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Sean Spicer Gives White House Press Briefing. Aired 2-2:30p ET

Aired March 21, 2017 - 14:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: -- freezing Obamacare's Medicaid expansion, while allowing for responsible -- a responsible unwinding.

[13:00:04]

So that people who enroll before 2020 will continue to be supported by the program, and providing a more generous reimbursement for elderly and disabled Medicare enrollees, recognizing that those populations have unique needs that must be taken care of.

After a return to the White House from the House -- speaking to the House Republican conference, the president received his daily intelligence briefing. Then the president signed S.442, the NASA Administration Transition Authorization Act of 2017, acting on another of the president's most ambitious promises to the American people.

Many may recall in his joint address, the president said quote, "American footprints on distant worlds are not too big of a dream", end quote. And with this bill, he is taking the latest step towards making that dream a reality by reiterating NASA's mission to ensure America remains a leader in space exploration.

This bipartisan bicameral legislation provides NASA with the full support it needs to fulfill this and many other important missions, including supporting NASA's plan to explore deep space and sending astronauts to Mars, including an endorsement of launching the Mars 2020 rover.

The rover will explore a site that is likely to have been habitable, seeking signs of past life and testing compelling samples and techniques for future robotic and eventual human exploration of Mars, reaffirming that NASA remains a fully multi-mission agency with a balanced set of core missions in space science, space technology, aeronautics, human space flight, exploration and education.

Endorsing NASA's continued progress towards launching the James Webb telescope, which will be a giant leap forward in our ever- evolving quest to understand the universe. And establishing an astronaut occupational healthcare program, something that NASA has considered a priority for years. After the bill signing, the vice president also announced that the president will be taking action shortly to relaunch the National Space Council, which the vice president will chair.

The president was honored to sign this new bill into law so that NASA continue -- can continue its work towards making America the world leader in space exploration once again.

Also, this morning, the president hosted -- the vice president rather hosted a breakfast meeting with Prime Minister al-Abadi of Iraq. We provided a readout on the president's meeting with the prime minister yesterday as well. And I believe there's been a readout of the vice president's as well.

At 3:00 p.m. this afternoon, the president will meet with members of Congress as -- who are part of the House Tuesday Group to discuss the American Healthcare Act. And this evening, the president will speak at the National Republican Congressional Committee March dinner.

Over on the Senate side of the Hill, the president's pick for the Supreme Cut -- Court, Judge Neil Gorsuch, has been doing a phenomenal job in the Senate today during his first day of questioning. The judge's eloquent testimony yesterday was why they praise from both sides of the aisle. And it's clear that everyone agrees from a broad spectrum that Judge Gorsuch is a very qualified person to serve on the Supreme Court.

As the judge noted today, quote, "A judge is there to make sure that every person, poor or rich, mighty or meek, gets equal protection under the law", end quote. His records show that he's lived up to this commitment throughout his entire career. And he's continuing to prove that he's exactly the type of jurist we need on the Supreme Court throughout the questioning that's started today.

Today is also National Agriculture Day for those who are keeping note. The world needs America's farmers and ranchers to lead, just as the world needs America to lead.

Global food demand is expected to increase by 50 to 97 percent by 2050. The world can't afford for America's farmers and ranchers to retreat. But the agriculture industry has met its share of challenges in recent years.

While our farmers are the most efficient in the world, margins have been tightening, regulations have been multiplying, and exports, which has historically counted for over one-fifth of U.S. farm production, have been declining due to unwise trade policies.

The president promised the many people in the agriculture industry and throughout rural America that he would not allow this to continue. And he will continue to pursue policy changes that will reverse this disturbing trend.

Quickly, in terms of follow-up from yesterday, I was asked about North Korea and I want to provide a quick update from the NSC. Quote, "The United States, in coordination with our allies, is exploring a new range of diplomatic, security and economic measures in response to the grave and escalating threat posed by North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programs", end quote.

And before I open it up for question, let me just run through a few scheduling updates. Tomorrow, the president will stop by the Women in Healthcare panel hosted by CMS administrator Seema Verma. There will also be a series of meetings with members of Congress tomorrow.

In the morning, the president will meet with members to discuss the American Healthcare Act. And in the afternoon, he will meet with Congressional members of the Congressional Black Caucus.

On Thursday, the president will have lunch with Secretary of Treasury Mnuchin before hosting a -- a meeting with truckers and representatives from trucking companies on healthcare that we discussed yesterday. In many states throughout the country, trucking happens to be one of the largest employers. And it's important to understand the impact of healthcare legislation on this important industry.

