[The full interview released had 11.8 seconds edited out at 16 minutes, 54 seconds. The transcript and video associated with this transcript restore that segment] President Trump, thank you for being with us. Thank you very much Catherine. Did the Attorney General make the right call refusing to go to the House Judiciary Committee because he'd take questions from committee staff lawyers? Well, I think so it's not up to me. It's up to him, and they were going to treat him differently than they've treated other people and, of course, we've been treated differently to start off with. We've gone through, so many investigations, everybody and it's so ridiculous. No obstruction. No nothing, There's been no nothing. There's been no collusion. There never was. They knew that from day one. Let me ask you... He should be -- he should be treated the same way as other people are treated, and they're not doing that. So he's not being treated fairly? Is that what you saw yesterday in the Senate? Not -- no, not when they want to bring in people -- outside people -- to interview him or other people on staff to interview him. No, I mean, they're politicians They're supposed to be good at doing it, and, I don't know. I thought -- I thought he was fantastic yesterday. He was very truthful, very straight up, a very solid person. Great person, and I think that -- no they're not treating him fairly. I want you to respond to some comments from the chairman of that committee, Jerry Nadler. He likened you to a quote dictator today, and he's threatened to hold the Attorney General in contempt. Well, look, I have been probably a person, that's given more to a so-called investigation than anybody ever in the history of this country. 1.4 million pages or documents, hundreds of people have been interviewed. I've allowed lawyers to be interviewed. I didn't have to do any of it. I could have used presidential privilege. But I've been the most transparent president in history. I don't think anybody has been as open as I have. And you know the reason I was? Because I didn't do anything wrong. I didn't do anything with Russia. So I said give me all the documents you want, give him all the people you want. Somebody told me there was 500 people that were interviewed. I could have stopped all of it. I didn't do that, and now we win with Mueller, where they come up very strongly with no collusion and no obstruction. No nothing. We win very strongly, and now they want to do it all over again? Now, we won in the house. We won in the Senate because Senator Burr said there's been no collusion. But we went through that. We won here -- I mean, the Muller report was a total win. But think of it. We go through this. This is two and a half years now I've been going through the same thing, and the guilt is on the other side, it's not on our side. So are you -- The guilt is on the other side. So are you saying the House committee should be satisfied with the findings in the Mueller report and they should not do independent oversight? Well, I think they should be satisfied with the findings. They spent 35 million -- now somebody told me today, maybe $40 million on the Mueller Report. They had 18 people, most of whom, I think, all of whom disliked Donald Trump. They were Democrats, they contributed to the campaign of Hillary Clinton, they had conflicts all over the place, and it still came out no collusion. I can't imagine they can keep doing this. This is done just to try and bring me down to -- and I had my highest poll numbers today, which is -- you have to explain that to me, because, with all that, we do, I had my best poll numbers so with -- with -- yeah, I think they're treating us very unfairly, I think it's time to get down to business. I want to do infrastructure. I want to do prescription drug pricing -- low. I want to do all the other things that we want to do. Nobody's done more -- it's an incredible thing Catherine. Nobody's done more than President Trump and this administration in 2 1/2 years, ever, in their first 2 1/2 years, and despite that, I'm wasting time with all of this stuff. It is very unfair, and I think they're treating our Attorney General, who is a highly respected man, very unfairly. Would you be comfortable if your Attorney General was held in contempt? Well, I'd have to ask him. I really don't know. As far as I'm concerned, I don't know how you could do a thing like that. Again, we've been the most transparent in the history of this country. There's never been a President that has allowed them to take every document. I didn't have to give -- you know the law better than anybody. I watch you all the time. I think you're terrific. You know -- I've never been to law school, just so you know. [Laughs] Well, that's good. But you know the law better than the lawyers, that I can say. But I don't have to give -- I didn't have to give all of this documentation, probably in the end I would have had to give none. I didn't have to give all these people to testify. I let them all do it, because we did nothing wrong. I knew that. They found nothing. With all of this, they spent 35 to 40 million dollars. They found nothing. So yeah, I think we've been treated very unfairly, and they're doing it, not for any legal reason, they're doing it for political reason, because they want win -- one, look. They want to win a race in 2020, and I see what they're up against today. I see where Biden put in a statement, or a strong statement that China is not a big problem. Well, China is a big problem. We're losing $500 billion a year to China. There's a great hostility, there's a great by -- China's a big problem -- Let me ask you -- -- and when somebody says that it shows they don't know what's happening. Let me ask you on China: what's it gonna take to close the deal with China? Well, we are very close to a deal with China, but it's a question of