treasury in accordance with this section to meet the criteria set forth in subsection (a)(i) or (a)(ii) of this section, the Secretary of the Treasury may:

 

(i) prohibit the opening, and prohibit or impose strict conditions on the maintaining, in the United States of a correspondent account or a payable‑through account by such foreign financial institution; or

 

(ii) block all property and interests in property that are in the United States, that hereafter come within the United States, or that are or hereafter come within the possession or control of any United States person of such foreign financial institution, and provide that such property and interests in property may not be transferred, paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt in.

 

(c) The prohibitions in subsection (b) of this section apply except to the extent provided by statutes, or in regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order, and notwithstanding any contract entered into or any license or permit granted prior to the effective date of this order or, where specifically provided, the effective date of the prohibition.

 

Sec. 7. Sanctions with Respect to the Diversion of Goods Intended for the People of Iran, the Transfer of Goods or Technologies to Iran that are Likely to be Used to Commit Human Rights Abuses, and Censorship. (a) The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with or at the recommendation of the Secretary of State, is hereby authorized to impose on a person the measures described in subsection (b) of this section upon determining that the person:

 

(i) has engaged, on or after January 2, 2013, in corruption or other activities relating to the diversion of goods, including agricultural commodities, food, medicine, and medical devices, intended for the people of Iran;

 

(ii) has engaged, on or after January 2, 2013, in corruption or other activities relating to the misappropriation of proceeds from the sale or resale of goods described in subsection (a)(i) of this section;

 

(iii) has knowingly, on or after August 10, 2012, transferred, or facilitated the transfer of, goods or technologies to Iran, any entity organized under the laws of Iran or otherwise subject to the jurisdiction of the Government of Iran, or any national of Iran, for use in or with respect to Iran, that are likely to be used by the Government of Iran or any of its agencies or instrumentalities, or by any other person on behalf of the Government of Iran or any of such agencies or instrumentalities, to commit serious human rights abuses against the people of Iran;

 

(iv) has knowingly, on or after August 10, 2012, provided services, including services relating to hardware, software, or specialized information or professional consulting, engineering, or support services, with respect to goods or technologies that have been transferred to Iran and that are likely to be used by the Government of Iran or any of its agencies or instrumentalities, or by any other person on behalf of the Government of Iran or any of such agencies or instrumentalities, to commit serious human rights abuses against the people of Iran;

 

(v) has engaged in censorship or other activities with respect to Iran on or after June 12, 2009, that prohibit, limit, or penalize the exercise of freedom of expression or assembly by citizens of Iran, or that limit access to print or broadcast media, including the facilitation or support of intentional frequency manipulation by the Government of Iran or an entity owned or controlled by the Government of Iran that would jam or restrict an international signal;

 

(vi) has materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services to or in support of, the activities described in subsections (a)(i)-(a)(v) of this section or any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this section; or

 

(vii) is owned or controlled by, or has acted or purported to act for or on behalf of, directly or indirectly, any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this section.

 

(b) With respect to any person determined by the Secretary of the Treasury in accordance with this section to meet any of the criteria set forth in subsections (a)(i)-(a)(vii) of this section, all property and interests in property that are in the United States, that hereafter come within the United States, or that are or hereafter come within the possession or control of any United States person of such person are blocked and may not be transferred, paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt in.

 

(c) The prohibitions in subsection (b) of this section apply except to the extent provided by statutes, or in regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order, and notwithstanding any contract entered into or any license or permit granted prior to the effective date of this order or, where specifically provided, the effective date of the prohibition.

 

Sec. 8. Entities Owned or Controlled by a United States Person and Established or Maintained Outside the United States. (a) No entity owned or controlled by a United States person and established or maintained outside the United States may knowingly engage in any transaction, directly or indirectly, with the Government of Iran or any person subject to the jurisdiction of the Government of Iran, if that transaction would be prohibited by Executive Order 12957, Executive Order 12959 of May 6, 1995, Executive Order 13059 of August 19, 1997, Executive Order 13599, or sections 1 or 15 of this order, or any regulation issued pursuant to the foregoing, if the transaction were engaged in by a United States person or in the United States.

 

(b) Penalties assessed for violations of the prohibition in subsection (a) of this section, and any related violations of section 15 of this order may be assessed against the United States person that owns or controls the entity that engaged in the prohibited transaction.

