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  President Trump Remarks on Surprise Medical Billing  CSPAN  May 9, 2019 11:17pm-12:02am EDT

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8:00 eastern on c-span's "human a." q and c-span's newest book provides insight into the lives of the 44 american president. explore the life events that shaped our leaders, challenges they faced, and the legacies they left behind. order your copy today. "the presidents is available as a hardcover or e-book. >> at the white house, president trump talked about efforts to cut down on unexpected medical bills. he responded to reporters questions about subpoenas presented to his son, donald trump, jr. in relation to the russia investigation.
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as well as questions about trade relation with china, u.s. policy, and his relationship with john bolton. this is about 45 minutes. president trump: hello everybody. secretary a's are announced a bold new initiative to require drugmakers to disclose the prices to consumers and in this going to be something very special. you may have heard about it. maybe not. it is the beginning of a plan of transparency. i think it will have quite an impact. thank you very much. that was a job well done. [applause]
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thank you all for being here as we address one of the biggest concerns americans have about health care. veryepublican party is much becoming the party of health care. you see what we are doing. we are determined to end surprise medical billing for american patients. that is happening right now. i want to thank secretary acosta, sec. a's are, and everybody else in the room. thanks to senators lamar billnder, maggie hassan, cassidy, john barrasso, and representatives kevin brady, devon nunez, and greg walden. [applause] president trump: my administration is already taken decisive action to make health care more affordable for american families.
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we have vastly expanded lower cost health insurance plans happening and it has been an incredible success. we began a bold initiative to reduce the price of prescription drugs. the year, drug prices saw first decline in 46 years that drug prices have gone down. longwill be going down a way further. including the fact that we may allow states to buy drugs in other countries if we can buy them for a lesser price. that will be very unique. we will allow them to go to other countries because the drug companies have treated us very unfairly. the rules and restrictions within our country have been absolutely atrocious. will allow them with certain permissions to go to other countries if they can buy them for 60% less. it is pretty pathetic, but that is the way it works. many yearsry -- for
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drug companies gave foreign countries better deals than they gave our own country. now we are making sure our seniors share in discounts given to other countries. we will always protect patients with pre-existing conditions. the republican party will always protect patients with pre-existing conditions. state, i asked congress to pass legislation to protect american patients. billings,ng surprised which has been a tremendous problem in this country has left some patients with thousands of dollars in unjustified charges for services they did not know anything about. nottimes services they did have any information on. they were told by the doctor, hospitals in the areas they were going to, they get what they call a surprise bill. not a pleasant surprise.
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this must end. we are going to hold insurance companies and hospitals totally accountable. familiesined today by who have personally experienced ofe horrible injustices surprise medical bills. i would like you to maybe come up and share your stories. it is a pretty amazing story. >> i have insurance. we are still stuck with a highly inflated medical bill. a lot of pain, stress, and fear. i shouldn't have to deal with this.
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we support the president. the president has called congress to support and pass to end surprise billing. also, to create more transparency in terms of medical bills. would you like: to explain what happened? >> i had a heart attack two years ago and was driven to the nearest hospital. insurance, i was still billed $110,000. the hospital threatened to send my bill to collections. there, all that stress and the fact that it was highly inflated, i was in shock when i found out some of the real prices of stuff i was charged for. i feel like i was exploited at my most vulnerable time, having suffered a heart attack.
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i hope congress hears this call to take action and close the loophole to end surprise billing. let's work towards transparency. president trump: you look very good now. >> thank you. [laughter] [applause] president trump: when you got that second bill, you handled it, right? the heart was ok? good. >> we paid it. president trump: you don't want to run for president. it is bad and it is a shame. also here with us today is dr. paul davis and his daughter liz from ohio. dr. davis and liz would like to tell you about their story.
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>> it is an honor for me to speak to you today. my family, like so many others was victimized by surprise medical bills. charged $17,850 for a urine drug screen. i have the bill, you may see it. she had successful back surgery in houston, texas and had a post operation visit because she had been given a prescription for a narcotic that she used appropriately. he said by the way, i would like a urine specimen. a year later, the bill showed up. test at best is worth $100. you could get it for $10 or $20. this type of billing is all too common, not just among dishonest providers. it affects most of those who could afford it least.