I'll have updates on the weekend schedule for you, hopefully tomorrow.

And, finally, yesterday, pursuant to the president's executive order on interior enforcement that he signed on January 25th, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency, ICE, released its first weekly detainee - detainer (ph) requests which our (ph) local law enforcement agencies have failed to comply with.

These examples were criminal illegals who have been arrested or convicted, in many cases, of serious and violence crimes, threaten public safety. In each instance local law enforcement is refusing to cooperate with ICE in its efforts to remove illegal immigrants who have committed a crime.

It is part of the president's continued efforts to keep our community safe.

A copy of this report is available on the ICE website that details all of the municipalities where there has been an issue and the crime that has been committed and the person - and - and not necessarily the persons name but the offense in which they were convicted for.

And, with that, be glad to take your questions - since we're talking Supreme Court John Roberts.

(LAUGHTER)

C'mon. That was good.

QUESTION: Not bad.

(LAUGHTER)

Unless there's an Alito in the audience.

On healthcare, the president cam away from Capitol Hill sounding pretty positive...

SPICER: Yeah.

QUESTION: ...about where he was going to go on Thursday but then, at the same time, Heritage Action (ph) came out and said it was going to encourage members to vote no, Club for Growth is taking out ads attacking this bill, Jim Jordan said, the president's great but it's still a bad bill.

This is going to a vote the day after tomorrow, what gives the president the sense of optimism that he can get this through and might he request more changes from Speaker Ryan before it goes to a vote?

SPICER: Well I think we've talked about this for days. There's been a lot of input from members of congress and I think that the meeting this morning really was a huge signs of support.

There was a lot of enthusiasm and optimism. Not just for the bill itself but for, something that, as I noted, conservatives and Republicans and a lot of Democrats, frankly, have been fighting for for awhile which is a more patient centric healthcare system.

I think the president's continued to engage with members, he will continue to do that all the way through Thursday but we, as I also noted, there were a lot of changes that were made by the speaker last night.

Additional legislation, the three prong approach that we've talked about in the past, has been put forward to actually make sure the members understood the comprehensive nature of this.

This is one vehicle. There's a huge administrative piece that Secretary Price will administer through administrative action that was given to him when they passed this bill and gave that authority to Kathleen Sebelius, then the Secretary of Health and Human Services, to implement pieces that they couldn't get done legislatively.

We can now unwind a lot of that and add a lot of consumer based and - and competition measures through the administrate (ph) - but then the third prong, all the other stuff we've talked about for years as Republicans, buying across state lines, expanding health savings accounts, etcetera, etcetera.

All of that has now been introduced as well and I think that he continues to meet with members and walk away with a very, very optimistic view of where the bill is headed.

I think a lot of the measures that have been changed and tweaked and updated have assuaged members who had concerns or wanted to see some additional tightening. But keep in mind if you are a conservative who has been fighting for repeal and replace, this is your chance. If you are a conservative who has been looking to address out of control entitlement spending this is the first attempt - this is the first reform of an entitlement program, in terms of Medicaid, in 30 years.

These - these are a truly conservative set of principles that we are fighting for. The competition that's in the bill the - the ability to allow prices to come down and choice to go up, there is nothing more conservative that is in this bill.

And I think as members continue to talk about ideas that have been included in this bill and the principles of it, we feel very good going into the final stretch.

QUESTION: But may he seek more changes in order to further assuage some (inaudible)?

(CROSSTALK)

SPICER: It's possible but I think that we've made some very positive steps forward so I don't want to rule anything out but I will say that I feel very good about this, where it stands now.

And I think the more and more that members meet with the president the more they - they understand how important this is to the overall agenda that we're seeking to pass.

And I think if we can - as the president noted this morning to members, if you can repeal Obamacare, replace it with a healthcare system that does what conservatives and independent and, frankly, some Democrats have talked about it for years - that does exactly that kind of thing, instill choice, drive down costs, allows people to actually get care that they've been promised and then get onto things like tax reform, we will have a - an amazing first year in office. And I think the president reminded them this is the first step in an amazing agenda that he set forth and that we can work together on.

QUESTION: Thanks, Sean.

Members of this administration have talked about the stock market as a real-time barometer for how the administration is performing. This afternoon, though, the stock market has been off as much as 200 points on the Dow. Some commentators on Wall Street are suggesting that's because traders are starting to sense a lack of progress in the Trump legislative agenda; worried that he might not be able to accomplish everything he set out to do.

