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President Donald J. Trump Holds a Joint Press Conference with the President of Romania – 6/9/2017 

 

Klaus Werner Iohannis is the current President of Romania. He became leader of the National Liberal Party in 2014, after having served as leader of the Democratic Forum of Germans in Romania from 2002 to 2013. Wikipedia
Born: June 13, 1959 (age 57), Sibiu, Romania
Office: President of Romania since 2014

 

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Remarks by President Trump and President Iohannis of Romania in a Joint Press Conference

Rose Garden

2:51 P.M. EDT

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  President Iohannis, thank you for being here.  It’s an honor to welcome such a good friend of America to the White House.  

As you know, the people of Romania and America share much in common — a love of freedom, proud cultures, rich traditions, and a vast and storied landscape to call home.  The relationship between our two countries stretches back well over a century.  But today we especially reaffirm and celebrate our strategic partnership that began 20 years ago next month.  That partnership covers many dimensions, including economic, military, and cultural ties.  And today we are making those ties even stronger. 

Mr. President, your visit comes at an important moment not just in this partnership, but among all of the responsible nations of the world.  I have just returned from a historic trip to Europe and the Middle East, where I worked to strengthen our alliances, forge new friendships, and unite all civilized peoples in the fight against terrorism.  No civilized nation can tolerate this violence, or allow this wicked ideology to spread on its shores.

I addressed a summit of more than 50 Arab and Muslim leaders — a unique meeting in the history of nations — where key players in the region agreed to stop supporting terrorism,   whether it be financial, military or even moral support.

The nation of Qatar, unfortunately, has historically been a funder of terrorism at a very high level, and in the wake of that conference, nations came together and spoke to me about confronting Qatar over its behavior.  So we had a decision to make:  Do we take the easy road, or do we finally take a hard but necessary action?  We have to stop the funding of terrorism.  I decided, along with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, our great generals and military people, the time had come to call on Qatar to end its funding — they have to end that funding — and its extremist ideology in terms of funding. 

I want to call on all other nations to stop immediately supporting terrorism.  Stop teaching people to kill other people. Stop filling their minds with hate and intolerance.  I won’t name other countries, but we are not done solving the problem, but we will solve that problem.  Have no choice.  

This is my great priority because it is my first duty as President to keep our people safe.  Defeating ISIS and other terror organizations is something I have emphasized all during my campaign and right up until the present.  To do that, stop funding, stop teaching hate, and stop the killing.  

For Qatar, we want you back among the unity of responsible nations.  We ask Qatar, and other nations in the region to do more and do it faster.

I want to thank Saudi Arabia, and my friend, King Salman, and all of the countries who participated in that very historic summit.  It was truly historic.  There has never been anything like it before and perhaps there never will be again.  Hopefully, it will be the beginning of the end of funding terrorism.  It will, therefore, be the beginning of the end to terrorism.  No more funding.

I also want to thank the Romanian people for everything they contribute to our common defense and to the fight against the evil menace of terrorism.  They have their own difficulties with it, and they’ve come a long way and they’re doing a lot.  Romania has been a valuable member of the coalition to defeat ISIS, and it’s the fourth-largest contributor of troops in Afghanistan. There, 23 of your citizens have paid the ultimate price.  And America honors their sacrifice.

I want to recognize President Iohannis for his leadership in committing Romania this year to increase its defense spending from 1.4 percent of GDP to over 2 percent.  We hope our other NATO allies will follow Romania’s lead on meeting their financial obligations and paying their fair share for the cost of defense. But I will say this, that because of our actions, money is starting to pour into NATO.  The money is starting to pour in.  Other countries are starting to realize that it’s time to pay up, and they’re doing that.  Very proud of that fact.

As you know, I have been an advocate for strengthening our NATO Alliance through greater responsibility and burden-sharing among member nations.  And that is what is happening.  Because, together, we can confront the common security challenges facing the world.

Mr. President, I want to applaud your courage and your courageous efforts in Romania to fight corruption and defend the rule of law.  This work is necessary to create an environment where trade and commerce can flourish and where citizens can prosper.  I look forward to working with you to deepen the ties of both commerce and culture between our two countries. 

Romanians have made many contributions to the United States, and to the world.  Very notable among them was Nobel Prize laureate Elie Wiesel, who was born in Romania and, sadly, passed away almost one year ago.  And I understand that earlier this week, the American Jewish Committee presented President Iohannis with its very prestigious Light Unto the Nations Award, for his work to further Holocaust remembrance and education in Romania.  I join the AJC in saluting your leadership in that vital cause.

The people of Romania have endured many, many hardships, but they have made a truly remarkable, historical journey.  The future of Romania and Romania’s relationship with the United States is very, very bright. 

President Iohannis, I thank you for your leadership, and I thank you again for being here today.  I look forward to strengthening our alliance with your country and our bonds with your people.  The relationship has been good, but now it’s stronger than ever.  

Thank you very much.