 

(c) The prohibitions in subsection (a) of this section apply, except to the extent provided by statutes, or in regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order, and notwithstanding any contract entered into or any license or permit granted prior to the effective date of this order or, where specifically provided, the effective date of the prohibition, except to the extent provided in subsection 20(c) of this order.

 

Sec. 9. Revoking and Superseding Prior Executive Orders. The following Executive Orders are revoked and superseded:

 

(a) Executive Order 13628 of October 9, 2012 (Authorizing the Implementation of Certain Sanctions Set Forth in the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012 and Additional Sanctions With Respect to Iran); and

 

(b) Executive Order 13716 of January 16, 2016 (Revocation of Executive Orders 13574, 13590, 13622, and 13645 With Respect to Iran, Amendment of Executive Order 13628 With Respect to Iran, and Provision of Implementation Authorities for Aspects of Certain Statutory Sanctions Outside the Scope of U.S. Commitments Under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action of July 14, 2015).

 

Sec. 10. Natural Gas Project Exception. Subsections 1(a), 2(a)(ii)-(a)(v), 3(a)(ii)-(a)(iii), and, with respect to a person determined by the Secretary of State in accordance with section 3 to meet the criteria of 3(a)(ii)-(iii), 3(a)(iv)-(vi) of this order shall not apply with respect to any person for conducting or facilitating a transaction involving a project described in subsection (a) of section 603 of TRA to which the exception under that section applies.

 

Sec. 11. Donations. I hereby determine that, to the extent section 203(b)(2) of IEEPA (50 U.S.C. 1702(b)(2)) may apply, the making of donations of the types of articles specified in such section by, to, or for the benefit of any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order would seriously impair my ability to deal with the national emergency declared in Executive Order 12957, and I hereby prohibit such donations as provided by subsections 1(b), 5(a)(iv), 6(b)(ii), and 7(b) of this order.

 

Sec. 12. Prohibitions. The prohibitions in subsections 1(b), 5(a)(iv), 6(b)(ii), and 7(b) of this order include:

 

(a) the making of any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services by, to, or for the benefit of any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order; and

 

(b) the receipt of any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services from any such person.

 

Sec. 13. Entry into the United States. The unrestricted immigrant and nonimmigrant entry into the United States of aliens determined to meet one or more of the criteria in subsections 1(a), 3(a), and 7(a) of this order would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, and the entry of such persons into the United States, as immigrants or nonimmigrants, is hereby suspended. Such persons shall be treated as persons covered by section 1 of Proclamation 8693 of July 24, 2011 (Suspension of Entry of Aliens Subject to United Nations Security Council Travel Bans and International Emergency Economic Powers Act Sanctions).

 

Sec. 14. General Authorities. The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State, is hereby authorized to take such actions, including adopting rules and regulations, to employ all powers granted to me by IEEPA and sections 6(a)(6), 6(a)(7), 6(a)(8), 6(a)(9), 6(a)(11), and 6(a)(12) of ISA, and to employ all powers granted to the United States Government by section 6(a)(3) of ISA, as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of this order, other than the purposes described in sections 3, 4, and 13 of this order. The Secretary of the Treasury may, consistent with applicable law, redelegate any of these functions within the Department of the Treasury. All agencies of the United States shall take all appropriate measures within their authority to implement this order.

 

Sec. 15. Evasion and Conspiracy. (a) Any transaction that evades or avoids, has the purpose of evading or avoiding, causes a violation of, or attempts to violate any of the prohibitions set forth in this order or in Executive Order 12957, Executive Order 12959, Executive Order 13059, or Executive Order 13599 is prohibited.

 

(b) Any conspiracy formed to violate any of the prohibitions set forth in this order or in Executive Order 12957, Executive Order 12959, Executive Order 13059, or Executive Order 13599 is prohibited.

 

Sec. 16. Definitions. For the purposes of this order:

 

(a) the term “automotive sector of Iran” means the manufacturing or assembling in Iran of light and heavy vehicles including passenger cars, trucks, buses, minibuses, pick-up trucks, and motorcycles, as well as original equipment manufacturing and after-market parts manufacturing relating to such vehicles;

 

(b) the term “entity” means a partnership, association, trust, joint venture, corporation, group, subgroup, or other organization;

 