whether or not I want to make it. I mean, we're gonna make either a real deal or we're not gonna make a deal at all, and if we don't make a deal, we're gonna tariff China, and that'll be fine. We'll -- frankly, we'll make a lot of money. You know, you saw the deficit going down, you see the 3.2, which was highly -- you know -- the GDP was 3.2, first quarter, always the worst quarter, and we had a tremendous first quarter. This country is doing well. This country is doing probably better economically than it's ever done before. We have the best unemployment numbers we've had in 51 years, soon to be historic. Let me ask you, President Trump, where are you willing to give with the Chinese? Well look. I have a very good relationship with President Xi. But, as I explained to him, I don't blame them, because they ripped off our country and we allowed that to happen. I blame past Presidents and Representatives -- okay -- for allowing this to happen. Representatives of our country -- why did they let this happen? Why are we losing 500 billion -- for years -- $500 billion a year? We -- we rebuilt China. They took advantage of us on trade, like nobody in history has ever taken advantage of anyone. Now, we're making either a great deal, or we won't make a deal at all. And if we don't make a deal at all, we'll use tariffs, and we'll get back so much money, your head will spin. Are you on track for a June White House meeting with the Chinese President? I think it could happen. It depends where we are. I mean we're -- you know, very far, along on a deal -- Are you optimistic? -- with intellectual property theft. Are you optimistic? We're covering a lot of -- Are you optimistic about a June meeting? I think we can probably do that, yeah. I do. I think we can do that Catherine. I want to come back to the Attorney General, because the House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made a very serious charge today. She accused him of lying during his April testimony about his conversations with Mueller and Mueller's concerns.Should the Attorney General have volunteered to Congress during his April testimony that he had received the letter from Mueller and that Mueller had concerns about this notification to Congress and context? Well, I know nothing about it. You're just telling me that for the first time. But I will say this -- that we gave the entire report, four hundred and some odd pages, so whether it was a little bit, you know, down the road which, of course they want to be able to read it. They want to be able to see it. But any letter that was written or any statements that were made we have been -- I think they held back about 8 percent -- Right. -- and that's because they had a legal reason to hold back 8 percent. It was redacted, and even that I understand, is not a big deal. But we gave the entire report -- Right. So I don't think a letter makes any difference. Maybe, let me rephrase it. Please. Yeah. Do you think the Attorney General should have been more forthcoming during his April testimony and volunteered to lawmakers that he had received a letter from Robert Mueller and that Robert Mueller had concerns? I really don't know the subject. I really don't know what the complaint is. I think -- His complaint is about the Attorney General's notification to Congress lacking context, and really not effectively communicating the nature and the substance of the investigation. Well, of the investigation or what was in the agreement? I mean, what was in the -- the pages -- What was in the four-page letter from the Attorney General. Well, but, the four-page letter really was followed by four hundred and some odd pages very shortly thereafter, with very little redaction. So if you look at it, he was very open. Again, he was very transparent. We could have redacted, again, you know, we could have redacted 90 percent of it. We didn't have to give it at all. You know, it was my prerogative. I didn't have to give that four hundred page document at all. I could have held it back. In fact, Rod Rosenstein, I believe Rod Rosenstein wanted to hold it back. Others wanted to hold it back. People said you don't really have to give it at all. The deputy -- the deputy --- excuse me for interrupting. The Deputy Attorney General -- I had heard that his recommendation, no, he -- it wasn't like you have to, or we can't -- but we had the right, I had the right to hold back that document if I wanted to, or they did. They didn't do that. They gave the entire four hundred and some-odd page document, and that was made by the Attorney General, and perhaps the deputy, but there were people that said you didn't have to do it at all. We gave it. So we were very transparent. I can't imagine, Catherine, being more transparent. After everything that's happened today, under what circumstances would you allow the White House Counsel Don McGahn to testify to Congress about the Special Counsel investigation? Well, he's been testifying for so many hours. 30 hours. I allowed him to testify. Nobody else would do that. I did that because, wouldn't matter to me. He can say whatever he wants to say. I did nothing wrong. I knew that, and if I thought I did something wrong, I don't know what I'd do. I wouldn't have, probably, let anybody testify. But I let everybody -- again, almost 500 people they interviewed So you're saying -- There's never been anything like this. Now, they've already testified. I don't want to go through this -- and what's gonna happen when we're finished with the House, then we're gonna do another one with the Senate, then we're gonna do another one with somebody else? Look, I think what they should be focusing on is how did this mess start? How did this whole investigation start? Because I think it's corrupt as hell, and I think what's happened between Comey, and McCabe, and Brennan, and all of these people, and Strzok, and