PRESIDENT IOHANNIS:  President Trump, thank you so much for the words you found for Romania, for the Romanian people, and for me.  Thank you very much for the invitation to be here today with you.  And thank you so much for arranging this nice weather in this place.

Mr. President, I’m very glad that we had such a good meeting.  And this is due to your strong leadership, and this is also due to our strong partnership.  Obviously, the fact that we celebrate 20 years of strategic partnership this year is important for both our nations, and it is important to know — and this is what I want to underline — that this partnership with the United States of America shaped Romania as it is today. 

Romania, a solid democracy with a solid and sustainable economic growth.  Romania which stands together with the U.S. troops in Afghanistan.  We stand together in Iraq.  Mr. President, this partnership contributed greatly to what Romania is today.  And this partnership was and is very important.

And I think this partnership not only has to continue, this partnership has to become stronger.  This partnership has to define our bilateral relation, and this partnership has to contribute to solve so many problems.  

President Trump, you mentioned terrorism.  I’m very glad that, due to your strong leadership, NATO decided to go against terrorism.  Your involvement made so many nations conscious of the fact that we have to share the burden inside NATO.  And this is why Romania also decided — and if I’m right, I think this is the first country during your mandate to step up to 2 percent of GDP for defense spending.

A significant part of this defense spending is going into strategic acquisitions.  And I hope, President Trump, that we find good ways together to make good use of this money.

Romania is very conscious of the fact that we stand on the Eastern Flank and we heavily rely on your partnership, President Trump, because we cannot stand there without the U.S.  We cannot stand there alone.  On the other hand, our partnership has a huge opportunity to step up not only in security matters, but also in commercial and economic matters.  And this is very important.

Romania is a member of the European Union.  And I think it’s the best interest of you, Mr. President, to have a strong European Union as a partner.  This is vital for all of us.  Our relationship, the transatlantic link is vital.  The transatlantic link is not about diplomacy, about policy — it’s at the basis of our Western civilization.  And together, we will make it stronger.  Together, we will make it better.

NATO and the European Union do not have to compete against each other.  They have to work together.  They have to work in such a manner as to produce synergetic effects.  Make NATO stronger.  Make European stronger.  Make the United States of America stronger.

And this is what we decided, President Trump and I, to make our partnership stronger, better, more enduring.  And this will lead very soon to an enhanced economic exchange — to better commerce.  And this is what we all decide and what we wish, because we are responsible, President Trump and I, not only for the security.  We are responsible for the well-being of our citizens.  And this is what we are deciding to do.  

Thank you so much, President Trump.  

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Thank you.

Dave Boyer, Washington Times.  Dave.  Come on, Dave.

Q    Thank you, Mr. President.  Apologies.  

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  That’s all right, Dave.

Q    Mr. President, this morning, on Twitter, you were referring to the testimony of James Comey vindicating you.  But I wondered if you could tell us in person, sir, why you feel that his testimony vindicated you when it really boils down to his word against your word.  And if you could also tell us, sir, do tapes exist of your conversations with him?

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Well, I’ll tell you about that maybe sometime in the very near future.  But in the meantime, no collusion, no obstruction.  He’s a leaker.  But we want to get back to running our great country — jobs.  Trade deficits, we want them to disappear fast.  North Korea, a big problem.  Middle East, a big problem.  So that’s what I am focused on.  That’s what I have been focused on.  

But yesterday showed no collusion, no obstruction.  We are doing really well.  That was an excuse by the Democrats who lost an election that some people think they shouldn’t have lost, because it’s almost impossible for the Democrats to lose the Electoral College, as you know.  We have to run up the whole East Coast and you have to win everything as a Republican.  And that’s just what we did.  

So it was just an excuse.  But we were very, very happy.  And frankly, James Comey confirmed a lot of what I said.  And some of the things that he said just weren’t true.  

Thank you very much.

Do you have a question?

Q    Thank you.  Mr. President, if you could tell us — a couple weeks ago, President Trump was in Brussels at the NATO meeting, and not only was he encouraging NATO members to pay up the 2 percent required of GDP for national defense, but he also was saying that countries, including yours, who had not paid 2 percent in the past should make up for that difference.  Do you think that’s fair?

PRESIDENT IOHANNIS:  I was in Brussels, and I met President Trump and I listened to his speech and I liked it.  Because, you see, NATO is based on values, but it is ultimately a military alliance.  And you know, military spendings are complicated and you need a lot of money, because NATO is the strongest alliance the Earth ever saw and we want to keep it that way.  

So we have to spend money for defense purposes.  And spending money means if you’re in an alliance, everybody has to spend money.  This is called burden-sharing.  And I fully agree, Mr. President, to that.

So, of course, some people liked this better, and some didn’t like it so much.  But it’s a simple fact that we have to do this.  Not as a purpose in itself; we have to do this to stay strong, to be strong, and to defend our nations.

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  One hundred percent correct.  And you know, one of the things I was referring to during that speech was the fact that, yes, they haven’t paid what they should be paying now, but for many years, they haven’t been paying.  So I said, do we ever go back and say, how about paying the money from many, many years passed?  