Does the president believe that today's dip in the Dow is a result of his performance as president of the United States?

SPICER: Well, I think to look at any one day is -- is nothing that we've ever -- we've always cautioned. I think overall it still continues to be up tremendously. And I think when you look at not just that one indicator -- I think if you want to get -- I mean, you probably know better than anybody in terms of what you guys cover, that you can't look at one indices and say that that is the benchmark of an entire economy.

But you see confidence levels both in small business and in other surveys that show that there is continued confidence in the market and optimism in the market. You see manufacturers coming back to America, talking about investment. Major CEOs and small businesses trying to grow the economy and talk about job creation.

Those are the real indicators. And again, I think the numbers that we saw last month, again, one month isn't -- isn't -- make a record, but I think that it was very promising not just because of what the number was, but what it had been forecast to be. Right? So it was expected to be 200,000; came in at 235,000.

So again, when you're over-performing, I think that shows a sign of -- of optimism and confidence in the market. I think, again, I just want to make sure that we're clear before we go into, you know, as we continue through the month, one report does not make something to base an entire record off of. But I think that we feel very good about where things are headed and the direction things are going, not just in terms of the indices and the ups and downs of the market, but also in terms of the number of manufacturers that are walking in and restating their commitment to grow jobs, expand, et cetera, in the market.

QUESTION: (inaudible) confidence that President Trump will be able to get a tax cut done this year that will be in place for next year (inaudible)?

(CROSSTALK)

SPICER: Yeah, and look, I think we -- we're well on our way to seeing this agenda done (inaudible) about the budget, which I think reaffirmed his commitment to fiscal austerity and to the priorities he set out of defending this country, making the -- the increases in national defense and homeland security that he promised; prioritizing other things in the budget. We've got Obamacare done; on immigration, executive order-wise./

And I think that when you're doing big things -- Obamacare, tax reform -- I mean, the healthcare system has affected (ph) the economy. That's no small feat. And I think in terms of what you've seen so far -- going through three -- three committees, moving along and the Senate ready to take it up; his pick of Neil Gorsuch. The agenda is moving along at a very brisk pace in terms of what his priorities were and where I think we're headed.

QUESTION: Sean, last month (inaudible) about the consideration potentially of a carbon tax, which I guess was discussed in the meeting at the White House. We're hearing some reports that there's a pretty lively internal debate. Gary Cohn might be someone who's more prone to that.

Can you just discuss -- is the president considering a carbon tax? And what are sort of the various opinions that are going on in the White House (inaudible)? SPICER: I think there's a robust debate going on with respect to comprehensive tax reform. And as we've mentioned, I mean, our goal right now is to get through Thursday. And that's what the president has talked about very publicly. We need to get Obamacare repealed and replaced and move on to tax reform and some of the other trade reviews that we've talked about, immigration.

There's a lot of things on the agenda. But I'm not going to comment on specific prongs of that. I will just tell you that obviously there's a lot of people who recognize that we haven't had comprehensive tax reform since 1986, and that there's a lot of pieces in this that we need to examine and get to. And there's a lot of voices and opinions that get shared with him.

And so -- so I'm not in a position where I'm going to get into commenting piecemeal where it is, but I will say that's even more reason that we -- let's get past Thursday. You know, when you look at the week ahead real quick, you -- in terms of this -- the repeal and replace aspect and Gorsuch -- I think from the legislative impact, going back to Amy's (ph) question, I think it's pretty -- pretty big week for the White House to seeing all this done.

Hunter?

QUESTION: Thank you, Sean.

President Trump has previously indicated that he wanted to appoint pro-life judges who would be willing to overturn Roe vs. Wade. Yet in his testimony today, Judge Gorsuch said he would have walked out the door if President Trump asked if he had this position. Is President Trump still confident that Judge Gorsuch would be willing to overturn Roe vs. Wade? And is this position still important to him?

SPICER: I think the president's comments speak for themselves. I think the president's list that he's put out on 20 (ph) are jurists that both the Federalist Society and Heritage have deemed to be people who interpret the constitution as originalists, as people who aren't looking to legislate from the bench and I'm not going to take the bait, during a live hearing, to comment on that.

But I appreciate the effort. Veronica (ph).

QUESTION: Thank you Sean. I have two questions on the same story. Recently a 14 year old girl, she was raped in the boys bathroom of her high school, a 17 and 18 year old boy have been charged. One of the boys we know unlawfully entered the country, both of them have outstanding orders with ICE.

