Mr. President, thank you for having us. Thank you, Joe. We're sitting in a pretty storied place. Very storied. It's really -- it's something to be right outside the -- the Oval Office. Last time we -- we met was in Davos. Yes, that's right. We talked about a lot of different things. One of the things that I asked you towards the end of the interview was, as a businessman and a problem solver, someone known for that, what are we going to do about education? I don't know if you remember that... Right? Sure, sure, sure. ...because we talked about a lot of other things, the economy. And you -- you sort of gave me a foreshadowing of what I think you're talking about today. Right, right. It was vocational schools, but I think it's been honed now, and -- and -- and it's much more -- the details are ready to come out now... Right. ...on what -- what we're calling -- or you're calling, is the Pledge to America's Workers, right? And -- and reskilling them -- workers. That's right. Which we have to do. We have to... Spearheaded by your daughter, Ivanka. Ivanka is very much involved, and she's been involved. We have tremendous numbers of people who really are phenomenal in every way. But they're not trained, and they're not qualified to take some of the jobs. You report on it all the time, all of the companies that are pouring back into our country. So we have Chrysler, we have so many companies, and we have companies expanding; look at what's happening with Apple, where they're going to be spending $350 billion. And I can go on and on. And we need people with skill. We need people who are trained. It's much different than it was 30 years ago and 40 years ago. We need people that can go out there and do it. And that's exactly what we're doing. And in front of you is a list that's going to create almost 4 million jobs. These are a list of companies. They'll be creating a tremendous number of jobs, and they're going to be skilled jobs, and these are people that will be trained, really trained, and trained well. The -- the co-chairman, co-chairwoman, along with Wilbur Ross, for the initiative, we mentioned, was Ivanka. And -- and when I spoke to her, she mentioned that the pledge, or that the goal was for 500,000, and then she said it was much greater than that, but she didn't tell me. Right. 3.7 million, was... This is -- this is -- yeah. 3.7... It's a good point. That's exactly right. That's the individuals that will benefit from... That is right. ...from skills, training. Training. And if you look at the companies, those are the great companies [Inaudible] This is all private sector-funded, too. Right. It's all private funded. So that -- this is an example of public/private partnership. Absolutely. Walmart, so many great companies. They're going to be here at 3 o'clock today. They'll be - we're going to be having a big conference. Everybody's here, and we're talking about almost 4 million jobs. The -- currently, things are -- the economy is pretty hot, running pretty hot. Hopefully not too hot. Right. No, but I -- I think it's maybe as good as it's ever been, ever. I mean, companies -- what I really am happy about is a lot of cash is coming back in through the billions and trillions of dollars, as you know, that was overseas, where companies were locked and they couldn't get it back. Now, it's coming back, hundreds of millions of dollars at a clip. And also, companies are coming back to our country. We have record numbers of companies coming back in. They're coming back. They're pouring back in. And they're going to Michigan, and they're going to Ohio, and Pennsylvania, and so many different states. And people can't believe what's happening. We're really doing well. Wage gains. Do you worry that -- is it time for the Fed to be doing what it's doing, do you think? Just to get a -- a -- a policy question in, should they be raising rates on -- on the trajectory that -- that is indicated, in your view? You know, I put a -- I -- I -- I put a very good man in the Fed. I don't necessarily agree with it, because he's raising interest rates. I'm not saying that I agree with it, and I don't necessarily agree with it. Real estate guy, too, yeah. I must tell you, I don't. Yeah. I'm not thrilled, because, you know, we go up, and every time you go up, they want to raise rates again. And I don't really -- I am not happy about it. But at the same time, I'm letting them do what they feel is best. But I don't like all of this work that goes into what we're doing. You look at the euro, you look at what's going on with the E.U., and they're not doing what we're doing. And we already have somewhat of a disadvantage, although I'm turning that into an advantage. You know, last year, and for years, we've