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we must put aside any other differences we have to work together to solve this problem. i'm very pleased to see this issue being brought to the nation's attention. i thank you. president trump: it is almost not believable. $17,850 for a urine test. if it was in network it would've been $100 that is still an inflated price. we settled for less but i won't go how much less. it is a bizarre story. i was told to keep it short. you sir. appreciate the opportunity. [applause] president trump: the amazing story.
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glad i got to see that bill. he's a believable looking guy, what do you think? check that out. that is pretty incredible. there are many stories like that. i have heard them four years. friends who get a bill that they can't understand. we are going to be announcing something i think over the next two weeks that will bring transparency to all of it. asa way it is going to be important as the health care bill. we are doing a great health care bill if we get the republican votes. this could be something that will have a tremendous impact. perhaps a bigger impact of a very good health care bill. if we took away the individual mandate from obamacare. that would be a big deal. it is tremendous, that is the new thing.
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it will be very comprehensive. also joined by martin, a top surgeon at johns hopkins university. that is a good place. he has studied this issue closely. please,. thank you. thank you for listening to the real health care experts, the patients and doctors. not just the special interests. thank you. when someone buys a car, they don't pay for the steering wheel separately from the spark plugs and conveyor belt. in health care, surprise bills and overpriced bills are now commonplace. they are crushing every day folks like these patients. people are getting hammered right now. when hospitals were built, they were built with a charter most of them that
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they would be a safe haven. a place of refuge for the sick race,jured, regardless of ethnicity, or one's ability to pay. today, surprise bills are hammering everyday americans. they have done nothing wrong. they work and have a job. they have insurance. they are getting hammered. in my own profession of surgical oncology, we see that half of women with stage four breast cancer report being harassed by medical bills. that is a disgrace to my specialty. that is a disgrace to the medical profession. that is a disgrace to our country. we can do better. hospitals and health care can get their together to provide one honest and fair transparent bill so we can restore medicine to its mission and finally stop the erosion of the public trust we are seeing. thank you. [applause]
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president trump: thank you very much. should lay awake at night thinking about the hidden fees. i am announcing principles that should guide carted -- congress. the senators and congressmen and women that are with us today are leading the charge. i push it they are all here. thank you for being here. this is fantastic. i thicket is going to be a successful charge. from what i understand, we have bipartisan support. that means it is very good. first, and emergency care situations, patient should never have to bear the burden of out-of-network costs they did not agree to pay. so-called balanced billing should be prohibited for emergency care.
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when patients receive nonemergency care, they should be given a clear and honest bill up front. that means they must be given prices for all services this will not just protect americans from surprise charges. it will empower them to choose the best option at the lowest possible price. patients should not receive surprise bills from out-of-network providers. very unfair. legislation should protect without expenditures. very important. more health care freedom. we want patients to be in charge and in total control. and an effort to
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address surprise billing, all kinds of health insurance, individual markets, we want everything included. no one in america should be bykrupted and unexpectedly health care costs that are out of control. no family should be blindsided by outrageous medical bills. i think next week, we will go even further. possibly the week after. it is being drawn now but it is one of the strongest things we have done as an administration. i don't think any administration has done more. if we get this the way we want it, we are going to c7 that is great. our initiative to and surprising bills is one of the initiatives we are taking to fix the health care system and deliver better care with more choices at lower costs. my administration is eager to work with both parties to save
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american patients thousands of dollars and give american families greater peace of mind. has ruined people's lives. they leave a hospital with something they think is going to be routine and they end up in court, and they end up going to court. and then they end up with lawyers' bills that are bigger than anything they could have imagined. they get it from every side. we're not going to have that anymore. so today, i ask democrats and republicans to come together, to work together. democrats and republicans can do this. and i really think it's going to be something that will be acted on quickly. john, what do you think, right? senator barrasso: i believe it. yes, sir, mr. president. president trump: lamar, right? senator alexander: mr. president, we'll be bringing you a bill, we believe, in july. president trump: great. going to be fantastic. well, you have great support in the white house and we appreciate it. and i want to thank everybody for being here. and hopefully you won't have any stories like that again, drew. that was not good.
