Administration of Donald J. Trump, 2019

Remarks and an Exchange With Reporters Prior to Departure for London, United Kingdom

June 2, 2019

The President. Hello, everybody. So we'll be going to the U.K. I think it'll be very important. It certainly will be very interesting. There's a lot going on in the U.K. And I'm sure it's going to work out very well for them.

As you know, they want to do trade with the United States, and I think there's an opportunity for a very big trade deal at some point in the near future. And we'll see how that works out. Our country is doing incredibly well. Our businesses are doing well.

We're going to clog up the border. We're going to stop the border. Mexico is making hundreds of billions of dollars for many, many years. And they have to do something about the border. Everyone is coming through Mexico—including drugs, including human trafficking—and we're going to stop it or we're not going to do business, and that's going to be it. It's very simple.

They're sending a big delegation right here to the White House on Wednesday, as I understand it. And we'll see what can be done. But if it's not done, you know what we're going to be doing. And I'm really okay with that.

Shooting in Virginia Beach, Virginia/Gun Silencers

Q. The suspect in the Virginia Beach shooting used a silencer on his weapon. Do you believe that silencers should be restricted?

The President. I don't like them at all.

British Exit From the European Union

Q. Mr. President, is it appropriate for you to be weighing in on Brexit and the Prime Minister—who should be the next Prime Minister?

The President. Well, people ask me questions—like you; you're asking me a question. Don't ask me the question if you don't want me to talk about it.

Q. Would you be willing to——

Q. Mr. President, what specifically does——

The President. Go ahead.

Mexico/Border Security/Illegal Immigration

Q. What specifically would Mexico——

The President. Talk—talk up.

Q. What specifically would Mexico have to do to get the tariffs removed?

The President. They have to stop the illegal flow—the flow of drugs; of immigrants, illegal immigrants—people that have not gone through the process. We have people—we want people to come into our country, but they have to come in legally. We have a list of people—literally, millions of people—applying for membership and citizenship to our great country. These people walk in; nobody knows who they are. They don't know the problems. We have a lot of crime that's able to walk in. Our Border Patrol has apprehended record numbers of people. They're doing an incredible job.

We're starting, as you know, the process. We're getting them out. So they may think they get in because the laws are no good, but they're getting out. And for that, the laws are very good. So we're taking them out almost as fast as they come in. But it's a big, big job.

And if the Democrats would wise up and give us the proper laws—the proper immigration laws—we could solve the problem in 1 day. But, in the meantime, Mexico can do it.

And by the way, beyond the immigration laws, Mexico should be doing it. What Mexico has been doing to this country for so many years—like 25 to 30 years—with drugs and human trafficking and illegals all pouring through Mexico—no good—and caravans. No good.


Q. What do you intend to do about Idlib—about the massacre of civilians in Idlib Province in Syria?

The President. I don't like what's happening in Syria with Idlib. I gave people a warning 7 months ago. I stopped it. I don't like what's happening. They're killing indiscriminately many, many civilians. Bad things are happening over there.

Q. But what can you do about it?

Member of Parliament Boris Johnson and Brexit Party Leader Nigel P. Farage of the United Kingdom

Q. Mr. President, can you say whether you're going to meet with Boris Johnson—[inaudible]?

The President. Well, I think I may meet with him. He's been a friend of mine. He's been very nice. I have a very good relationship with him. I have a very good relationship with Nigel Farage, with many people over there. And we'll see what happens, but I may meet with him. They want to meet. We'll see what happens.

Australia-U.S. Relations

Q. Can you say also whether you're considering any tariffs on Australian goods?

The President. The Australian situation is interesting, but the relationship is very strong. No, we're doing a very—very special relationship with Australia.

Q. Do you agree that——

Q. The Washington Post has released a recording of Secretary of State Pompeo saying he doesn't think that your Middle East peace plan will gain any traction when he was speaking with Jewish leaders.

The President. You have to talk up. We have a helicopter.