So here's my first question about it. Currently, schools are prohibited from denying access to public education based on immigration status, does the president hear a story like that and think that it should change or be addressed in a future executive order?

SPICER: I think -- first, let me just say that this is a tragic event and it's horrendous and horrible and disgusting, what this young woman in Rockville went through. I can't possibly imagine.

So, first of all, let's remember the human side of this that this is a tragic event that no child, no person, no parent should ever have to deal with.

School should be a place where a parent puts their child on a bus or drops them off or sees them off and knows that they're safe.

And the idea that this occurred is shocking, disturbing, horrific and whatever other words that come to mind -- that someone can think of because this is not -- school should be a safe place where children are there to learn and to feel safe, in that kind of an environment.

And to know that this happened in the circumstances -- this young woman, in particular, fought to come to this country legally because of the freedoms and the treasures of this nation and to think that this kind of tragedy would occur to someone who's personally endured that kind of struggle to come to this nation and then face this is reprehensible.

And it is not who we are as a country. I think it is troubling and I think, further to your question, the president recognizes that education is a state run and a local run issue but I think it is -- it is cause for concern, what happened there.

And I think that the city should look at its policies and I think that this is something that authorities are going to have to look at.

I think, from an immigration standpoint, clearly, to see somebody -- there's so many facets of this case that deserve question. Why was there -- I think he was 17 or 18 years old -- 18 thank you. And how does that person get put into the 9th grade?

Why was -- I mean there is so many issues that come up in this case. I will leave it to authorities to get through but I think that we are in the early stages of this and there's a lot that needs to get addressed with respect to this case in particular.

QUESTION: So I hear you about it being a state issue. Let's talk about something though that president has implemented and introduced VOICE, Victims of Immigration Crime Enforcement, is that enough...

SPICER: No.

QUESTION: ...to support a 14 (ph) year (ph) old (ph) -

SPICER: No -- no -- no it's one piece. The president understands that victims need a voice, which is why he brought it in there (ph), to help them when they're specifically targeted or victims of a crime by people who are here illegally.

But I think part of the reason the president has made illegal immigration and crackdown such a big deal is because of tragedies like this.

We act, so many times when we talk about this and say, you know, is the president going, how's the president, why is the president dealing with this because of this priority.

Well, part of the reason is because of the tragedy that this young girl dealt with -- had inflicted upon her, whatever the word is.

But this is -- this is why he's passionate about this because people are victims of these crimes in terms of them they're victims of the economic pieces (ph), there's a national security impact (ph).

But immigration pays its toll on our people if it's done -- if it's not done legally. And this is another example and it's why the president is so passionate about this.

But he recognizes that it's multi-faceted, why we have to be tough at the border, why I just read off that -- that this executive who's (ph) dealing with people who've committed crimes who local enforcement agencies or (ph) municipalities or at the state level are not dealing with it. And if you go to the -- the ICE website and download this, you'll see it's over 30 something pages of cases where there's a person that is convicted of a crime that local people -- local municipal law enforcement for whatever reason -- and, in some cases, they're prohibited.

But for one reason or another are not enforcing the law, not turning that individual over to federal authorities to be -- to be deported.

And I think this is another example of why this issue needs to be addressed. John (ph).

QUESTION: Sean, is the president going to hold Republican who vote against healthcare accountable (ph)? Are they going to pay a price if they vote against this bill?

SPICER: I think they'll probably pay a price at home. Meaning, I think, that you can't go promise over and over again, since 2010 in the case that the member's been there that long, but at least for those who have been there that long, and at least -- and even the new ones, this was a major component of the last election.

And I think there is probably not a single Republican member in (inaudible) who went out and talked about this. And I think when you realize the components of this bill and that the president worked with the House and the Senate to put something together that achieved a promise that was made to voters, yeah, I think there's going to be a price to be paid. But it's going to be with their own voters, and they're going to have to go back and explain to them why they made a commitment to them, and then didn't follow through.

And one of the things that's interesting is that people who agree or don't agree with the president in terms of his legislative agenda at least give him high marks, regardless of whether or not they subscribe to his agenda, for keeping his word and his promises. And I think that's one of the things that he's made very clear this morning. We pledged to the American people at the congressional level, at the Senate level, at the federal -- at the presidential level to go do something.