Now, I know no President has ever asked that question.  But I do.  And we’re going to make NATO very strong.  We need the money to make it strong.  You can’t just do what we’ve been doing in the past.  So I did say, yes, you haven’t paid this year, but what about the past years, the many past years where you haven’t paid?  Perhaps you should pay some or all of that money back.

You have a question?

Q    Thank you.  I have a question for President Trump.  On the matter of security, sir, many of the countries on the Eastern Flank of NATO, including Romania, see Russia as a threat to the security and the peace in the region.  Do you share this vision? And do you think that the United States should act under Article 5, if any of these countries would be under military aggression?
Thank you very much.

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Well, I’m committing the United States, and have committed, but I’m committing the United States to Article 5.  And certainly we are there to protect.  And that’s one of the reasons that I want people to make sure we have a very, very strong force by paying the kind of money necessary to have that force.  But, yes, absolutely, I’d be committed to Article 5.

Q    Thank you.  Mr. President, were there any discussion about the Visa Waiver Program for Romania?  Is there a time frame for including our country in this program?  Thank you.

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  We didn’t discuss it — 

PRESIDENT IOHANNIS:  Yes —

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  We didn’t discuss it.  But there would be certainly — it would be something we will discuss.

Mr. President.

PRESIDENT IOHANNIS:  I mentioned this issue, and I also mentioned it during other meetings I had, because this is important for us, it’s important for Romanians who want to come to the United States.  And you see more and more people come, President Trump, from Romania to the United States.  Some come as tourists.  Some come for business.  And those who come for business should be encouraged.  

So the matter of visa waiver would be probably important to discuss.  And we all hope that we will advance on this.

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Good.  

Look at those hands up there, President.  Do you have this in Romania, too?  I don’t know.  (Laughter.)  I’ve got the microphone.  If I could only sell that.  If I could only sell it.

Who would like to ask — should I take one of the killer networks that treat me so badly as fake news?  Should I do that?

Go ahead, Jon.  Be fair, Jon.

Q    Oh, absolutely.

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Remember how nice you used to be before I ran?  Such a nice man.

Q    Always fair.  Mr. President, can we get back to James Comey’s testimony.  You suggested he didn’t tell the truth in everything he said.  He did say, under oath, that you told him to let the Flynn — you said you hoped the Flynn investigation he could let —

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  I didn’t say that.  

Q    So he lied about that?

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Well, I didn’t say that.  I mean, I will tell you I didn’t say that.  

Q    And did he ask you to pledge —

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  And there would be nothing wrong if I did say it, according to everybody that I’ve read today.  But I did not say that.

Q    And did he ask for a pledge of loyalty from you?  That’s another thing he said.

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  No, he did not.

Q    So he said those things under oath.  Would you be willing to speak under oath to give your version of those events?

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  One hundred percent.  I didn’t say under oath — I hardly know the man.  I’m not going to say, I want you to pledge allegiance.  Who would do that?  Who would ask a man to pledge allegiance under oath?  I mean, think of it.  I hardly know the man.  It doesn’t make sense.  No, I didn’t say that, and I didn’t say the other.

Q    So if Robert Mueller wanted to speak with you about that you would be willing to talk to him?

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  I would be glad to tell him exactly what I just told you, Jon.

Q    And you seem to be hinting that there are recordings of those conversations.

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  I’m not hinting anything.  I’ll tell you about it over a very short period of time.

Q    When is that?  

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Okay.  Do you have a question here?

Q    When will you tell us about the recordings?

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Over a fairly short period of time.

Q    Why not now?

Q    Are there tapes —

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Oh, you’re going to be very disappointed when you hear the answer.  Don’t worry.  

Jon, do you have a question for the President?

Q    Yes.  Thank you.  And, President Iohannis, you are no stranger to Russian aggression.  Vladimir Putin recently suggested that Romania could be in Russia’s crosshairs.  How concerned should the world be about Russian aggression in your region?  And how concerned should we be here in the United States about what Russia tried to do in our election, sir?

PRESIDENT IOHANNIS:  Everybody is concerned.  But, you see, being concerned should lead you to being prepared.  So in my opinion, we have to be very clear, very simple and very straightforward if we talk about Russia and with Russia.  In my opinion, we need dialogue.  But, on the other hand, we need what we all together decided in NATO, a strong deterrence.  So this combination — strong deterrence and dialogue — should lead towards a solution which is feasible for every part. 

Q    Hello, Mr. President Trump.  You mentioned earlier the anticorruption fight in Romania.  It is a matter of high importance in our country.  But we see now that the anticorruption fight and the efforts to consolidate the rule of law are sometimes undermined by some politicians — part of what we can call the “Bucharest swamp.”  Is your administration going to support the anticorruption fight in Romania?  And how can you do it?  Thank you.