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and your story was just terrible. i hope you negotiated it down very, very low. >> > not as well as i should ha. president trump: not that close to the hundred dollars? well, and thank you very much. i appreciate it very much. okay? yes. >> mr. president, on the north korea missiles, what message do you take from them? as whole well we're looking at -- president trump: we're looking at it very seriously right now. they were smaller missiles short-range missiles. nobody is happy about it, but we're taking a good look and we'll see. we'll see. the relationship continues, but we'll see what happens. i know they want to negotiate. they're talking about negotiating. but i don't think they're ready to negotiate because we have to either do it -- it's very much like china. the vice premier is coming here today. we were getting very close to a deal, and then they started to renegotiate the deal. we can't have that. we can't have that. so our country can take in $120 billion a year in tariffs, paid for mostly by china, by the way, not by us.
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a lot of people try and steer it in a different direction. ultimately it is paid for largely, by china. and businesses will pour back into our country. so instead of making the product, it'll be old fashion way, the way we used to do it. we made our own product. and i think things are going along pretty well there. but a large group delegation, headed by one of the most respected men and highest officials of china, will be coming in today. start at 5:00- and they'll see what they can do. but our alternative is an excellent one. it's an alternative i've spoken about for years. we'll take in well over $100 billion a year. we never took in 10 cents from china. not 10 cents. i think it will be a very strong day, frankly. but we'll see. we'll see. it was their idea to come back. >> mr. president, do you have
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plans to talk to president xi, or no? president trump: well, he just wrote me a beautiful letter. i just received it. and i'll probably speak to him by phone. but look, we have two great alternatives. our country is doing fantastically well. our number is at 3.2. don't forget, 3.2 - the first quarter is always, by far, the worst quarter, or at least, almost always. you look back over the years, first quarter is always weak. and we had 3.2 gdp. our unemployment numbers are the best in the history of our country and we're doing well. and our companies are really doing well. even in ohio -- the great state of ohio, general motors, at my very strong urging, to put it mildly, very strong urging. i wasn't even nice about it. but i appreciate what they did. they sold the beautiful plant lordstown. they sold that beautiful plant to a very, very good company that going to make electric trucks. and that work because that was the only thing they could say about our whole economy. lordstown. they kept saying, "lordstown. lordstown."
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and when you had all of these great companies spending billions and billions of dollars coming into our country they couldn't talk about it they'd only mention the one plant that was a gm plant from a very long time ago. and now we have a great company going in. going to make electric trucks. very appropriate. interesting idea, actually. electric trucks. yes, please. >> will you allow robert mueller to testify in congress? president trump: well, i'm going to leave that up to our very great attorney general, and he'll make a decision on that. but i will say this. look, the mueller report came out. it was done at -- i guess i'm hearing numbers now close to $40 million, with 17 or 18 very angry democrats who hated donald trump. and also, everything that they could possibly have at their disposal. there was nobody that was, in the history of our country, more transparent than me. i said, "give them every document. give them every person. let the white house counsel testify."
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i think he testified for 30 hours. i guess they must have asked him the same question because there wasn't much to testify about. but i said, "let him testify and let him -- keep him as long as you want." actually, when i heard 30 hours, i said, "that's a long time." i let him testify. i didn't have to. i have presidential privilege. i could've stopped everything. i didn't have to give them a document. i gave them 1.5 million documents. i gave them white house counsel. i gave them other lawyers. anybody you want, you can talk to. at the end of the testimony, no collusion and, essentially, no obstruction. of course, a lot of people say, "how can you obstruct when there was no crime? when there was no collusion, can you possibly obstruct? i'll tell you -- but it's worse than that. not only was there no crime, but the crime was committed on the other side. so we're protecting against the crime committed on the other side. so after spending all of that money, all of that time two years they come up with a report.
