A full transcript of Trump's first solo press conference follows.
I just wanted to begin by mentioning that the nominee for secretary of the Department of Labor will be Mr. Alex Acosta. He has a law degree from Harvard Law School, great student, former clerk for Justice Samuel Alito, and he has had a tremendous career. He's a member and has been a member of the National Labor Relations Board, and he's been through Senate confirmation three times, confirmed, did very, very well. And so Alex, I wished him the best. We just spoke, and he's going to be a tremendous secretary of Labor. And, also, as you probably heard just a little while ago, Mick Mulvaney, former congressman, has just been approved, weeks late. I have to say that, weeks, weeks late, Office of Management and Budget, and he will be, I think, a fantastic addition. Paul Singer just left. As you know, he was very much involved with the anti-Trump or as they say, Never Trump, and Paul left and gave us total support. It's all about unification. We're unifying the party and hopefully we'll unify the country. It's very important to me. I've been talking about that for a long time, but it's very, very important to me. I thank Paul for being here, coming up to the office, he was very strong opponent, and now he's a very strong ally, and I appreciate that. I think I'll say a few words and take some questions.
I had this time, we've been negotiating a lot of different transactions to save money on contracts that were terrible, including airplane contracts that were out of control and late and terrible. Just absolutely catastrophic in terms of what was happening. And we've done some really good work and we're proud of that. Right after that, you prepare yourselves for questions, unless you have no questions, that's always a responsibility. I'm here today to update the American people on the incredible progress that has been made in the last four weeks since my inauguration.
We have made incredible progress. I don't think there's ever been a president elected who in this short period of time has done what we've done.
A new Rasmussen poll, in fact, because the people get it, much of the media doesn't get it, they actually get it but they don't write it, let's put it that way, but a new Rasmussen poll came out a short while ago, and it has our approval rating at 55 percent and going up.
The stock market has hit record numbers, as you know, and there's been a tremendous surge of optimism in the business world, which means something different than it used to. Now it means it's good for jobs. Very different. Plants and factories are already starting to move back into the United States, big league, Ford, General Motors. I'm making this presentation directly to the American people with the media present, which, it's an honor to have you this morning because many of our nation's reporters and folks will not tell you the truth and will not treat the wonderful people of our country with the respect that they deserve. And I hope going forward we can be a little bit different, and maybe get along a little bit better, if that's possible. Maybe it's not and that's OK too. Unfortunately, much of the media in Washington, DC, along with New York, Los Angeles, in particular, speaks not for the people, but for the special interests and for those profiting off a very, very obviously broken system.
The press has become so dishonest that if we don't talk about it, we are doing a tremendous disservice to the American people. Tremendous disservice. We have to talk about it. We have to find out what's going on because the press, honestly, is out of control. The level of dishonesty is out of control. I ran for president to represent the citizens of our country. I am here to change the broken system so it serves their families and their communities well. I am talking, and really talking, on this very entrenched power structure and what we're doing is we're talking about the power structure. We're talking about its entrenchment. As a result, the media's going through what they have to go through to oftentimes distort — not all the time — and some of the media's fantastic, I have to say, honest and fantastic — but much of it is not. The distortion, and we'll talk about it, you'll be able to ask me questions about it. We're not going to let it happen because I'm here, again, to take my message straight to the people.
As you know, our administration inherited many problems across government and across the economy. To be honest, I inherited a mess. A mess. At home, and abroad. A mess. Jobs are pouring out of the country. You see what's going on with all of the companies leaving our country, going to Mexico and other places. Low pay, low wages.
Mass instability overseas, no matter where you look. The Middle East, a disaster. North Korea, we'll take care of it, folks. We're going to take care of it all. I just want to let you know. I inherited a mess. Beginning on day one, our administration went to work to tackle these challenges. On foreign affairs, we've begun enormously productive talks with foreign leaders, much of which you've covered, to move forward to security, stability and peace in the most troubled regions of the world, which there are many.
We've had great conversations with the United Kingdom and meetings, Israel, Mexico, Japan, China and Canada. Really, really productive conversations. I would say far more productive than you would understand. We've even developed a new council with Canada to promote women's business leaders and entrepreneurs. Very important to me. Very important to my daughter, Ivanka.
I have directed our defense community headed by our great general, now Secretary Mattis, he's over there now working very hard, to submit a plan for the defeat of ISIS, a group that celebrates murder and torture of innocent people in large sections of the world. Used to be a small group. Now it's in large sections of the world. They've spread like cancer. ISIS has spread like cancer.
Another mess I inherited. We have imposed new sanctions on the nation of Iran, who has totally taken advantage of our previous administration. And they are the world's top sponsor of terrorism. And we're not going to stop until that problem is properly solved, and it's not now. It's one of the worst agreements I've ever seen drawn by anybody. I've ordered plans to begin for the massive rebuilding of the United States military.
I've had great support from the Senate. I've had great support from Congress, generally. We've pursued this rebuilding in the hopes that we will never have to use this military. I will tell you, that is my — I would be so happy if we never had to use it, but our country will never have had a military like the military we're about to build and rebuild. We have the greatest people on earth in our military.
They don't have the right equipment, and their equipment is old. I used it. I talked about it. At every stop. Depleted. It's depleted. It won't be depleted for long. One of the reasons I'm standing here instead of other people is, frankly, I talked about we have to have a strong military. We have to have strong law enforcement also.
So we do not go abroad in the search of war. We really are searching for peace. It's peace through strength. At home, we have begun the monumental task of returning the government to the people to a scale not seen in many, many years. In each of these actions, I'm keeping my promises to the American people. These are campaign…. [WHITE HOUSE FEED CUTS OUT]
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