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Well, we support very strongly Romania.  And therefore, obviously we do support that fight on anticorruption.  We will always support that.  And we support your President.  We think he’s done an outstanding job.  Very popular, very solid, working very hard.  We know everything that’s going on.  And, yeah, and he’s going to win that fight.  He’s going to win that battle.  But he has our support.

Q    Do you think corruption in Romania is a problem for the U.S.-Romania partnership and for the American investor  — because we still have corruption in Romania, despite this anticorruption fight.

PRESIDENT TRUMP:  Well, you do.  But I can tell you that there are many American investors right now going to Romania and investing.  In fact, I was given a chart just before our meeting, and we have people going over to Romania and investing, and they weren’t doing that a number of years ago.  So that shows very, very big progress.  And there really are a lot of congratulations in store.  But a lot of people are investing from our country to yours.

And people love — from Romania — the United States.  And they come here a lot, and we’re very proud of them.  

Thank you all very much.

END  
3:18 P.M. EDT

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President Trump Delivers Remarks – Department of Transportation – 6/7/2017 – #Infrastructure

 

Secretaries Chow and Zinke are working with State and Local Leaders to develop plans to replace America’s decaying infrastructure and construct new road, rails, pipelines, tunnels and bridges all across our nation.  Permitting has blocked many important projects from getting off the ground.  This is a project that President Trump is working on to simplify.

Later int he afternoon, President Trump met with Governors and Mayors for a Summit on #Infrastructure

 

Remarks by President Trump at the Top of the Infrastructure Summit with Governors and Mayors

State Dining Room

3:36 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Well, thank you all very much for being here.  This is fantastic.  In fact, what we’ll do — in a minute, we’ll go around the room real quickly.  I see some extra people showed up so that, frankly, we don’t have too much room, Rick.  It’s a little tight in here.

GOVERNOR RICK SCOTT:  They should all be in Florida.

THE PRESIDENT:  It’s a little tight, but that’s okay.  Great honor.  and it’s my pleasure to welcome so many incredible governors, tribal leaders, mayors, county commissioners, and other leaders of our country to the White House Infrastructure Summit.  We’re doing a great job with respect to infrastructure all over, and we’re very proud of it.  It’s going to take off like a rocket ship — moving very quickly.  Together, we’re going to rebuild America.  

Earlier this week, we announced our plan to revolutionize air traffic control.  And yesterday, I traveled to Cincinnati to discuss our new vision for American infrastructure and our plans to modernize our vital inland waterways, which are so important and which are, in many cases, crumbling.

Today, we’re here to talk about how we will create the infrastructure of the future by partnering with the states and local governments — of which you form a very important part, right?  This is the group.  And it’s a great group.

You are the stewards of the vast majority of our nation’s roads and bridges and airports.  Yet, for too long, Washington has slowed down your projects and driven up your costs, and driven them up beyond anything even recognizable.  Those days are over.  We are going to move quickly, we’re going to move very, very intelligently, and we’re going to get the job done, under budget and ahead of schedule — something the government doesn’t hear too much.

We are already taking action to dramatically reduce the time it takes to get permits and approvals.  If you want to build a highway in the United States, you currently have to obtain approvals, generally speaking, on average, 16.  And usually, 10 federal agencies are involved.  It’s a process that can take well over 10 years just to get the approvals.  We’re not talking about building, we’re talking about just getting the approvals.  So we want to streamline that process, and we think we can get it down to a number that’s closer to two years, and maybe even less than that.  That would be a big, big difference.

In addition to reforming our broken permitting system, we want to partner with state and local governments to better meet the needs of our citizens.  My budget proposal includes a massive investment in new federal support for infrastructure.  These dollars will be matched by significant private, state, and local dollars for maximum efficiency and accountability. 

Already, many of you are pioneering innovative solutions for your citizens and you’re already looking at developments and working with us.  To take just one example, in Florida, Governor Rick Scott — hello, Rick — has partnered with private sector investors — and he’s really been partnering a lot — to build projects such as the I-4 Ultimate Project, which has been called “the largest infrastructure project in state history.”  That’s Florida — big state.  It’s going to be a great project.

Because of their innovation approach and because of the way they went about getting it and getting the approvals, the project is anticipated to be completed 17 years earlier than it would have through more traditional funding methods.

These are the kind of projects we want to see all across the country.  Working together, I’m confident that we can translate every taxpayer dollar into new pavement on our streets, new locks and new dams, new pipes for our water — and I will tell you we’re just going to have a much better, more modern, more acceptable infrastructure.  We want to bring it to the top of the world.  

We’ve gone way down in the list.  If you look worldwide, we have gone way, way down.  We want to go back to the top.  We used to be at the top every year, routinely.  And now we’ve gone down quite a bit.  So I don’t like that, you don’t like that, and we’re going to change it.  

I just want to again say it’s an honor to have you here.  You’re really the stewards of the great cities and the great states and the great areas and communities, and you’re going to be very important to what we’re going with infrastructure.  

