Immediately following that brief announcement, the U.S. president let loose on a wide-range of subjects.
First, a progress report.
“We have made incredible progress. I don’t think there’s ever been a president elected who in this short period of time has done what we’ve done.”
“The stock market has hit record numbers, as you know, and there has been a tremendous surge of optimism in the business world.
“Plants and factories are already starting to move back into the United States — big league — Ford, General Motors.”
He unleashed on the “dishonest” press.
“The press has become so dishonest that if we don’t talk about it, we are doing a tremendous disservice to the American people. Tremendous disservice.
“The level of dishonesty is out of control.”
WATCH: President Trump says ‘tone’ is his biggest issue with news media
“Some of the media’s fantastic, I have to say, honest and fantastic — but much of it is not. The distortion, and we’ll talk about it, you’ll be able to ask me questions about it. But we’re not going to let it happen because I’m here, again, to take my message straight to the people.”
Trump wanted to make one thing clear: he’s been cleaning up Obama’s “mess.”
“To be honest, I inherited a mess. A mess. At home and abroad, a mess. Jobs are pouring out of the country. You see what’s going on with all of the companies leaving our country, going to Mexico and other places. Low pay, low wages.
“Mass instability overseas, no matter where you look. The Middle East, a disaster. North Korea, we’ll take care of it, folks. We’re going to take care of it all. I just want to let you know. I inherited a mess.”
Canada got a shout out.
“We have had great conversations with the United Kingdom and meetings, Israel, Mexico, Japan, China and Canada. Really, really productive conversations. I would say far more productive than you would understand. We’ve even developed a new council with Canada to promote women’s business leaders and entrepreneurs. Very important to me, very important to my daughter, Ivanka.”
ISIS is going down.
“I have directed our defence community headed by our great general, now Secretary Mattis, he’s over there now working very hard to submit a plan for the defeat of ISIS, a group that celebrates murder and torture of innocent people in large sections of the world. Used to be a small group. Now it’s in large sections of the world. They’ve spread like cancer.
“ISIS has spread like cancer.”
So is Iran.
“We have imposed new sanctions on the nation of Iran, who has totally taken advantage of our previous administration. And they’re the world’s top sponsor of terrorism. And we’re not going to stop until that problem is properly solved, and it’s not properly solved now. It’s one of the worst agreements I’ve ever seen drawn by anybody. I’ve ordered plans to begin for the massive rebuilding of the United States military.”
Trade deals will be overhauled.
“We have withdrawn from the job killing disaster known as Trans-Pacific Partnership. We’re going to have trade deals but we’re going to have one-on-one deals, bilateral. We’re going to have one-on-one deals.”
Walls will be built.
“We’re becoming a drug-infested nation. Drugs are becoming cheaper than candy bars. We’re not going to let it happen any longer.
“We’ve undertaken the most substantial border security measures in a generation to keep our nation and our tax dollars safe and are now in the process of beginning to build a promised wall on the southern border.”
WATCH: Trump calls reports on administration’s ties to Russia ‘fake news’
Hillary Clinton gave Russia uranium.
“Now tomorrow, you’ll say ‘Donald Trump wants to get along with Russia, this is terrible.’ It’s not terrible. It’s good. We had Hillary Clinton try and do a reset. We had Hillary Clinton give Russia 20 per cent of the uranium in our country. You know what uranium is, right? This thing called nuclear weapons like lots of things are done with uranium including some bad things.
“Nobody talks about that. I didn’t do anything for Russia. I’ve done nothing for Russia. Hillary Clinton gave them 20 per cent of our uranium. Hillary Clinton did a reset, remember? With the stupid plastic button that made us all look like a bunch of jerks. Here, take a look. He looked at her like, ‘what the hell is she doing with that cheap plastic button?’”
Russia will understand his strength.
“The greatest thing I could do is shoot that ship that’s 30 miles off-shore right out of the water.
Everyone in this country’s going to say ‘oh, it’s so great.’ That’s not great. That’s not great. I would love to be able to get along with Russia. Now, you’ve had a lot of presidents that haven’t taken that tack. Look where we are now.”
WATCH: Trump: The greatest thing I could do would be to sink the Russian ship off U.S. East Coast
The leaks are real, the news is fake.
REPORTER QUESTION: “I just want to get you to clarify this very important point. Can you say definitively that nobody on your campaign had any contacts with the Russians during the campaign? And on the leaks, is it fake news or are these real leaks?”
TRUMP: “Well the leaks are real. You’re the one that wrote about them and reported them, I mean the leaks are real. You know what they said, you saw it and the leaks are absolutely real. The news is fake because so much of the news is fake.”
WATCH: President Trump: The leaks are real, the news is fake