Arab-Israeli Peace Process

Q. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has been caught on audio tape speaking to Jewish leaders saying that he doesn't think your Middle East peace plan will gain any traction. Do you have any comment? The President. Well, let's see what happens. I mean, look, we're doing our best to help the Middle East to get a peace plan. And he may be right. I mean, most people would say that. I think we have a good chance, but we'll see what happens.

In the meantime, Israel is all messed up with their election. I mean, that came out of the blue 3 days ago. So that's all messed up. They ought to get their act together. I mean, Bibi got elected. Now, all of a sudden, they're going to have to go through the process again until September? That's ridiculous. So we're not happy about that.

But if we can get a Mideast peace plan, that'd be good. And when Mike says that, I understand when he says that because most people think it can't be done. I think it probably can. But, as I say often, we'll see what happens.

United Kingdom-U.S. Relations

Q. Are you willing to apologize to the royal family or should you clarify your comments about Duchess Meghan Markle?

The President. No, I made no bad comment. Thank you.

Death of Saudi Journalist Jamal Khashoggi

Q. Mr. President, are you willing to say that MBS is responsible for Khashoggi's death?

The President. When did this come up again? What are you, back—are you back——

Q. Jared. Jared talked to Axios.

The President. Are you back, what, 4 months ago? No.

Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi/Democratic Party

Q. Nancy Pelosi was booed yesterday at a speech in San Francisco by Democratic activists who screamed: "Impeach. Impeach."

The President. Well, you know why? Because people want her to do work. People want the Democrats to pass immigration laws. They want the Democrats, very importantly, to do something on infrastructure. They want the Democrats to reduce drug pricing. That's the reason they're all getting booed.

Q. But other Democrats want to see you impeached, sir.


Q. If it comes to impeachment—I know you don't think there's a basis for impeachment, but is your team prepared for that possibility?

The President. There is no basis whatsoever for impeachment. None. There was no collusion. There was no obstruction. There was no crime. The crime was by the Democrats. The crime was by the Democrats. There is no legal basis for impeachment. It's a big witch hunt. Everybody knows it, including the Democrats.

Mayor Sadiq Khan of London, United Kingdom

Q. Would you being willing to meet with Sadiq Khan in London, the mayor?

The President. No, I don't think much of him. I think that he's a—he's the twin of de Blasio, except shorter.


Q. What about Jeremy Corbyn? The President. Thank you, everybody.

NOTE: The President spoke at 8:08 p.m. on the South Lawn at the White House prior to boarding Marine One. In his remarks, he referred to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel; and Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York City. Reporters referred to DeWayne Craddock, suspected gunman in the shooting at the Virginia Beach Municipal Center in Virginia Beach, VA, on May 31; Duchess Meghan of Sussex, wife of Prince Harry of the United Kingdom; Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman bin Abd al-Aziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia; White House Senior Adviser Jared C. Kushner; and British Member of Parliament and Labour Party Leader Jeremy B. Corbyn.

Categories: Interviews With the News Media : Exchanges with reporters :: White House.

Locations: Washington, DC.

Names: de Blasio, Bill; Farage, Nigel P.; Johnson, Boris; Kahn, Sadiq; Netanyahu, Benjamin; Pompeo, Michael R.

Subjects: Australia : Relations with U.S.; Communications : News media :: Presidential interviews; Defense and national security : Border security; Drug abuse and trafficking : Foreign narcotics traffickers; Homeland Security, Department of : Customs and Border Protection, U.S.; Immigration and naturalization : Illegal immigration; Immigration and naturalization : Reform; Israel : Prime Minister; Law enforcement and crime : Gun violence, prevention efforts; Law enforcement and crime : Trafficking in persons, efforts to combat; Mexico : Immigration enforcement, cooperation with U.S.; Middle East : Arab-Israeli conflict, peace process; Russia : 2016 U.S. elections, interference; State, Department of : Secretary; Syria : Civil war and sectarian conflict; United Kingdom : Trade with U.S.

DCPD Number: DCPD201900366.