been losing $150 billion with the E.U. nations, with the European Union, and they're making money easy, and their currency is falling. And China, their currency is dropping like a rock. And our currency is going up. And I can't -- I have to tell you, it puts us at a disadvantage. Now, I'm just saying the same thing that I would have said as a private citizen. So somebody would say, "Oh, maybe you shouldn't say that as a president." I couldn't care less what they say, because my views haven't changed. I don't like all of this work that we're putting into the economy, and then I see rates going up. I see China, where they're -- I mean, look at what's happening with their currency. It's dropping like a rock. And the E.U... It's partly because of the -- some of the -- some of the trade... Well, it's also -- like, I think I'm helping, OK, you want to know the truth, because I'm doing something. We're going to, you know, level out the playing field, just because... Can we talk about that... Sure. In -- in the context of the -- the stock market after the election, well documented. It was up, at one point, 40 percent or so. It's consolidated those gains... Right, yeah. ...and held on to the lion's share of those gains. Does that go into your thinking, in terms of if we're ever going to address some of these [Inaudible]? This is the time. This is the time to do it. This is the time. Is there a time when... You know the expression, "We're playing with the bank's money," right? We're up almost 40 percent. Is there -- is there a time where you say, "God, things are going so great with the economy, I'm worried about the headwind of trade..." Yeah. ...given that we have a tailwind with -- with tax reform, and deregulation, and all these great things happening. Do you look at it as, "Well, we've got all these tailwinds. We might as well have one headwind"? Or does there come a time where you say, "Look, I need to -- I -- I need to pull back a little, and -- and get what I can, but maybe not everything I want"? So, Joe, I could have a much easier life, if I wanted to do it incorrectly. It would be much easier for me. Sitting here, I could just let all of these countries continue onward with these massive deficits. I mean, honestly, I don't want to use the word, because it's a highly respected show, but they are taking advantage of us, OK? I'll use a different set of words. They are taking advantage of us. It's cable, though, if you really want to. [Laughter] I know, but it's not as good as the other word. You know what the other word is. Yeah. You can get away with it on cable. We are being taken advantage of. OK. And I don't like it, and I haven't liked it for many years. China, with China, $507 billion a year in deficits. With the E.U., $151 billion. With Mexico, $120 billion. Mexico -- who would think Mexico? Mexico's making a fortune. Plus they have a -- we -- they have a tax. We don't have a tax. They have a tax on top of that, and the tax is almost 17 percent -- a VAT tax. And you look -- I could go through every country. I could -- I could talk about Japan. I could talk about -- they're very good allies, but no wonder they're good. I mean, the -- the deficits, the money they're making off the United States. Now, I would have a higher stock market right now. It's already up almost 40 percent, as you know, since the election. It could be 80 percent if I didn't want to do this. But ultimately, what I'm doing is making it so it's right. Are you seeing... And we'll also start cutting expenses, by the way. Are you seeing some -- some signs, some glimmers of -- of success, of hope from some of these trading partners, that they're starting to... Oh, tremendous hope, and... I mean, but are they -- are -- are they starting to, what you think is -- is come around? How does this... Let me -- let me mention just one. Go ahead. Yesterday, we had our Delivering Alpha conference, CNBC. Bannon, Steve Bannon spoke. Right. He was talking about China -- said some very positive things, by the way, about -- about your presidency. But... He -- he should. [Laughter] Said, "For the first time in decades, we're winning against China. They're so scared, they don't know what to do." And Kudlow, at this point, was on, as well, who said, "The guy that may be holding things up is President Xi." Yeah. At this point. I don't want them to be scared. I want them to do well. I -- I really like President Xi a lot. But it's -- it was very unfair, so I raised $50 billion. We're down $500 billion. Now, some people would say $375 billion. I'm not talking about million, I'm not talking about pennies. I'm talking about, we're down $375 billion, but other estimates could say $507 billion. It doesn't matter. So