The president also said he hoped to host next year's meeting at the Trump National Doral Golf Club in Miami

By Rachel DeSantis
August 27, 2019 12:04 PM
Michael Kappeler/picture alliance via Getty

President Donald Trump wrapped the G7 summit in France on Monday with a wide-ranging news conference that covered everything from his desire to host next year’s sit-down of world leaders at his own Miami golf resort to his dismissal of climate change solutions as nothing but “dreams” to his false claim that his wife has a relationship with Kim Jong Un.

That latter statement was soon corrected by the White House.

“The first lady has gotten to know Kim Jong Un, and I think she would agree with me he is a man with a country that has tremendous potential,” Trump said originally.

But after that his spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, told reporters, “President Trump confides in his wife on many issues including the detailed elements of his strong relationship with Chairman Kim — and while the first lady hasn’t met him, the president feels like she’s gotten to know him too.”

The president spoke at the Hôtel du Palais in Biarritz and sang the praises of his very own Trump National Doral Golf Club, where he expressed interest in hosting Canada, France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Japan and Italy next year. Though he has turned over daily operations of his eponymous real estate company to his family, Trump retains his ownership stake — and the profits that his properties make.

Trump had brought up his club during a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and again declared his intent to host during Monday’s presser, claiming Dorral’s close proximity to airports made it a prime contender.

When asked what he could tell the American people to reassure them he was not seeking to make money from the presidency — given his unusual blending of private business interests and public responsibility — Trump for the second time this month griped that the gig has, according to his own estimates, cost him “anywhere from $3-5 billion.”

“The only thing I care about is this country, couldn’t care less, otherwise I wouldn’t have done it,” he said. “I used to get a lot of money to make speeches. Now, I make speeches all the time. You know what I get? Zippo, and that’s good.”

Meanwhile, Trump, a longtime skeptic of alternative energy (and windmills), also talked climate change after skipping an earlier session on the topic, which Grisham blamed on conflicting schedules.

President Donald Trump

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“I feel that the United States has tremendous wealth,” Trump said. “We are now the No. 1 energy producer in the world, and soon it will be by far … I’m not going to lose that wealth on dreams, on windmills, which, frankly, aren’t working too well.”

Trump falsely claimed back in April that noise produced by windmills “causes cancer,” though a 2014 report from the National Institutes of Health that found wind turbines were not related to adverse health.

The president on Monday declared himself an “environmentalist” despite past actions to the contrary, including his withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement and a tweet that once declared global warming as having been created by China.

“I think I know more about the environment than most people,” he boasted.

Elsewhere in his news conference, Trump again mentioned he hopes to see Russia return to the G7 following its 2014 removal over the annexation of Crimea. He had reportedly expressed his view with other G7 leaders, several of whom responded with their concerns about Russia’s autocratic behavior — at odds with G7’s democratic values.

“Is it good? Probably not. Maybe it is,” Trump said of the possibility of a Russian return. “A lot of people say having Russia — which is a power — having them inside the room is better than having them outside the room.”