(c) the term “financial institution” includes (i) a depository institution (as defined in section 3(c)(1) of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act) (12 U.S.C. 1813(c)(1)), including a branch or agency of a foreign bank (as defined in section 1(b)(7) of the International Banking Act of 1978) (12 U.S.C. 3101(7)); (ii) a credit union; (iii) a securities firm, including a broker or dealer; (iv) an insurance company, including an agency or underwriter; and (v) any other company that provides financial services;

 

(d) the term “foreign financial institution” means any foreign entity that is engaged in the business of accepting deposits, making, granting, transferring, holding, or brokering loans or credits, or purchasing or selling foreign exchange, securities, commodity futures or options, or procuring purchasers and sellers thereof, as principal or agent. It includes, but is not limited to, depository institutions, banks, savings banks, money service businesses, trust companies, securities brokers and dealers, commodity futures and options brokers and dealers, forward contract and foreign exchange merchants, securities and commodities exchanges, clearing corporations, investment companies, employee benefit plans, dealers in precious metals, stones, or jewels, and holding companies, affiliates, or subsidiaries of any of the foregoing. The term does not include the international financial institutions identified in 22 U.S.C. 262r(c)(2), the International Fund for Agricultural Development, the North American Development Bank, or any other international financial institution so notified by the Secretary of the Treasury;

 

(e) the term “Government of Iran” includes the Government of Iran, any political subdivision, agency, or instrumentality thereof, including the Central Bank of Iran, and any person owned or controlled by, or acting for or on behalf of, the Government of Iran;

 

(f) the term “Iran” means the Government of Iran and the territory of Iran and any other territory or marine area, including the exclusive economic zone and continental shelf, over which the Government of Iran claims sovereignty, sovereign rights, or jurisdiction, provided that the Government of Iran exercises partial or total de facto control over the area or derives a benefit from economic activity in the area pursuant to international arrangements;

 

(g) the term “Iranian depository institution” means any entity (including foreign branches), wherever located, organized under the laws of Iran or any jurisdiction within Iran, or owned or controlled by the Government of Iran, or in Iran, or owned or controlled by any of the foregoing, that is engaged primarily in the business of banking (for example, banks, savings banks, savings associations, credit unions, trust companies, and bank holding companies);

 

(h) the term “Iranian person” means an individual who is a citizen or national of Iran or an entity organized under the laws of Iran or otherwise subject to the jurisdiction of the Government of Iran;

 

(i) the terms “knowledge” and “knowingly,” with respect to conduct, a circumstance, or a result, mean that a person has actual knowledge, or should have known, of the conduct, the circumstance, or the result;

 

(j) the terms “Naftiran Intertrade Company” and “NICO” mean the Naftiran Intertrade Company Ltd. and any entity owned or controlled by, or operating for or on behalf of, the Naftiran Intertrade Company Ltd.;

 

(k) the terms “National Iranian Oil Company” and “NIOC” mean the National Iranian Oil Company and any entity owned or controlled by, or operating for or on behalf of, the National Iranian Oil Company;

 

(l) the term “person” means an individual or entity;

 

(m) the term “petrochemical products” includes any aromatic, olefin, and synthesis gas, and any of their derivatives, including ethylene, propylene, butadiene, benzene, toluene, xylene, ammonia, methanol, and urea;

 

(n) the term “petroleum” (also known as crude oil) means a mixture of hydrocarbons that exists in liquid phase in natural underground reservoirs and remains liquid at atmospheric pressure after passing through surface separating facilities;

 

(o) the term “petroleum products” includes unfinished oils, liquefied petroleum gases, pentanes plus, aviation gasoline, motor gasoline, naphtha-type jet fuel, kerosene-type jet fuel, kerosene, distillate fuel oil, residual fuel oil, petrochemical feedstocks, special naphthas, lubricants, waxes, petroleum coke, asphalt, road oil, still gas, and miscellaneous products obtained from the processing of: crude oil (including lease condensate), natural gas, and other hydrocarbon compounds. The term does not include natural gas, liquefied natural gas, biofuels, methanol, and other non-petroleum fuels;

 

(p) the term “sanctioned person” means a person that the President, or the Secretary of State or the Secretary of the Treasury pursuant to authority delegated by the President and in accordance with the terms of such delegation, has determined is a person on whom sanctions described in section 6(a) of ISA shall be imposed pursuant to ISA, CISADA, TRA, or IFCA, and on whom the President, the Secretary of State, or the Secretary of the Treasury has imposed any of the sanctions in section 6(a) of ISA or a person on whom the Secretary of State, in accordance with the terms of section 3 of this order, has decided to impose sanctions pursuant to section 3 of this order;

 

(q) the term “subject to the jurisdiction of the Government of Iran” means a person organized under the laws of Iran or any jurisdiction within Iran, ordinarily resident in Iran, or in Iran, or owned or controlled by any of the foregoing;

 

(r) the term “United States financial institution” means a financial institution as defined in subsection (c) of this section (including its foreign branches) organized under the laws of the United States or any jurisdiction within the United States or located in the United States; and

 

(s) the term “United States person” means any United States citizen, permanent resident alien, entity organized under the laws of the United States or any jurisdiction within the United States (including foreign branches), or any person in the United States.