it's in between there, or it's there. We're down a tremendous amount. I raised $50 billion, and they matched us. I say, "You don't match us. You can't match us, because otherwise, we're always going to be behind the eight ball." Joe Kernan We've got to go to $500 billion. We've got -- with -- with the midterms on the horizon. So I did -- I -- I... What does the stock market we're in... I just -- well, I actually think that's well. If it does, it does. Look, I'm not this for politics. I'm doing this... Twenty percent? I'm doing this to do the right thing for our country. We have been ripped off by China for a long time. And I told that to President Xi. I said, "How did this ever happen?" And you know what their answer is? Because I deal with the highest echelons of China. One of the great people of China said, "There was never anybody to talk to in the United States. We would put on a trade barrier where you couldn't sell cars, or you couldn't sell beef, or you couldn't sell your farm products. We would put it, and nobody would talk to us in the United States, so we said, 'Hey, that's great.' Then we'd put on another one. We'd put on a tariff on cars, 25 percent, and you'd charge us virtually nothing, 2.5 percent, but they don't pay it. So we would do this, and nobody would talk. We'd start off at a lower number, we'd raise it, we'd raise it. Nobody would ever complain..." Yeah. ...until you came along. Me. And they said, "Now, you're doing more than complaining. We don't like what you're doing." You know, they think I'm doing, maybe, too much, but of course they're going to think that. But for many years -- and I'm not just saying Obama. I'm saying... Right. ...Bush, and I'm saying long before -- they had nobody. And it's very interesting, because I actually asked them the question: So we're down $507 billion -- recently -- we're down $507 billion... Right. ...in trade deficits. How did it happen? And they told me, "Nobody ever complained. Nobody ever talked to us." This morning you tweeted, interesting tweet. "Second meeting, potentially, with -- with Vladimir Putin." Yeah. Is that in the works? Is it planned? Has it been talked about? Yeah, I would say it's in the works. Look, we had a tremendous discussion on many things: terrorism, Syria, the Middle East overall, Iran. We talked about, as an example, nuclear proliferation. There's nothing -- to me, there's nothing more important than that. We had a tremendous meeting. We had a -- I think it was a very good press conference. I mean, I -- except for the fake news, I really think I did very well at the press conference, [Inaudible]. But -- but a second meeting... Second meeting, yeah. ...was -- you've broached the subject with -- with [Inaudible]... We got along very well. Look, the fact is, we got along very well. We, I think, could do great things for his country, but for our country. I'm interested in our country. I'm also interested in the world. Right. I'd like to see peace. And I think we can do great things for the world. I think we can do... Now, that includes China, that includes others. I'm doing very well getting along with countries. Getting along is a good thing, not a bad thing. And -- and I... But I think I'd have a good relationship with Putin. You -- you have a personal relationship with people that -- that I've seen for... I do. I do. ...for many, many years, all right? And -- and I -- I understand how that works. Looking at what you're... Even you, which is almost impossible, right? [Laughter] And as far as -- thank you. Yeah. As far as -- as the end-game with Russia, there are lots of things that -- that you think we can -- we can do, in terms of making the world safer, with Russia. Yeah. So the personal relationship... And -- and by the way, that's good for everybody. But the relationship you had with Putin, the -- the tone, which was relatively conciliatory... Right. ...for -- for what some people say is an enemy or an adversary, can that tone totally be explained by you wanting to do the best things for the country... Sure, sure. ...or is there some -- some under... OK. Is there something underlying that? No. I have nothing to do with Russia. I never did. That other deal was a big hoax. It's a hoax. So it's totally just -- in your -- in your view... The Russia -- it's called the Democrat hoax. It's a big, fat hoax. I have nothing to do with Russia. And I think you know that. You would know. You've known me for a long time, OK? I know how you are with people, and I could see that knowing... You think I'm dealing in Russia? [Inaudible] ...knowing what -- that you want to accomplish, in foreign policy and domestically... Yeah. ...I could see -- I could see that tone not necessarily having