So I think what I’ll do is start with Rick Scott of Florida, and maybe just around.  You give the name, location.  You have a couple of people from the press.  Not too many.  Let’s see.  Not too many.  (Laughter.)  And I’m sure they’re going to be excited to hear who you are.  They’re desperate to hear who you are.  (Laughter.)  
  
END
3:42 P.M. EDT

 

Comey Grilled On CAPITOL Hill – Hannity – 6/8/2017

Comey testified that President Trump was “NOT” under investigation but it was the only thing that was “not leaked”.

  

Former attorney general Loretta Lynch was able to influence Comey to call the HILLARY CLINTON investigation a “matter”.  This is to hide the truth,

What happened when Loretta Lynch met with Bill Clinton? Why is that not against the law?

James Comey has a double standard. One for Hillary Clinton and one for President Trump. That showes a bias that borders on total hate.

After so many months of endless pushing of all these theories by the Media, there is no such thing as a “Trump Russia collusion.”  THE MEDIA WAS PROVEN WRONG ON THE TRUMP-RUSSIA COLLUSION for good. It’s time for journalists to stop with the false narrative. They have been exposed for the liars that they are.

Today President Trump was exonerated. This has been a ten-month witch hunts to stop President Trump.  There are no clouds over President Trump now.  He can get to work for the American people.  

It is my belief that Comey should be taken in for questioning in all that has transpired.  The head of the FBI wishes he were a stronger man?  Maybe Comey should have followed the law.  Comey broke the law by leaking his own memo to the media. 

The hate that has been sent to all Trumps by the left or anyone that expresses a like towards President Trump is inexcusable.  This is to undermine the will of the people. This is a serious problem in the country.  The left has overplayed their hand.  This is one big witch hunt.

Americans we want President Trump to be given a chance to do his job.  He never broke any laws, but Comey did.  Americans we voted for President Trump to work for us, we gave him a mandate and he is trying to fulfill that mandate.

Hi, I’m James Comey-I leaked information to get Special Counsel to go after POTUS – I’m a criminal 

  1. Hi I’m James Comey 😜I’m angry cause I was fired🤡
  2. I leaked a memo to get a special prosecutor to go after President Trump 😡
  3. I am with Hillary 
  4. I am a loser 🤡
  5. I broke the privacy act🤑
  6. I broke the law😡
  7. I admitted I leaked info😩
  8. I AM A CRIMINAL😡
  9. I have to be investigated 😜I admitted I broke the law😡🤑
  10. The Obama administration was pressuring the FBI to not bring a trial for Hillary Clinton. To downplay it as an FBI MATTER AND NOT AN INVESTIGATION🤡

How political correctness is killing America and the world – 6/7/2017

 

Romans 12:2 ESV (Political Correctness)

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of GOD, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

 

These days nobody wants to call the enemy by name! Political correctness has totally taken over today’s society just like in the 1940s, and that is how the Nazi regime got away with killing so many Jews, Christians and other innocents.

 

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Today’s war we are fighting is a very different war in that it is a war with millions of radical Muslims. Everyone is walking on egg shells so as not to be called an islamophobe and to appease this so called religion while it continually encroaches upon our society.  I am not anti-muslim, I am anti Radical Islamic Terrorists.  But how do you separate the religion from its Sharia Law which is not compatible with our American Constitution and it will NEVER be accepted in our society. This ideology wants to take over the world. How do we stop them?

 

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The Nazis didn’t want peace and today radical Islamic terrorists don’t want peace either, they want to take over. We have to fight terror with Power, Strength, Conviction and Unity. Not with political correctness.

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Part Source: Israel Video Network

 

President Trump was “Never Under Investigation” – “Never Said Let Russia Investigation Go” – 6/7/2017

By now, we all know that Former FBI Director James Comey is set to testify before the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence tomorrow.   Comey will speak about the investigation into ALLEGED Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

The entire Russian interference rhetoric is being used by the left as a tool to destabilize the stock market and to foment mistrust for our President and his administration.  Since election day, President TRUMP has worked hard every day to achieve his goals for America, but this Russian interference cloud keeps hanging over him, a “left created cloud” to manipulate the day’s headlines.

We now know that President Trump was Never personally under investigation, and he never asked FBI Director Comey to LET THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION GO.  So now we move on to hearing the actual words coming out of Comey’s mouth and watch the Circus clowns on the left contort to mislead and misinform the rest of the world. 

I have attached the “FULL TEXT” of James Comey’s Prepared Remarks for His Congressional Testimony. I leave you now to read the information below so that you can be prepared for tomorrow.  You will know the facts and will be able to compare the truth from the lies the left will try to spew out in the hopes that they will stick somewhere to achieve their goals.  NOT!!!

 

The committee has released the full text of Comey’s prepared remarks. Read them below:

Chairman Burr, Ranking Member Warner, Members of the Committee. Thank you for inviting me to appear before you today. I was asked to testify today to describe for you my interactions with President-Elect and President Trump on subjects that I understand are of interest to you. I have not included every detail from my conversations with the President, but, to the best of my recollection, I have tried to include information that may be relevant to the Committee.