And this bill, while probably not everybody got everything they wanted, does exactly what we said. It's repealing it and replacing it with all of the principles and the aspects that we discussed throughout not only last cycle, but in a lot of these cases back to 2010.

Margaret?

QUESTION: Will he campaign against Republicans...

(CROSSTALK)

SPICER: I -- let's get through the vote. I think one of the things that he made clear this morning was that he was going to make sure that the people who did support this, he would be out there supporting them. And so I'm not going to focus on the negative as much as the positive today. And he made it clear to members that for those of you who go out there and keep your word and support it, we're going to make sure that we remember those who stood by us and who stood by the word that they gave to their voters. Margaret?

QUESTION: Thanks.

OK. So I was actually (inaudible) what I was going to ask, but let me try (inaudible). I've got another one (inaudible).

So my other one -- my other one that I'm going to go back to that, is on the laptop restrictions...

SPICER: Yes?

QUESTION: ... by the U.S. and now the U.K. It certainly sounds like that may have been in response to some kind of specific security threat. What can you talk about from the podium in as much specificity as you can? And if you can't do specifics, at least help us to understand. Are there multiple threats? Is there one threat? What (inaudible) conflict? What is going on?

SPICER: Yeah. So, yesterday the TSA announced new enhanced measures on flights in-bound to the United States from 10 of more than the 250 countries that have flights coming into the United States, that serve as the last point of departure. I think even the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, Adam Schiff, who we've not always shared the same point of view with, even agreed by saying, quote, "these steps are both necessary and proportional to the threat."

Elevated intelligence that we're aware of indicates that terrorist groups continue to target commercial aviation, and are aggressive in pursuing innovative methods to undertake their attacks, to include smuggling of explosive devices in various consumer objects.

Based on this information, the secretary of homeland security and the TSA administrator have determined that it's necessary to enhance security procedures for passengers at certain last point of departure airports. That being said, I'm not going to go any further than that. I would refer any further comment to the TSA.

QUESTION: (inaudible) Mark Meadows (inaudible) and the president seemed like he was kind of joking, but has the president decided in his own mind yet whether he thinks it would be appropriate potentially to mount (inaudible) primary opposition, to campaign for primary opposition in Republican congressional primaries for the mid-terms?

SPICER: Mark Meadows is a long-time, early-supporter of the president. He had some fun at his expense this morning during the conference meeting. And I think he continued to express hope that Congressman Meadows, who is head of the Freedom Caucus, would continue to see the efforts that have been made to make this better, more -- and address a lot of the concerns out there.

But he has made it very clear that he was -- he was having fun with him. The president is committed to making sure that this gets passed. We'll go from there. Vivian?

QUESTION: Thanks, Sean.

First a followup to Margaret's question. Why wait for the new aviation regulations (inaudible) 96 hours to implement? I mean, isn't the president's mantra on counterterrorism that we have to, you know, kind of sneak up on our enemies, not let them know our tactics?

SPICER: So, I'm going to ultimately refer you back to TSA. But I will tell you that remember that these are 10 airports of last point of departure to the United States out of 250 that come here. Part of it is to allow -- you have to provide appropriate notification to the host country, to the host airlines, and give them opportunity to get those procedures in place.

I'm not going to comment any further about the security measures that have been or -- have been taking place or are taking place; just to continue to refer you back to TSA. But I will tell you that I think that implementing something of this nature in that timeframe is pretty darn quick.

QUESTION: OK. And one more, sorry.

SPICER: Of course.

QUESTION: I had a follow-up. Sorry. Something totally unrelated.

I wanted to ask, has the White House council approved Ivanka Trump getting a West Wing office and clearance. And if so, what does the administration thinking behind this? What is she going (OFF-MIKE)...

(CROSSTALK)

SPICER: I don't -- I don't think the council actually approves office space. But I get your question.

QUESTION: Right.

SPICER: Ivanka has taken on several measures to promote high standards of ethical conduct. Even though she's not a federal employee, she'll follow the restrictions that would apply if she were.

She's taking these steps with the advice of counsel and in consultation with the Office of Government Ethics. Allie?

QUESTION: Sean, two quick ones for you. One on healthcare to follow up on the follow-ups.

You made very clear that the president was going to be supporting those who supported the bill.

SPICER: Right.

QUESTION: And I don't want to talk about the flip side of the...

(CROSSTALK)

SPICER: Yeah.

QUESTION: But when he talked this morning in the closed-door meeting about people paying a price, losing seats...

SPICER: Right.