 

Sec. 17. Notice. For those persons whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order who might have a constitutional presence in the United States, I find that because of the ability to transfer funds or other assets instantaneously, prior notice to such persons of measures to be taken pursuant to this order would render those measures ineffectual. I therefore determine that for these measures to be effective in addressing the national emergency declared in Executive Order 12957, there need be no prior notice of a listing or determination made pursuant to subsections 1(b), 5(a)(iv), 6(b)(ii), and 7(b) of this order.

 

Sec. 18. Delegation to Implement Section 104A of CISADA. The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State, is hereby authorized to take such actions, including adopting rules and regulations, and to employ all powers granted to me by IEEPA, as may be necessary to carry out section 104A of CISADA (22 U.S.C. 8513b). The Secretary of the Treasury may, consistent with applicable law, redelegate any of these functions within the Department of the Treasury.

 

Sec. 19. Rights. This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

 

Sec. 20. Effect on Actions or Proceedings, Blocked Property, and Regulations, Orders, Directives, and Licenses. (a) Pursuant to section 202 of the NEA (50 U.S.C. 1622), the revocation of Executive Orders 13716 and 13628 as set forth in section 9 of this order, shall not affect any action taken or proceeding pending not finally concluded or determined as of the effective date of this order, or any action or proceeding based on any act committed prior to the effective date of this order, or any rights or duties that matured or penalties that were incurred prior to the effective date of this order.

 

(b) Except to the extent provided in statutes or regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order, and notwithstanding any contract entered into or any license or permit granted prior to the effective date of this order, the following are blocked and may not be transferred, paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt in: all property and interests in property that were blocked pursuant to Executive Order 13628 and remained blocked immediately prior to the effective date of this order.

 

(c) Except to the extent provided in regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order, all regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that were issued pursuant to Executive Order 13628 and remained in effect immediately prior to the effective date of this order are hereby authorized to remain in effect — subject to their existing terms and conditions — pursuant to this order, which continues in effect certain sanctions set forth in Executive Order 13628.

 

Sec. 21. Relationship to Algiers Accords. The measures taken pursuant to this order are in response to actions of the Government of Iran occurring after the conclusion of the 1981 Algiers Accords, and are intended solely as a response to those later actions.

 

Sec. 22. Effective Date. This order is effective 12:01 a.m. eastern daylight time on August 7, 2018.”

 

DONALD J. TRUMP

 

THE WHITE HOUSE,

August 6, 2018.


TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com

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The White House
Wednesday, August 1, 2018

 

Vice President Mike Pence Participates in the Honorable Carry Ceremony of American Service Members Who Fell in the Korean War

 

Vice President Mike Pence Participates in the Honorable Carry Ceremony

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

 

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, HAWAII – Vice President Mike Pence of the united States of America participates in the Honorable Carry Ceremony for the Remains of American Service Members Who Fell in the Korean War on Wednesday, August 1, 2018.

Honorable Carry Ceremony for the Remains of American Service Members Who Fell in the Korean War

 

Honorable Carry Ceremony for the Remains of American Service Members Who Fell in the Korean War | White House Snapshot Photo by Karen Ann Carr/TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com/ E Media Inc.

 

 

Honorable Carry Ceremony for the Remains of American Service Members Who Fell in the Korean War

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

VIDEO OF ENTIRE EVENT

 

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, HAWAII – Vice President Mike Pence presents remarks at the Honorable Carry Ceremony for the Remains of American Service Members Who Fell in the Korean War on Wednesday, August 1, 2018.

 

 

HAWAII – Vice President Pence of the United States of America delivers remarks at an Honorable Carry Ceremony for the Remains of American Service Members Who Fell in the Korean War on Wednesday, August 1, 2018 in Hawaii.