January 6 Briefing

I first met then-President-Elect Trump on Friday, January 6 in a conference room at Trump Tower in New York. I was there with other Intelligence Community (IC) leaders to brief him and his new national security team on the findings of an IC assessment concerning Russian efforts to interfere in the election. At the conclusion of that briefing, I remained alone with the President Elect to brief him on some personally sensitive aspects of the information assembled during the assessment.

The IC leadership thought it important, for a variety of reasons, to alert the incoming President to the existence of this material, even though it was salacious and unverified. Among those reasons were: (1) we knew the media was about to publicly report the material and we believed the IC should not keep knowledge of the material and its imminent release from the President-Elect; and (2) to the extent there was some effort to compromise an incoming President, we could blunt any such effort with a defensive briefing.

The Director of National Intelligence asked that I personally do this portion of the briefing because I was staying in my position and because the material implicated the FBI’s counter-intelligence responsibilities. We also agreed I would do it alone to minimize potential embarrassment to the President-Elect. Although we agreed it made sense for me to do the briefing, the FBI’s leadership and I were concerned that the briefing might create a situation where a new President came into office uncertain about whether the FBI was conducting a counter-intelligence investigation of his personal conduct.

It is important to understand that FBI counter-intelligence investigations are different than the more-commonly known criminal investigative work. The Bureau’s goal in a counter-intelligence investigation is to understand the technical and human methods that hostile foreign powers are using to influence the United States or to steal our secrets. The FBI uses that understanding to disrupt those efforts. Sometimes disruption takes the form of alerting a person who is targeted for recruitment or influence by the foreign power. Sometimes it involves hardening a computer system that is being attacked. Sometimes it involves “turning” the recruited person into a double-agent, or publicly calling out the behavior with sanctions or expulsions of embassy-based intelligence officers. On occasion, criminal prosecution is used to disrupt intelligence activities.

Because the nature of the hostile foreign nation is well known, counterintelligence investigations tend to be centered on individuals the FBI suspects to be witting or unwitting agents of that foreign power. When the FBI develops reason to believe an American has been targeted for recruitment by a foreign power or is covertly acting as an agent of the foreign power, the FBI will “open an investigation” on that American and use legal authorities to try to learn more about the nature of any relationship with the foreign power so it can be disrupted.

In that context, prior to the January 6 meeting, I discussed with the FBI’s leadership team whether I should be prepared to assure President-Elect Trump that we were not investigating him personally. That was true; we did not have an open counter-intelligence case on him. We agreed I should do so if circumstances warranted. During our one-on-one meeting at Trump Tower, based on President-Elect Trump’s reaction to the briefing and without him directly asking the question, I offered that assurance.

I felt compelled to document my first conversation with the President-Elect in a memo. To ensure accuracy, I began to type it on a laptop in an FBI vehicle outside Trump Tower the moment I walked out of the meeting. Creating written records immediately after one-on-one conversations with Mr. Trump was my practice from that point forward. This had not been my practice in the past. I spoke alone with President Obama twice in person (and never on the phone) – once in 2015 to discuss law enforcement policy issues and a second time, briefly, for him to say goodbye in late 2016. In neither of those circumstances did I memorialize the discussions. I can recall nine one-on-one conversations with President Trump in four months – three in person and six on the phone.

January 27 Dinner

The President and I had dinner on Friday, January 27 at 6:30 pm in the Green Room at the White House. He had called me at lunchtime that day and invited me to dinner that night, saying he was going to invite my whole family, but decided to have just me this time, with the whole family coming the next time. It was unclear from the conversation who else would be at the dinner, although I assumed there would be others.

It turned out to be just the two of us, seated at a small oval table in the center of the Green Room. Two Navy stewards waited on us, only entering the room to serve food and drinks.

The President began by asking me whether I wanted to stay on as FBI Director, which I found strange because he had already told me twice in earlier conversations that he hoped I would stay, and I had assured him that I intended to. He said that lots of people wanted my job and, given the abuse I had taken during the previous year, he would understand if I wanted to walk away.

My instincts told me that the one-on-one setting, and the pretense that this was our first discussion about my position, meant the dinner was, at least in part, an effort to have me ask for my job and create some sort of patronage relationship. That concerned me greatly, given the FBI’s traditionally independent status in the executive branch.

I replied that I loved my work and intended to stay and serve out my ten-year term as Director. And then, because the set-up made me uneasy, I added that I was not “reliable” in the way politicians use that word, but he could always count on me to tell him the truth. I added that I was not on anybody’s side politically and could not be counted on in the traditional political sense, a stance I said was in his best interest as the President.

A few moments later, the President said, “I need loyalty, I expect loyalty.” I didn’t move, speak, or change my facial expression in any way during the awkward silence that followed. We simply looked at each other in silence. The conversation then moved on, but he returned to the subject near the end of our dinner.