QUESTION: ...not getting majority, is that an implied threat from the president to these members who don't pass this bill?

SPICER: No, I think it's a political reality. I think if you go out and promise the American people something and your voters something, especially on a scale like this -- and frankly, as I said, I mean I'm not -- there's obviously members that've been there one term, two terms, three terms.

But this is something that as a party we've made very clear. If you give us this, American people, we will get this done. And I think that to go and make a promise of -- and a pledge of this magnitude and not to follow it through, I -- I'm sure that voters would be upset.

And we've seen this in the past. I think -- and it -- it's something that -- that I think the president, as I mentioned earlier, has staked -- you know, has -- has earned high marks for is keeping his word.

And I think the president was stating a political reality. If we go out there and make these pledges to the American people and don't do what we said we've done on these big things, then I don't think they're gonna continue to want to see us in the majority and they're gonna look for an alternative.

QUESTION: And to the second -- well, just to follow up (ph)...

SPICER: Yeah?

QUESTION: ...will he -- will you remember the names of those who don't back the bills?

(LAUGHTER)

SPICER: We'll see. John Gizzi?

QUESTION: Well, actually, I do have...

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: Particularly on yesterday, I just want to...

(CROSSTALK

SPICER: I love your counting. It's like CBO.

(LAUGHTER)

Sorry, you've got (ph) -- come on, that was... QUESTION: Care to elaborate on that?

SPICER: No, I don't. Go ahead.

QUESTION: I do want to ask about the Russia testimony congressionary (ph). I know you obviously addressed it from the podium...

SPICER: Yeah.

QUESTION: ...24 hours ago. But there was sort of this -- this interesting moment that happened a little bit after the briefing where Director Comey was asked about sort of (ph) live tweets coming from the president and his account at the same time that the hearing was happening.

And Director Comey was fact checking the president in real time, essentially saying he was incorrect in what he was tweeting. Is there concern on the part of the White House about the president's credibility in that situation that his own director is correcting his tweets and what he's saying in real time (inaudible)?

SPICER: Well, I mean, let's just be clear. I mean, he was answering questions. I mean, it's not like he was out there.

He was -- he was responding to a question. But I -- again, I just -- I think it's important to note with respect to this that the -- you know, and I -- I saw a couple comments yesterday.

Senator Coons took issue with a couple of the comments that we made. Let me just read to you -- I know you guys love this when I do this. So, I'm just gonna entertain you for a second.

Senator Coons, this is his quote -- direct quote. Quote, "I have no hard evidence of collusion", end quote. Director Clapper, quote, "Not to my knowledge", end quote. Senator Tom Cotton, quote, "Not that I've seen and not that I'm aware of."

This is in reference to any type of collusion with Russia that occurred. Obama's CIA director -- acting CIA director Morrell, quote, "There's smoke but there's no fire." Senator Chuck Grassley, after the Comey briefing doc (ph) I can say @POTUS and @Clapper are both right. No evidence of Trump collusion with -- so, you know, we -- we -- we've -- we've now gone over this on multiple occasions.

But at some point, there's a distinction between an investigation that it goes into Russia's involvement in 2016 and this continued narrative that falsely tries to link the Trump -- the president or the White House into any of it. They continue to see that there is nothing there.

Every single person who has been briefed, who has come out and publicly talked about it -- Republican, Democrat, former DNI, former CIA directors, Obama appointees -- have said no evidence. And so, I -- I get that it -- we keep getting asked...

QUESTION: I want (ph) my question... (CROSSTALK)

SPICER: But (inaudible) my point is that that was one of the tweets, though, that he -- that he addressed. As I said, you know, former DNI continues to know. And that was actually true.

These are their quotes. This is what they've said. SO, it's not a question -- I think sometimes you come back to us.

At some point, the question has to be to the individuals who have said to whether it's Chris Coons from Delaware or former director Clapper or former CIA acting director Morrell. They're the ones who've said these things on the record. They're the ones who have been briefed by the intelligence community, by the FBI and come out and said there is no collusion.

And so, at some point to -- to fact check the president for merely quoting them is -- is not -- it -- the -- the question should be directed at them, not us. But over and over again, it's come to the same conclusion.

So, Kaitlyn (ph)?

(CROSSTALK)

SPICER: All right, John then Kaitlyn. That was very nice of you. It's National Ag Day afterwards.

(CROSSTALK)

[14:30:00]

QUESTION: Thank you, Sean. Thank you, Kaitlyn.

I have two questions.