his lover Lisa Page -- there's tremendous things that people want to find out, and they really want to find it out, and I hope they're going to. Is there a timeline on when the public will see these Russia records declassified? Yes, I'm going to be allowing declassification pretty soon. I didn't want to do it originally because I wanted to wait, because I know what they -- you know, I've seen the way they play. They play very dirty. So I decided to do it, and I'm going to be doing if very soon, far more than you would have even thought. May, June, July? No, soon. I mean -- whenever they need it. Soon. Weeks? Whenever they need it. Whenever they need it I'll be doing it. But I will declassifying it. Everything. Director Comey wrote in the New York Times; he called you quote amoral, and that this has rubbed off on the Attorney General and the Deputy Attorney General. Well, Comey leaked and he lied. He lied in front to Congress. He was sworn testimony, classified information. I did a terrible job. Everybody wanted him fired -- you now everybody; Schumer, every Democrat almost, every Republican, almost-- probably 100 percent, but I say almost, just to say it so there's no mistake. But I read quotes from Schumer and prior to my firing everybody wanted him gone. He did a lousy job. He was a terrible director. Terrible. Can I ask -- There was dissension in the FBI. Can I ask you a question President Trump? Yeah. If you take Director Comey out of the equation, and his actions in 2016 and 2017, would the country be where it is today? I think that he did a terrible job. I would say he probably say he probably led some kind of an effort -- the word spying has been used. He probably was one of the people leading the effort on spying. So -- That's a very serious charge to make. I know, I know, and we'll find out whether or not it was true, and I think it could very well be true, but we're going to find out pretty soon. On Venezuela, if Juan Guaidó is detained -- Yeah -- or physically threatened, how will the U.S. respond? Well that won't be a good thing, that would be very unfortunate. He is actually a brave person, because I know what he is going through, I'm speaking to our people all the time, he is a brave guy. And what's happening in Venezuela is sad. When you look at 20 years ago, it's one of the wealthiest countries in the world, if you think about it. And now, they don't have food, and they don't have water, and people are dying from hunger. It's a very, very serious situation. What are your red lines in Venezuela? I don't want to say, but we have lots of options and some of them are very tough options. Is there a tipping point for military intervention? There's always a tipping point, but certainly, I'd rather not do that. I just want to help the people. The people are dying. They have nothing. These were people that were living well 20 years ago. Catherine, they have nothing. They don't have water and food. And they're dying of hunger right on the border. It's terrible. I want to talk about 2020. Okay. Have you told the Russian President to back off the 2020 election? I don't think I've spoken to him about the 2020, but I certainly have told him, you can't do what you're doing, and I don't believe they will be -- I don't believe they will be – Have you been very firm with the Russian president on that point? I think so, I think I have been. I think nobody's done more about Russia than I have. President Obama in September, before the November election -- my November election, if you look, he was told by the FBI and others, he did nothing about it. What could he have done? Well, he could have done something, I mean, he could have called out the troops and he could have said let's look at this very closely. He did absolutely nothing, because he thought that crooked Hillary was going to win the election, and she didn't even come close. So, it's just one of those things, you know? And it had nothing to do, by the way, with Russia, because everybody said it didn't effect the vote, you've heard that many times -- didn't effect the vote. But I don't want Russia or anybody else playing around with our elections. Senator Graham said to CBS last weekend that he would support more sanctions, not less. What's your position? On what? On Russia. Well, I think we've done a lot of sanctioning of Russia. I brought up the pipeline. I'm helping Ukraine far more than President Obama did. We're doing a lot of sanctions on Russia. I've signed a lot of sanctions on Russia. You know, eventually, we want to be able to get along with countries too. We have to remember that, whether it's Russia, or China or anybody else. But again, nobody has been tougher on Russia than Donald Trump. I want to ask you about politics. Okay. Another Democrat entered the race today. Is it Joe Biden's nomination to lose? Who is the other Democrat that entered? It was the Colorado -- a Senator, I believe, Bennet. He's not going to win. Is it Joe Biden -- is -- I think that Biden seems to have a lead. I'd be very happy if it were Biden. Happy, why? Sleepy Joe. I think he does -- I think he did a bad job, I'd be running against him and Obama. So, you think he is beatable? I just don't think he'd be a very good candidate. I mean, we'll see what happens. I hope -- you know, I wish him well. I'd like them to get it. I'd be happy. I'd be happy with Bernie. I personally think it's those two. Between those two? I think it's between those two. I don't see anybody else. But, could be, you never know. In my case -- Who would you rather face? -- I announced, and I was pretty much right -- I know, I was at the top from the beginning. I think he is now leading. Bernie would be second. We'll see what happens. Who would you rather face? Well, I don't want to say that to you. But, I don't think it matters that much. I think we're going to do well. We have the strongest