~

Remarks of Vice President Mike Pence

 

THE VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA MIKE PENCE: “Governor Ige, Admiral Davidson, General Brown, Lieutenant General Brown, Rear Admiral Crites, distinguished members of Congress, honored guests, members of our Armed Forces, and most of all, veterans from our Korean War, and the cherished families of our missing fallen:

Thank you for joining us for this historic occasion. And allow me to extend greetings and great respect to all those gathered here from our Commander-in-Chief, whose leadership and compassion brought this day about — the 45th President of the United States of America, President Donald Trump.

The Good Book says, “If you owe debts, pay debts; if honor, then honor; if respect, then respect.” And we are gathered here at this Honorable Carry Ceremony to receive 55 flag-draped cases, which we trust include the remains of American heroes who fell in the Korean War.

Some have called the Korean War the “forgotten war.” But today, we prove these heroes were never forgotten. Today, our boys are coming home.

President Trump asked me to be here on this day, on his behalf, and honestly, I’ve never been more humbled to be asked to represent him.

You see, as the Admiral just said, my dad, Lieutenant Ed Pence, fought in combat in the Korean War. He came back with a medal on his chest. But my dad — gone now 30 years — always told us that the real heroes of the Korean War were the ones that didn’t get to come home. And I just know there’s no place Dad would rather have me be than here with all of you, welcoming these heroes home.

Sixty-five years ago last week, the armistice was signed to bring the Korean War to its close. From the moment the guns fell silent, American soldiers returned home, some to their families and futures, and some to their eternal rest. But more than 8,000 Americans did not come home at all.

Our nation has worked tirelessly to keep our sacred promise to leave no man behind. And while several hundred of the missing fallen have been returned, for more than a decade, as a result of North Korea’s nuclear threats and escalations, search- and-rescue and recovery efforts have been suspended — until today.

On June 12th, President Trump traveled to a historic summit in Singapore with Kim Jong Un of North Korea. As our President entered into negotiations with North Korea, he also had our fallen on his heart. As he secured a commitment for the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, our President also secured a promise from Chairman Kim to return the remains of all fallen U.S. service members lost in North Korea.

I know that President Trump is grateful that Chairman Kim has kept his word, and we see today as tangible progress in our efforts to achieve peace on the Korean Peninsula.

But today is just a beginning. Our work will not be complete until all our fallen heroes are accounted for and home. We will see to it, in the days ahead, that these heroes will be the heroes who led the way to many more homecomings in the future.

Etched upon the wall of the Korean War Memorial is a tribute to the brave Americans who fought there. It reads, “Our nation honors her sons and daughters who answered the call to defend a country they never knew and a people they never met.”

At the time they answered that call, America was weary from war. Less than five years before, we had emerged victorious from the flames of World War II. But the end of that struggle marked the beginning of a new one, a war between the forces of freedom and the forces of communism. And 68 years ago, on the Korean Peninsula, the battle was joined.

On June 25, 1950, at dawn, communist North Korea invaded the free Republic of South Korea. Its armies stormed across the 38th Parallel. In just a few short days, they nearly succeeded in driving freedom from that peninsula.

America knew that this march would not have stopped in South Korea. Emboldened by a victory there, communism could have spread to every corner of the Asia-Pacific, toppling nations one by one. And so America resolved to stop communism’s advance in Korea. And we sent our best to do it.

Over three long years, nearly 2 million American patriots took up the fight. More than 100,000 were injured and 36,574 gave their all to defend our freedom and secure freedom for South Korea. And their acts of courage were no less heroic than that of their brothers-in-arms who stormed the beaches at Normandy or Iwo Jima.

They beat back relentless enemy attacks at the Pusan Perimeter for six straight weeks, and saved South Korea from being driven into the sea.

They came ashore at Inchon, and then pushed inland, retaking Seoul, the capital of free Korea, relieving their compatriots to the south and opening a crucial new front.

They made their stand at the Chosin Reservoir, surrounded and outnumbered 4 to 1 for 17 harrowing days and nights, as the temperatures plunged to 35 degrees below zero. They kept fighting until they broke through the enemy lines, and became legends.

From Heartbreak Ridge to Pork Chop Hill to Old Baldy, in foxholes, over mountains, and through rice paddies, they soldiered on. They drove back the enemy line, and the Armed Forces of the United States, together with our allies, defended our freedom, and won a lasting freedom for the people of South Korea that prospers to this day.