anything do with other than wanting the best things for the country. So I had a meeting that lasted for more than two hours. It wasn't always conciliatory in the meeting. Right. Oh, that hasn't come out. Did you... No, but we discussed many of the points I just said. OK. And basically, that's what we discussed. We discussed lots of good things for both countries, frankly. But there are things that we can do for both countries that are very good. Now, we then go to a news conference. I mean, I had these -- some of these fools from the media saying, "Why didn't you stand there, look him in the face, walk over to him, and start shouting at him?" I said, "Are these people crazy? I want to make a deal. I want to make a deal. You can't do that." And we've been having a bad relationship with Russia for many years. And you know, that may be wrong. I -- it may be that you can't do anything. It may -- that's very possible. But I'm different than other presidents. I'm a dealmaker. I've made deals all my life. I do really well. I -- I make great deals. You know it, because you've covered them for a long time, Joe. And I think if we can get along with Russia and other countries... Does it help with -- with China to have Russia as -- as -- almost as a -- to -- to set them... It doesn't hurt, OK? It doesn't hurt. And that -- that was in your mind, as well. Maybe, in the computer. I mean, maybe. It probably doesn't hurt, you know. But I'm not even looking at it that way. I'm just saying if we could do certain things on terrorism -- as an example, we found out that in St. Petersburg, a little more than a year ago, there was going to be a very major terrorist attack -- St. Petersburg, Russia. Right. We called them and let them know. They were able to nab this very vicious gang of terrorists. They got them. Yeah. I assume they are someplace right now that maybe you don't even want to know about. I don't know what they did with them, OK? Look, I -- I know... And I don't care. But wait a minute. Yeah. They thanked us profusely. This was going to be a major attack. We found out about it, and we gave them that information. That's a good thing. And Putin called me up -- President Putin called me up and he said, "I want to thank you very much." That would have been a major attack in St. Petersburg. We informed them. I don't think anybody even knows about that. These are good things. They inform us. They can inform us. Getting along is a good thing, not a bad thing. The fake news, they want to make it like where there's a big confrontation. I don't want to play that game. I don't want to go into that game. Any timeline on the next meeting, Mr. President? Yeah. Let -- let me just say this. OK, go ahead. With that being said, I have been far tougher on Russia than any president in many, many years, maybe ever. Even -- even the big fight I have with Germany over the fact that they're taking natural gas, they're taking... Right. ...energy from Russia, paying them billions of dollars -- I said, "Wait a minute. We're supposed to be protecting you from Russia, and you're paying them billions of dollars. What's that all about?" Now, do you think that's a positive for Russia? I'm talking them out of things that they -- where they're giving billions of dollars. It's ridiculous, by the way, that that's happening. And then on top of that, Germany pays a fraction of what they should be paying for defense. We're supposed to defend them. So they're paying Russia, and we're supposed to defend them from Russia. So just -- you just look at that point. But look at the sanctions I've put on. Look at the diplomats I threw out. Look at all of the things that I've done. Nobody else did what I've done. Obama didn't do it. Obama was a patsy for Russia. He was a total patsy. Look at the statement he made, when he thought the mics were turned off, OK? The stupid statement he made. Nobody does a big deal about that. Getting along with President Putin, getting along with Russia's a positive, not a negative. Right. Now, with that being said, if that doesn't work out, I'll be the worst enemy he's ever had -- the worst he's ever had. I don't want to end it on that note, but we -- we do have to end it. No, no, I think -- I think he knows that, though. Yes. I'll be his worst nightmare. But I don't think it'll be that way. I actually think we'll have a good relationship. Well, I think it'd be -- you know, it -- it -- it's obviously in the -- as the two last nuclear superpowers, or at least the two largest... Ninety percent. I think we all -- yeah. Ninety percent, think of it, the two countries. All right, Mr. President, once again... Thank you very much, Joe. Thank you. Thank you. I appreciate it very much. Thank you. Thank you.