Before he became president, Donald Trump regularly called into “Fox & Friends” on the Fox News Channel to opine on the day’s news. But since he has become president, he’s abandoned his call-in habit. That is until Thursday, when he telephoned the show and sounded off for nearly 30 minutes.
So, how did it go?
Well, as show cohost Steve Doocy said after Trump got off the phone, “I think he was awake and had a lot to say!”
Indeed, he did have a lot to say. The interview began with what he got the first lady for her birthday and then meandered from James Comey to Kanye West.
In case you missed it, here are the six key moments from the interview:
So about Melania’s birthday
All he got his wife, Melania, for her birthday was “a beautiful card” and flowers because, you know, he is busy.
Trump said that for his wife’s birthday Thursday, “Maybe I didn’t get her so much. I got her a beautiful card.” Trump later explained that he did give her flowers, but no additional gifts because he’s very busy being president.
A long-awaited Cohen, Daniels acknowledgment
In a first, Trump said that Michael Cohen represented him on “this crazy Stormy Daniels thing.”
Ever since the news of Trump’s alleged one-night stand with the porn actress — and the $130,000 in hush money that followed — became national news, Trump has been uncharacteristically silent on the topic. The big question had become whether the president knew that his fixer, Michael Cohen, arranged the hush money and whether he planned to reimburse him.
Until Thursday’s interview, Trump had never admitted that he knew anything about it. The one time he did comment on the matter, briefly on Air Force One, he implied that it was something Cohen chose to do entirely on his own.
But now he says Cohen did in fact do some legal work for him, namely: “Like with this crazy Stormy Daniels thing, he represented me.”
That statement is significant in that it will probably lead to the attorney for Daniels to call for Trump to testify in a court proceeding.
“Thank you @foxandfriends for having Mr. Trump on this morning to discuss Michael Cohen and our case. Very informative,” Michael Avenatti, Daniels’s attorney, tweeted after the show.
The sitting president of the United States talked about Kanye West and Shania Twain and was completely serious about it
“Mr. President, we want to get to Kanye West,” one of the show’s anchors said like it was a completely normal thing to discuss with a US president.
The day before, West, a rapper, showed off how Trump autographed a “Make America Great Again” hat for him and then wrote on Twitter: “You don’t have to agree with Trump but the mob can’t make me not love him. We are both dragon energy. He is my brother.”
Trump then tweeted back his thanks.
On Fox News Thursday morning, Trump said the reason why Kanye likes him is because unemployment for African-Americans is so low. He did not elaborate, nor did he mention that the decline has slowed since Trump took office.
“He sees that stuff and he’s smart,” Trump explained. “He says, you know what? Trump is doing a much better job than the Democrats did.”
The president then talked about how earlier in the week Canadian country singer Shania Twain said she would have voted for Trump had she been registered in the United States. She later apologized, but subsequently said it was a mistake for her to have done so.
And let’s not forget the requisite Comey mention
Per usual, Trump had a lot to say about Comey, including the fact that he was glad he fired him as the FBI director a year ago.
The one thing he said about Comey that was new Thursday is that Trump directly questioned a specific allegation Comey made. Comey has said he recalled Trump telling him that he never spent the night in Russia, where the Miss Universe contest he was hosting was held. Comey said Trump made this point to counter an unproven allegation he met with prostitutes in a hotel room there. But in Thursday’s interview, Trump said of course he spent the night and that he never would have told Comey he did otherwise.
Trump, who loves to talk about his Electoral College win, said he would prefer to scrap the Electoral College
A year and half after he won the 2016 presidential election, Trump is still talking about his Electoral College win. Democrats routinely point out that while he won the Electoral College, he still lost the popular vote. Trump tends to ignore that. But on Thursday, the president, in a stream-of-consciousness explanation, said he campaigned with the Electoral College in mind, not the popular vote.
Then he went further, questioning whether the Electoral College is the best method for electing a president.
“The Electoral College is different. I would rather have the popular vote because it’s, to me, it’s much easier to win the popular vote,” Trump said.
Got all that?