In just a few moments, the remains of some of those same American heroes were finally returned to American soil, draped in the colors of the country they served.

Today, they are known but to God. But soon we will know their names, and we will tell their stories of courage. They were soldiers, yes, but they were also husbands and fathers, brothers and neighbors, long gone but never lost to the memory of their loved ones. For generations, their families had only a black-and-white photograph to cling to, a faded letter, or the precious memory of an embrace on the day they left.

We don’t know who will come off these planes today. But we do know they are heroes all. Heroes with stories like Army Sergeant Dom Eritano, a World War II combat veteran from Ohio who went missing after a fierce battle on Hill 717. For his courage under fire, he was posthumously awarded the Silver Star and the Purple Heart.

Or they could be heroes remembered just like Major Charles Loring, who’d been held a prisoner by the Nazis after being captured in 1944. Less than a decade later, he returned to battle. On a sortie above enemy territory, near a place called Sniper Ridge, his F-80 was hit by anti-aircraft fire. And instead of diverting back to friendly territory, Major Loring directed his plane into the very enemy artillery that was threatening American soldiers.

They could also have stories like First Lieutenant Hal Downes. Hal trained for combat as the Second World War came to a close. He got married, had a son, took a job at a car company. But on his first day, as he said, before he even had a chance to sharpen a pencil, his wife called him to said he’d been recalled to the United States Air Force.

He went without hesitation. And on a night bombing run over North Korea, Lieutenant Downes was lost. He left behind his wife Elinor, their unborn daughter Donna, and a 3-year-old boy named Rick, who every day of his life since has worked without ceasing to honor his father’s memory and support the families of our missing fallen from the Korean War. And, Rick, we are honored by your presence with us today.

Or, finally, they could have stories like First Lieutenant Frank Salazar, called up from the Nevada Air National Guard, who volunteered to leave his duty station to serve in Korea. He was shot down on New Year’s Eve 1952, while flying a recon mission over enemy territory.

Lieutenant Salazar’s daughter Diana was just 4 years old when he shipped out from Travis Air Force Base. We met Diana last night at that very same Air Force base — the base where she saw her father depart for the last time. It was the first time that she had been back there. Diana, you honor your father, and all of us, by your presence today as well.

Whosoever emerges from these aircraft today begins a new season of hope for the families of our missing fallen. Hope that those who are lost will yet be found. Hope that after so many years of questions, these families will have closure. And hope that, as President Trump said just yesterday, that these, and those that follow, will, in his words, finally come home to lay to “rest in American soil.”

And so they shall. Some in Arlington National Cemetery. Some in national cemeteries across the land. Some in a churchyard alongside loved ones long gone. And some in a humble family plot by a cornfield on a lonely road.

But wherever they go, these, and all those that will follow, shall be remembered with honor. For as the Bible says, “No greater love has a man than this, that he should lay down his life for his friends.” And as these heroes are laid to rest, so we pray they will rest in peace.

To the families of our fallen, here and looking on, know that our hearts are with you today. We share your hope that someday soon your loved one’s precious remains will be restored to your tender care. And we pledge to you: We will never stop striving until every hero lost in the Korean War is home.

To the veterans of our Korean War, brothers- and sisters-in-arms, thank you for your service. We hope that in this ceremony, in this promise kept, you see once more the deep gratitude that every American feels for your service, and that you’d leave with the absolute assurance that the Korean War is forgotten no more.

And to our honored dead, who gave the last full measure of devotion for their families and our freedom — to these great American heroes, fallen so long ago: Today, as a nation, we breathe a word of thanks for your service and sacrifice. And we say to you, as one people, with one voice: Welcome home.

May God bless the memory of our fallen and their families. May God bless all who have served and serve to this day in the uniform of this great nation. And may God continue to bless the United States of America.”(Applause.)


TheWhiteHouseSpin.Com

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____________________
The White House
Wednesday, August 1, 2018

 

Vice President Mike Pence Presents Remarks at the Honorable Carry Ceremony of American Service Members Who Fell in the Korean War

 

Vice President Mike Pence Presents Remarks at an Honorable Carry Ceremony

Reported by Karen Ann Carr

 

 

 

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, HAWAII – Vice President Mike Pence of the united States of America presents remarks at the Honorable Carry Ceremony for the Remains of American Service Members Who Fell in the Korean War on Wednesday, August 1, 2018.



THANK YOU. HAVE A WONDERFUL DAY.

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