At one point, I explained why it was so important that the FBI and the Department of Justice be independent of the White House. I said it was a paradox: Throughout history, some Presidents have decided that because “problems” come from Justice, they should try to hold the Department close. But blurring those boundaries ultimately makes the problems worse by undermining public trust in the institutions and their work.

Near the end of our dinner, the President returned to the subject of my job, saying he was very glad I wanted to stay, adding that he had heard great things about me from Jim Mattis, Jeff Sessions, and many others. He then said, “I need loyalty.” I replied, “You will always get honesty from me.” He paused and then said, “That’s what I want, honest loyalty.” I paused, and then said, “You will get that from me.” As I wrote in the memo I created immediately after the dinner, it is possible we understood the phrase “honest loyalty” differently, but I decided it wouldn’t be productive to push it further. The term – honest loyalty – had helped end a very awkward conversation and my explanations had made clear what he should expect.

During the dinner, the President returned to the salacious material I had briefed him about on January 6, and, as he had done previously, expressed his disgust for the allegations and strongly denied them. He said he was considering ordering me to investigate the alleged incident to prove it didn’t happen. I replied that he should give that careful thought because it might create a narrative that we were investigating him personally, which we weren’t, and because it was very difficult to prove a negative. He said he would think about it and asked me to think about it.

As was my practice for conversations with President Trump, I wrote a detailed memo about the dinner immediately afterwards and shared it with the senior leadership team of the FBI.

February 14 Oval Office Meeting

On February 14, I went to the Oval Office for a scheduled counterterrorism briefing of the President. He sat behind the desk and a group of us sat in a semi-circle of about six chairs facing him on the other side of the desk. The Vice President, Deputy Director of the CIA, Director of the National CounterTerrorism Center, Secretary of Homeland Security, the Attorney General, and I were in the semi-circle of chairs. I was directly facing the President, sitting between the Deputy CIA Director and the Director of NCTC. There were quite a few others in the room, sitting behind us on couches and chairs.

The President signaled the end of the briefing by thanking the group and telling them all that he wanted to speak to me alone. I stayed in my chair. As the participants started to leave the Oval Office, the Attorney General lingered by my chair, but the President thanked him and said he wanted to speak only with me. The last person to leave was Jared Kushner, who also stood by my chair and exchanged pleasantries with me. The President then excused him, saying he wanted to speak with me.

When the door by the grandfather clock closed, and we were alone, the President began by saying, “I want to talk about Mike Flynn.” Flynn had resigned the previous day. The President began by saying Flynn hadn’t done anything wrong in speaking with the Russians, but he had to let him go because he had misled the Vice President. He added that he had other concerns about Flynn, which he did not then specify.

The President then made a long series of comments about the problem with leaks of classified information – a concern I shared and still share. After he had spoken for a few minutes about leaks, Reince Priebus leaned in through the door by the grandfather clock and I could see a group of people waiting behind him. The President waved at him to close the door, saying he would be done shortly. The door closed.

The President then returned to the topic of Mike Flynn, saying, “He is a good guy and has been through a lot.” He repeated that Flynn hadn’t done anything wrong on his calls with the Russians, but had misled the Vice President. He then said, “I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go.” I replied only that “he is a good guy.” (In fact, I had a positive experience dealing with Mike Flynn when he was a colleague as Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency at the beginning of my term at FBI.) I did not say I would “let this go.”

The President returned briefly to the problem of leaks. I then got up and left out the door by the grandfather clock, making my way through the large group of people waiting there, including Mr. Priebus and the Vice President.

I immediately prepared an unclassified memo of the conversation about Flynn and discussed the matter with FBI senior leadership. I had understood the President to be requesting that we drop any investigation of Flynn in connection with false statements about his conversations with the Russian ambassador in December. I did not understand the President to be talking about the broader investigation into Russia or possible links to his campaign. I could be wrong, but I took him to be focusing on what had just happened with Flynn’s departure and the controversy around his account of his phone calls. Regardless, it was very concerning, given the FBI’s role as an independent investigative agency.

The FBI leadership team agreed with me that it was important not to infect the investigative team with the President’s request, which we did not intend to abide. We also concluded that, given that it was a one-on-one conversation, there was nothing available to corroborate my account. We concluded it made little sense to report it to Attorney General Sessions, who we expected would likely recuse himself from involvement in Russia-related investigations. (He did so two weeks later.) The Deputy Attorney General’s role was then filled in an acting capacity by a United States Attorney, who would also not be long in the role.

After discussing the matter, we decided to keep it very closely held, resolving to figure out what to do with it down the road as our investigation progressed. The investigation moved ahead at full speed, with none of the investigative team members – or the Department of Justice lawyers supporting them – aware of the President’s request.

Shortly afterwards, I spoke with Attorney General Sessions in person to pass along the President’s concerns about leaks. I took the opportunity to implore the Attorney General to prevent any future direct communication between the President and me. I told the AG that what had just happened – him being asked to leave while the FBI Director, who reports to the AG, remained behind – was inappropriate and should never happen. He did not reply. For the reasons discussed above, I did not mention that the President broached the FBI’s potential investigation of General Flynn.