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and bob mueller is no friend of mine. i had conflicts with him. we had a business dispute. we had somebody that is in love with james comey. he liked james comey. they were very good friends, supposedly, best friends. maybe not, but supposedly, best friends. you look at the picture file and you see hundreds of pictures of him and comey. and with all of that and other things, he wanted the fbi job. i don't know if anybody knows that, but as you know, he was considered for the fbi job, wanted it. and the day after he didn't get it, he became the special counsel. that's a conflict. and we had other things. but those are tremendous conflicts. listen to this. your judge, call him a judge, has a business dispute with me. your judge has a fantastic relationship with james comey. well, he's a part of this. he lied to congress. he leaked -- he's a liar, a leaker.
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and your judge has a situation where he wanted to become the fbi director. we chose director wray instead, and told him, "i'm sorry." those are tremendous conflicts. those are tremendous conflicts. and then, he puts on his staff almost all democrats, many of whom contributed to hillary clinton. none of them contributed to me, that i can tell you. and it started out at 13 and went to 18. and these were angry democrats. these were people that went to her-- in one case, went to -- it was supposed to be a party, it turned out to be a funeral on election evening. and was going wild he was so angry. and this man now is judging me. you had other people made big contributions to hillary clinton's campaign. they were angry democrats in, i think, almost all cases. one of the people worked on the
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clinton foundation as just about the top person at the clinton foundation. with all of this, they came back, no collusion. there's nobody in this room, including you -- if they were -- that's you, john. if we looked at you, with $40 million, 18 angry people that hated you, and all of the other things i mentioned, they'll find something. i don't know. maybe, john, not. go ahead. finish it. >> mr. mueller is also friends with mr. barr, and as you're aware, mr. barr told lawmakers that he didn't have a problem with mr. mueller testifying. president trump: i'm going to leave that up to the attorney general as to whether or not. i think, to me, it looks like a redo. here's what has happened. the report comes back. it's perfect. it's beautiful. there's no collusion. nobody even talks about collusion. you know, i haven't heard the word "russia" in a long time. there's no more talk about russia. what happened to russia? the russian witchhunt -- they don't talk -- because it was so on collusion, which, by the way,
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is by far -- that's the big deal, because it was all about russia. so i haven't heard the word russia. they don't use the word "russi"" anymore. so, there's no crime. there never was a crime. it was a hoax. it was a witch hunt. so this comes back and it comes back totally exonerating donald trump and a lot of other people. this was a terrible thing that happened to our country. now, i'll you what they are asking. they are asking about how did this whole thing start. that's what people want to know. and i won't tell you, i had an event last night. a lot of you were there. thousands and thousands of people standing in a field. they've never seen anything like it. meaning, even the press. but it's always that way. we've never had an empty seat. thousands of people last night. you know what they want to know? how did this whole thing start? it's going to be hard for them to answer that one. yeah. please. >> mr. president, are you satisfied with the advice you received john bolton? president trump: yeah.
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john is very good. john is -- he has strong views on things, but that's okay. i actually temper john, which is pretty amazing isn't it? nobody thought that was going to -- i'm the one that tempers him, but that's okay. i have different sides. i mean, i have john bolton and i have other people that are a little more dovish than him. and, ultimately, i make the decision. i like john. i get very good advice from john. >> mr. president, as you saw, the senate intelligence committee has subpoenaed don, jr. that's the republican-led senate intelligence committee. what do you make of that? president trump: well, i was very surprised. i saw richard burr saying there was no collusion two or three weeks ago. he went outside and somebody asked him. "no, there's no collusion. we found no collusion." but i was very surprised to see my son. my son is a very good person, works very hard. the last thing he needs is washington, d.c. i think he'd rather not ever be involved. i remember he said to me, a long time ago when i was thinking about running, "dad, if i could help, let me know. it's not my expertise.