economy that we've ever had. We're doing phenomenally. We have the best unemployment numbers. African-Americans, Asians, Hispanics -- best numbers we've ever had. Women, the best in 61 years -- unemployment numbers, job numbers, wealth numbers. We have the best numbers -- I think we have the best economy we've ever had. And we have more people, Catherine, working right now than ever in the history of our country. So, I don't know why somebody beats that. I'd like you comment on some statements the Vice President made while he was campaigning in Iowa. He said China is, quote, not competition for us, for the U.S. Are you talking about -- which Vice President? Vice -- I'm sorry, former Vice President Biden. I apologize. [Crosstalk] -- Vice President is a much more [Inaudible]. He wouldn't have made those statements. Pardon me. Mike Pence would not have made that statement. Everyone is competition. I view everybody as competition. If you live in -- [Crosstalk] Is he being naive about China? Well, he is being very naive about China. China, right now, we lose $500 billion. After I signed the deal, there won't be anything like that. China, just, during the Obama years in particular, just took advantage of our country so badly. A very, very big competition, China and, I've stopped it. And I am stopping it. You know, during the course of two and a half years, we've gone up $17 trillion in value. China has gone down $17 trillion. China, as you know, has taken a very, very big hit because of the tariffs, and everything else I've imposed. We'll see whether or not we have a deal, a very good chance to have a great deal. But for somebody to be so naive and say that China is not a problem, if Biden actually said that, that's a very dumb statement. That's -- that's -- that's the quote. Not competition for us. That's a very foolish statement. Should the former Vice President explain himself on his dealings in Ukraine, and whether there was a conflict -- Oh, I hear it's a -- yeah, I hear it's a very serious problem. -- with his son's business interests? Sure. I'm hearing it's a major scandal, major problem. Very bad things happened, and we'll see what that is. They even have him on tape, talking about it. They have Joe Biden on tape talking about the prosecutor, and I've seen that tape. A lot of people are talking about that tape, but that's up to them. They have to solve that problem. You retweeted a story from the New York Times today. On what? On Biden, the former Vice President. About that? About Ukraine? Ukraine, yeah. Yeah, yeah. No, I think it's a big problem. For him. Not fake news on that story. Ah, might not be. I hope for him it is fake news. I don't think it is. I know that we want to wrap up, but I just have a few more questions. Go ahead, real quick. If that's okay. Thank you very much. I just want to be clear on Don McGahn. Under what circumstances would you allow him to testify to Congress about the Special Counsel investigation? Well, I've had him testifying already for 30 hours. So, is the answer no to -- And it's really -- so I don't think I can let him and then tell everybody else you can, because especially him because he was a counsel. So, they've testified for many hours, all of them, many, many of my people -- So, as far as you're concerned, it's really -- it's kind of done, it's done? It's a blanket. I can't say, well, one can and the others can't. Okay. So, is it done? I would say it's done. Over. We've been through this. Nobody has ever done what I've done. I've given total transparency. It's never happened before like this. So, Congress should be -- Congress should be -- They -- they shouldn't be looking anymore. This is all -- it's done. Even my finances, it must have been looked at. For $35 million, I assume they've looked at my taxes. [Inaudible] I assumed Mueller looked at my financial statements, for $35 million and having 20 people, plus 49 FBI agents and all of the staff and all the money that was spent, they -- I assumed they looked at my taxes, which are fine. And I assume -- except, they are under audit, by the way, I will tell you that officially because -- And the New York Attorney General is coming at you pretty hard. Well, she campaigned on the fact that, oh, I'm going to get Trump, I'm going to get Trump. So, right there, she's precluded from doing anything. I mean, can you imagine somebody campaigning who doesn't know anything about me and she's campaigning on that fact. So, I assume that for the $35 million, they've gone through everything -- my taxes, my financial statements, which are phenomenal, they've gone through everything. And I'm so clean. Think of it, after two and a half years and all that money spent -- nothing. Very few people could have sustained that. I am getting the wrap up signal. Yeah. But if I could get a few more questions in -- Nah, I gotta -- I gotta go but we'll do another one. Okay, yeah, okay. II have that -- I have that group waiting for me? [Off camera] They're waiting right now. Yeah, can I just do -- can I do just one final question? Go ahead. [Inaudible] Okay, how did the Deputy Attorney General explain media reports that he discussed secretly recording you and invoking the 25th amendment? I don't know -- I don't know what happened. I mean that -- Did he have a phone call with you about it? Did he explain it on Air Force One? I mean, honestly I'd much rather have you ask him that question. It sounds a little bit farfetched frankly but a lot of things in this case are far-fetched. But I got along with him, and I think that question, you'd probably have to ask him. Okay. [Off Camera] Thank you. Anything you want to add? No, I think it's fine. Okay, all right. I think it's fine. Thank you very much for the opportunity. Thank you. I hope I'll be able to do it again. Thank you. Good. We will do it again. Thank you. Thank you Catherine. Appreciate it.