March 30 Phone Call

On the morning of March 30, the President called me at the FBI. He described the Russia investigation as “a cloud” that was impairing his ability to act on behalf of the country. He said he had nothing to do with Russia, had not been involved with hookers in Russia, and had always assumed he was being recorded when in Russia. He asked what we could do to “lift the cloud.” I responded that we were investigating the matter as quickly as we could, and that there would be great benefit, if we didn’t find anything, to our having done the work well. He agreed, but then re-emphasized the problems this was causing him.

Then the President asked why there had been a congressional hearing about Russia the previous week – at which I had, as the Department of Justice directed, confirmed the investigation into possible coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign. I explained the demands from the leadership of both parties in Congress for more information, and that Senator Grassley had even held up the confirmation of the Deputy Attorney General until we briefed him in detail on the investigation. I explained that we had briefed the leadership of Congress on exactly which individuals we were investigating and that we had told those Congressional leaders that we were not personally investigating President Trump. I reminded him I had previously told him that. He repeatedly told me, “We need to get that fact out.” (I did not tell the President that the FBI and the Department of Justice had been reluctant to make public statements that we did not have an open case on President Trump for a number of reasons, most importantly because it would create a duty to correct, should that change.)

The President went on to say that if there were some “satellite” associates of his who did something wrong, it would be good to find that out, but that he hadn’t done anything wrong and hoped I would find a way to get it out that we weren’t investigating him.

In an abrupt shift, he turned the conversation to FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, saying he hadn’t brought up “the McCabe thing” because I had said McCabe was honorable, although McAuliffe was close to the Clintons and had given him (I think he meant Deputy Director McCabe’s wife) campaign money. Although I didn’t understand why the President was bringing this up, I repeated that Mr. McCabe was an honorable person.

He finished by stressing “the cloud” that was interfering with his ability to make deals for the country and said he hoped I could find a way to get out that he wasn’t being investigated. I told him I would see what we could do, and that we would do our investigative work well and as quickly as we could.

Immediately after that conversation, I called Acting Deputy Attorney General Dana Boente (AG Sessions had by then recused himself on all Russia-related matters), to report the substance of the call from the President, and said I would await his guidance. I did not hear back from him before the President called me again two weeks later.

April 11 Phone Call

On the morning of April 11, the President called me and asked what I had done about his request that I “get out” that he is not personally under investigation. I replied that I had passed his request to the Acting Deputy Attorney General, but I had not heard back. He replied that “the cloud” was getting in the way of his ability to do his job. He said that perhaps he would have his people reach out to the Acting Deputy Attorney General. I said that was the way his request should be handled. I said the White House Counsel should contact the leadership of DOJ to make the request, which was the traditional channel.

He said he would do that and added, “Because I have been very loyal to you, very loyal; we had that thing you know.” I did not reply or ask him what he meant by “that thing.” I said only that the way to handle it was to have the White House Counsel call the Acting Deputy Attorney General. He said that was what he would do and the call ended.

That was the last time I spoke with President Trump.

Comey’s Prepared remarks from Breitbart.

“Our moral duty to the taxpayer requires us to make our Government leaner and more accountable.” – President Donald J. Trump

This is ANOTHER proof of President Donald J. Trump’s commitment to cutting waste in government. 

“Our moral duty to the taxpayer requires us to make our Government leaner and more accountable.”
– President Donald J. Trump

Statement by the President on the Signing of H.R. 366

H.R. 366, the “DHS Stop Asset and Vehicle Excess Act,” would assign responsibility for achieving optimal vehicle fleet size in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to the Under Secretary for Management (the Under Secretary).  I am pleased to sign this bill and applaud this legislative effort to eliminate waste.  One provision of the bill, however, purports to require the Under Secretary to recommend budget rescissions to the Congress if the Under Secretary determines that DHS component heads have not taken adequate steps to achieve optimal vehicle fleet size in the previous fiscal year.  My Administration, including the Under Secretary, will respectfully treat the provision in a manner consistent with Article II, section 3 of the Constitution, which provides the President the exclusive authority to “recommend” to the Congress spending “Measures” in such amounts and for such purposes “as he shall judge necessary and expedient.”  My Administration, including the Under Secretary, looks forward to working with the Congress to identify and implement proposals to eliminate wasteful spending. 

DONALD J. TRUMP

THE WHITE HOUSE,
    June 6, 2017.

 

President Donald J. Trump Signs H.R. 366 into Law

On Tuesday, June 6, 2017, the President signed into law:

H.R. 366, the “DHS Stop Asset and Vehicle Excess Act or the DHS SAVE Act,” which requires the Under Secretary for Management of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to oversee and manage vehicle fleets throughout DHS; and imposes new requirements on DHS components regarding the management of those fleets.
 

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