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it's not something i really like, but whatever i can do, you're my father. whatever i can do." he has now testified for twenty hours or something. a massive amount of time. the mueller report came out. that's the bible. the mueller report came out and they said he did nothing wrong. the only thing is it's oppo-research. if he did wrong, then everybody standing with me probably, except for john - and lamar. i think lamar is pretty - i'll tell you. did you ever do oppo-research on an opponent? i don't think so, lamar, right? and i know john barrasso never did opposition research because he's a fine, fine man. but i would say 99 percent of the rest of the folks are so, they didn't but what they didn't discuss is this woman that came in, who i watched her on the "today show" when it all started. innocent --t an
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well, nobody even knows, although the halls of congress know her very well because, for years, she's walked around all over congress. she came in, and she left, supposedly, gps fusion. goes and meets for a short period of time with my son and some other people. they talked about a subject as very well, you know, advertised and put out, which was nothing. it was a nothing meeting. in fact, jared left. he said, "get me out of this meeting. this is a waste of time." she then went back to gps fusion. they were the ones that wrote the phony dossier. why was she going to gps fusion? why did she go back? then i heard that don, for a year, made three phone calls with an unmarked number. they called it "unmarked." and this was a tremendous event -- the they all knew -- you were fair on
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that, john. but they all knew that these phone calls -- these tremendous phone calls, before the meeting after the meeting -- there were, i believe, three, right? they all knew that it had to be to his father. unmarked. it's perfect. so, he reported about the meeting and then reported what happened at the meeting. except, after looking and spending a tremendous amount of time and money, they're able to go back years and find out who made the calls. one was a local real estate developer the other was a great person from nascar. he took two of them. and a friend of don's. this went on for a year and a half. john, you heard all about the phone calls to, obviously, the father, where i knew -- i never knew about the meeting. but the phone calls to the father turned out not to be the phone calls. my son is a good person. my son testified for hours and hours. my son was totally exonerated by mueller, who, frankly, does not like donald trump.
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me, this donald trump. and, frankly, for my son after being exonerated to now get a subpoena to go again and speak again after close to 20 hours of telling everybody that would listen about a nothing meeting, yeah, i'm pretty surprised. please. >> should he fight that? should he fight that subpoena? president trump: well, we'll see what happens. i'm just very surprised. i really am by it. yeah. >> what did iran do to prompt you to send an aircraft carrier to the region, the area? president trump: well, they were threatening. and we have information we have information that you don't want to know about. they were very threatening. and we just want to have we have to have great security for this country and for a lot of other places. >> is there a risk of military confrontation, sir? president trump: i guess you could say that always. right? isn't it? i mean, you know, always. i don't want to say no. but hopefully that won't happen. we have one of the most powerful ships in the world that's loaded up, and we don't want to have to do anything. what i'd like to see with iran,
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i'd like to see them call me. you know, john kerry speaks to them a lot. john kerry tells them not to call. that's a violation of the logan act. and, frankly, he should be prosecuted on that. but my people don't want to do anything that's -- only the democrats do that kind of stuff, you know? if it were the opposite way, they'd prosecute him under the logan act. but john kerry violated the logan act. he's talking to iran and has been. has many meetings and many phone calls, and he's telling them what to do. that is a total violation of the logan act. because what they should be doing is their economy is a mess ever since i took away the iran deal. they have inflation that's the highest number i've ever heard. they're having riots every weekend and during the week, even. and what they should be doing is calling me up, sitting down; we can make a deal, a fair deal. we just don't want them to have
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nuclear weapons. not too much to ask. and we would help put them back into great shape. they're in bad shape right now. i look forward to the day where we can actually help iran. we're not looking to hurt iran. i want them to be strong and great and have a great economy. but they're listening to john kerry, who's violated a very important element of what he's supposed to be doing. he violated the logan act. plain and simple. he shouldn't be doing that. but they should call, and if they do, we're open to talk to them. we have no secrets. and they can be very, very strong, financially. they have great potential. very much like north korea. north korea has tremendous potential, economically. and i don't think he's going to blow that. i don't think so. >> can i circle back to trade just for a second? is it still possible to get a trade deal with the chinese this week? president trump: the vice premier, he's one of the most respected men, one of the highest officials in china is
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coming. you know, you heard he wasn't coming. he's coming. i will say this. once the tariffs went on, they upped the meeting. it was supposed to take place originally on thursday. then, about five weeks ago, they said, "how about friday? how about next week? i said, what is this about? i said, don't worry about it. let's taken 100 billion a year. and we put the tariffs on, we made the statement, and then they upped the meeting. how about let's go back to thursday? so i have no idea what's going to happen. i did get, last night, a very beautiful letter from president xi. let's work together. let's see if we can get something done. but they renegotiated the deal. i mean, they took whether it's intellectual property theft, they took many, many parts of that deal and they renegotiated. you can't do that. and i'm different than a lot of people. i happen to think that tariffs for our country are very powerful. you know, we're the piggybank that everybody steals from, including china. we've been paying china $500 billion a year for many, many years.
