Just when you thought President Donald Trump was done feeding his chronic obsession with himself, he isn’t.
In an interview with the Associated Press on Friday, April 21, discussing his first 100 days in office, Trump bragged about how he had helped CBS’ Sunday show “Face the Nation” achieve its highest ratings “since the World Trade Center came down.”
“It’s interesting, I have, seem to get very high ratings,” the president boasted of his role in drawing millions of viewers to TV networks.
In the process of boosting himself up, Trump took the opportunity to take jabs at the highly rated political talk show, repeatedly referring to it as “Deface the Nation.”
“On any, on air, [CBS ‘Face the Nation’ host John] Dickerson had 5.2 million people. It’s the highest for ‘Face the Nation’ or as I call it, ‘Deface the Nation,'” he said during the interview. “It’s the highest for ‘Deface the Nation’ since the World Trade Center. Since the World Trade Center came down. It’s a tremendous advantage.”
It’s not exactly clear what appearance on the Sunday morning show Trump was referring to, as such an interview with Dickerson hasn’t happened yet. The former reality TV star is indeed slated to sit down with the host for an interview that will correspond with his first 100 days in office, CBS News reported, but it hasn’t happened yet. The first half of the interview is set to air on “Face the Nation,” Sunday, April 30, with the second half airing on “CBS This Morning” the following day.
The president’s head-scratching comments didn’t stop there, however.
During the interview, conducted by AP White House Correspondent Julie Pace, Trump said he’s “mostly there” on fulfilling the promises of his first 100 days in office. This is despite the fact that he’s fallen short of many of the legislative goals laid out in his 100-day plan, including his promise to repeal and replace Obamacare.
“Somebody, yeah, somebody put out the concept of a 100-day plan,” Trump said. “But yeah. Well, I’m mostly there on most items. Go over the items, and I’ll talk to you …”
The real estate mogul also denied ever supporting hacker organization WikiLeaks and even commented that the Electoral College is “very difficult for a Republican to win” because it’s unfairly “skewed” toward Democrats.
“The Electoral College is so skewed in favor of a Democrat that it’s very, very hard,” he said. “Look at Obama’s number in the Electoral College. His numbers on the win were … but the Electoral College numbers were massive.”
The AP transcript notes that where the audio recording of the interview is unclear, ellipses or a notation that the recording was unintelligible were used. There are at least 16 instances of this throughout the interview between Pace and Trump, making it that much harder to follow just what the president was saying. Trump also interrupted himself frequently and at one point paused to offer Pace a Coca-Cola.
The president went on to exaggerate a conversation he had with Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) in late March, in which he said the African-American congressman told him he would be “the greatest president in the history of this country.”
“I met with Congressman Cummings and I really liked him, a lot. Elijah Cummings [of Maryland],” Trump said. “He came to see me, at my invitation, because I saw him talking about, he came to see me about drug prices because drug prices are ridiculous. And I am going to get them way, way, way down and he liked that. He said you will be the greatest president. He said you will be, in front of five, six people, he said you will be the greatest president in the history of this country.”
Rep. Cummings has since disputed the president’s comments, saying that’s not quite how the conversation went down.
“During my meeting with the president and on several occasions since then, I have said repeatedly that he could be a great president if … if … he takes steps to truly represent all Americans rather than continuing on the divisive and harmful path he is currently on,” the congressman said in a statement.
Read the full transcript of Trump’s AP interview here.