Trump: Obama Was Outsmarted By Putin When Russia Annexed Crimea, "It Was Very Embarrassing To Him"

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President Trump holds a joint press conference with French President Emmanuel Macron at the G7 before he departed for the United States.

REPORTER: Thanks, Mr. President. Yamish with PBS News Hour. Why do you think it's appropriate to invite Russia to the G7 even that they've meddled in the 2016 election? And are you worried that if Russia does come to the G7 that it might hurt you politically because it's only going to be a couple of months before the 2020 election?



TRUMP: I don't care politically. I really don't. A little people a lot of people don't understand this. I ran one election and I won. It happened to be for president. I don't care politically. I'm going to run another election. I think I'm winning on polls that we see. Whether I win or not, I have to do the right thing. So I don't do things for political reasons. These are good, probably not, maybe it is. I mean, a lot of people are smart.

A lot of people say having Russia, which is a power--having them inside the room is better than having them outside the room. By the way there were numerous people during the G7 that felt that way and we didn't take a vote or anything but we did discuss it. My inclination is to say yes, they should be in. They were really it was say President Obama--I am not blaming him but a lot of bad things happened with President Putin and President Obama. One of the things that happened was as you know what happened with a very big area a very, very big and important area in the Middle East where the red line was drawn and then President Obama decided that he was not going to do anything about it.

You can draw red lines in the sand--you just can't do it and the other was in Ukraine having to do with a certain section of Ukraine that you know very well where it was sort of taken away from President Obama--not taken away from President Trump, taken away from President Obama. President Obama was not happy that this happened because it was embarrassing to him, right? It was very embarrassing to him and he wanted (INAUDIBLE) Russia to be out of the--what was called the G8 and that was his determination. He was outsmarted by Putin.

He was outsmarted. President Putin outsmarted President Obama. Wait a minute. And I can understand how President Obama would feel. He wasn't happy and (INAUDIBLE) for that reason. Now I am only thinking about the world and I am thinking about this country in terms of the G7, whether it is G7, GA. I think it would be better to have Russia inside the tent than outside the tent. Do we live--by the way, yes we live either way. Is it politically popular for me to say that? Possibly not.

I think a lot of people would agree with me frankly but possibly not. I do nothing for politics. I know a lot of you aren't--you are going to smile at that. I do nothing for politics. I do what is right and people like what I do and but I just do what is right. If I wanted to go strictly by politics I would probably pull that and possibly I would say gee, I don't want--I don't want Russia in but I really think it's good for security of the world, it is good for the economics of the world. Remember they are building a big pipeline in Europe going right up to Germany and I said to Angela who I had a great relationship with but I said you pay Russia billions of dollars and then we defend you from Russia. And I say how does that work?

QUESTION: (INAUDIBLE) misleading statement that Russia outsmarted President Obama--

TRUMP: Well, he did.

QUESTION: What other countries have said that the reason why Russia was kicked out was very clearly because they annexed Crimea. Why keep repeating what some people would see as a clear lie?

TRUMP: Well, it was annexed during president--I know you like President Obama but it was annexed during President Obama's term. If it was annexed during my term I would say sorry, folks. I made a mistake. Sorry folks. President Obama was helping the Ukraine. Crimea was annexed during his term. Now it's a very big area--a very important area. Russia has its submarine. That is where they do their submarine work and that is where they dock large and powerful submarines but not as powerful as ours and not as large as ours but they have their submarines and President Obama was pure and simply outsmarted. They took Crimea during his term. That was not a good thing. It could have been stopped, it could have been stopped with the right whatever, it could have been stopped but President Obama was unable to stop it and it's too bad. Go ahead.

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