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china rebuilt their country because of us. they couldn't have done what they're doing. they're building a ship every three weeks. they're building aircraft like you've never seen. fighter jets. i respect it. i don't blame them. i blame our past leadership for allowing this to happen. what i'm doing now with china should've happened many years ago. not just obama, long before obama. i was -- you know, if you look, nafta is one of the first deals ever made. trade deal. but the worst trade deal ever made is the wto, because china was flat-lining for many, many decades. it was flat, right here. the wto came along. we allowed china into the wto, and they became a rocket ship. you got to take a look at a chart sometime. do it. it'll be very interesting. an economic chart. they're here, and they went up like a rocket ship. well, they did it with our money
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-- and others -- and they did it because they're very smart, and they're good people. and i like the president a lot; he's a friend of mine. but i'm representing the usa, and he's representing china. and we're not going to be taken advantage of anymore. we're not going to pay china $500 billion a year. so we put very heavy tariffs on china, as of friday, and we put them on, also, eight months ago. and when people looked at the economic numbers, they were shocked. when they looked at the import/export numbers, they were shocked. they said, "wow, how did they get to this point? this was very good. that was a very good report." they'd never seen that for many years. i said, "try looking at all of the tariffs that china has been paying us for the last eight months." billions and billions of dollars. and that's only because i gave them a break. because we were negotiating good
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will. we were negotiating. i gave them a break. and i said, "let's keep it at 10 percent instead of 25 percent." so now, what we're doing is we're raising it to 25 percent on friday, so it will be $250 billion at 25 percent, and it'll be $325 billion at 25 percent. and we're starting that paperwork today. so we'll see. but you know what? as president of our country, i had to do something about it. and as president of our great country, we're going to be taking in more money than we've ever taken in. and all of these countries, many of them have taken advantage of us, including our allies. they've taken advantage of us on trade. they've taken advantage of us on military. we defend all these countries for nothing, or for a tiny fraction of what it costs. we take care of nato. i'm all of for nato. i'm all for nato. and i think it's just wonderful, but it's different than it was 25 years ago and 40 years ago.
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and i got nato to put up an extra hundred billion dollars. ask secretary general stoltenberg. he's like donald trump's biggest fan. because spending was going down. the contributions that the 28 countries were making, it was heading like a slope down, like a very steep mountain. and then i came, and it went up. like china, it went up like a rocket ship, okay? but i don't like seeing people take advantage. we pay for anywhere from 70 to 100 percent of nato. so we protect nato. we protect european countries. and we protect them, and we protect them beautifully. we're the power. we're the most powerful nation, especially since we've redone our military, redoing and done all of the nuclear. you never want to use it but you have to have it. but we have spent -- and i think congress for this -- $700
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and then $716 billion on our military. our military, when i came to office, was totally depleted. we now have, by far, the strongest military in the world. but we defend countries. when you look at our budget so we're at $716 billion, and russia is at $68 billion. how do you figure that? because russia doesn't go around defending every country in the world and not getting paid for it. and you know what? i don't mind not getting paid. if there's a country that's been horribly treated, and lots of bad things are happening and they're not a rich country. but when we defend the richest countries in the world, and they don't pay us for what we do, and frankly, they go back into closed meetings and they laugh at the stupidity of the united states for doing it -- these are countries with nothing but cash. -- i told very easily the story last night. i picked up $500 million with one phone call to a country. and that's just the beginning. and i've done it with many other countries.
