Trump and The Wall Street Journal Release Conflicting Transcripts of Controversial Interview

donald_trump_president-elect_portrait_croppeddownload-4President Donald Trump and the Wall Street Journal are in an open conflict over what was said in a meeting between the President and editors.  It was reported to the shock (and ridicule) of many that Trump said that he has a great relationship with Kim Jong Un of North Korea. The White House went public and said that the President clearly said the “I’d have a very good relationship” and not “I have a very good relationship” with the dictator.  The White House disputed that President Donald Trump told The Wall Street Journal in an interview Thursday that “I probably have a very good relationship with Kim Jong Un of North Korea,” saying that Mr. Trump had instead said “I’d probably have a very good relationship” with the North Korean leader. Notably, this was not a denial based on “misspeaking” but a direct denial.  Trump then pushed it further with a tweet.    Unlike the controversy over the denied use of the word “shithole” in the Oval Office (where Trump said he might have to start recording such meetings), he did record this interview.  Now the Wall Street Journal has released the tape and it sounds like the editors were correctly recounting the President’s words (though it is close). I have now listened repeatedly and initially supported the WSJ, but now I am not quite as confident.  Trump’s position seems more consistent with the context and he might have swallowed the “did” a bit in “I’d.” The recording is below.

 It is rare to see such a conflict between a Republican president and the conservative editors of the Wall Street Journal.
After the President’s denial, The Journal decided to release the relevant portion of the audio which was meant to be used for transcription purposes.  The company transcribing the interview also agreed that the President said that he had a good relationship with Kim Jong Un.
Nevertheless, Trump tweeted Sunday morning, “The Wall Street Journal stated falsely that I said to them “I have a good relationship with Kim Jong Un” (of N. Korea). Obviously I didn’t say that. I said “I’d have a good relationship with Kim Jong Un,” a big difference. Fortunately we now record conversations with reporters…and they knew exactly what I said and meant. They just wanted a story. FAKE NEWS!”

You can listen for yourself: Here.

I am surprised that the White House did not simply say that the President meant “I’d have” but instead has gone “all in” on another complete denial.  The use of “I’d” would be more consistent with the context of the remarks. It seems to be what he meant as opposed to how he said it.

You be the judge.  Who is telling the truth on the issue?

192 thoughts on “Trump and The Wall Street Journal Release Conflicting Transcripts of Controversial Interview

  1. Jane Mayer who wrote Dark Money described Richard Fink as the central nervous system of the Kochopus.
    The oligarchy’s implementation of policy change is supported by a document, “Structure of Social Change”,
    which is linked at UnKochMyCampus.org. The scheme is achieved through “targeted funding of universities, think tanks, and political groups”.

  2. Joni Ernst, a Republican from Iowa, in an attempt to defend Trump at her “Coffee with Joni”, offered Norway, un-ironically, as an example of a country that Trump stands with. Norway viewsTrump the way the rest of Europe views him, as a painful joke.
    Joni’s constituents enjoyed a laugh at her expense. The Koch’s launched Joni, no surprise there.

    • Barack Obama was “launched” in a terrorist’s living room. As for Norway, you are aware it isn’t an ****hole, right? When are you going to define the ochlocracy you advocate?

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