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anyway, but just over the last -- oneort period of time phone call that lasted for a period of, i would say, five minutes, i picked up $500 million because i said, "you're not taking care of us. we're taking care of you, but you're not taking care. it's not fair." so, really, the word is "not fair." nato doesn't treat us fairly at all, but now they're starting to pay. and if you look at mr. stoltenberg, he will tell you he's never seen anything like it. a hundred billion dollars. and that's a low number. they're paying $100 billion more. how did he this. -- but how do feel about this. germany. you're supposed to be paying 2 percent. germany is paying 1 percent. they say 1.3, but call it 1 percent, because it really is closer to 1 percent. germany pays to russia billions of dollars a month for the pipeline, and yet we're supposed to be defending germany from russia. so germany is giving the so-called enemy -- i don't call
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it an enemy, i want to get along with russia and i want to get along with china, because i'm smart. stupid people don't want to get along. because i'm smart. this witch hunt hurt us in our relationships with a lot of countries. it was a very expensive, horrible thing for our country. and, by the way, should never, ever happen again to a president. two years i've been going through this nonsense. and now we have a good report. and now guys like jerry nadler, who i thought for many years -- successfully, i might add -- back in new york, in manhattan. he was a manhattan congressman. i beat him all the time. and i come to washington and now i have to beat him again over nothing. over nothing. over a hoax. and they know it's a hoax. they're smart. nadler is a smart guy. schiff is a smart guy. when schiff goes to the microphone, he's conning this whole country. and he knows that. and he goes back into a room, and he talks to his friends, and he laughs. because that's the way life is. but our country is doing great. we're going to find out about china tonight.
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and i think, in the end, you're going to be very impressed with the kind of things we're doing. and the reason they were so surprised with the numbers two, three weeks ago -- not the 3.2 gdp, which everybody was surprised that -- but maybe, more importantly, export numbers, import numbers. because we have billions of dollars coming to our country that our country never would have seen with a regular president. this should have been done many years ago. and i told president xi of china, and i tell abe, who is a good friend of mine -- prime minister of japan. doing a great job. i tell him, i tell everybody i say, "i don't blame you. i blame the people that ran the united states, and i blame their trade representatives. and frankly, i blame our presidents. because this should have never happened." we've been losing, for years, billion -- not million -- $800 million is a
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lot, but we've been losing 800 billion dollars on trade. eight hundred billion dollars. we're going to stop that. and we've already started. so we have a meeting tonight at 5:00 with the top people from china, and we'll let you know what happens. thank you all very much. [applause] >> i like the red sox. whohat to you say to those say you're too divisive? president trump: just so you understand, we gave puerto rico $91 billion for the hurricane. that's the largest amount of money ever given to any state -- talking about states and puerto rego, a little different. -- $91 billion. got 30. florida got 12. puerto rico got $91 billion. so i think the people of puerto
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rico should really like president trump. now, that money was given by congress, but they got $91 billion. now, you remember how big the hurricane was in texas? the largest water dump in the history of our country, they say. three times. it went in, went out, went in. texas got $30 billion. florida got, actually, anywhere between $9 million and four dollars. $9 million and $12 billion. puerto rico got $91 billion. and now the democrats are trying to hold up the money from georgia, from south carolina, from alabama, to florida. they're trying to hold it up. they're hurting florida. there holding -- i mean, what they're doing to north carolina, to louisiana. they're trying to hold relief aid. because puerto rico, which got $91 billion, have to love their president -- they want to get puerto rico more money, so they're willing to sacrifice georgia, alabama, south carolina, north carolina, florida, louisiana, and other
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states. the democrats are doing that. they are very divisive people. thank you very much. >> president trump announced he and announce patrick shanahan to be the next secretary of defense. mr. shanahan reacted to the announcement outside the pentagon pentagon. >> a good day. >> good day, right? super happy. are you excited? >> very excited. we have all worked together. the national defense