The Bulletin has obtained a partial transcript of Wednesday’s phone call between U.S. President Donald Trump and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
TRUMP: I’m saying it’s a bad deal. I don’t want them here. I don’t want illegals here, from anywhere. It’s not just you. From anywhere.
TURNBULL: I understand, Mr. President. However, I think you’ll agree they’re not technically illegal immigrants if they were granted entry into your—into the country. Your country. The previous administration–
TRUMP: Technically, I mean, anything could be true. I mean, I understand why they want to come here. Okay? I mean, do I understand? Of course, I understand. There versus here. I mean… Who wouldn’t? What do you guys have there? Kangaroos? And heat?
TRUMP: I mean, I like Australia, don’t get me wrong. I like it very much. Been there many times, done many beautiful deals there. Many terrific deals. Beautiful country. But I don’t think anyone—I think it’d be very difficult, very difficult, to find anyone who’d say that kangaroos are one of the great animals. Right? I mean… Good animal? Yeah. Maybe. Okay. Decent animal? Okay. They got the pouch, the thing, they bounce. Okay. But great? I don’t think so. I don’t think so.
TURNBULL: Mr. President?
TRUMP: Not a great animal. You want to tell me different, I’m going to say, ‘I don’t think so. I don’t think so.’ And most experts agree with me on that, by the way. The vast majority.
TURNBULL: I think we’re getting off point a bit here—
TRUMP: Koala is a cute animal. A very cute animal. But it’s drunk on the leaves, right? How great can it be, really, if it’s drunk constantly? So, that’s another where I think you’ll find most experts would say, and do say, ‘Cute? Yeah. Great animal? Not so much. No. Not so much.’
TURNBULL: I—Forgive me, Mr. President. I’m a little confused.
TRUMP: I know. You know why? Because you’ve never heard a president talk like this. Am I right?
TURNBULL: That is absolutely right, yes.
TRUMP: Right. Because it’s different now. You know what that means? It’s a movement. I received a record number of votes – just an unbelievable number. Millions and millions. Nothing like it before. And then millions of people at my inauguration. Okay? Regardless of reports you may have seen, believe me, millions of people were there that day. Probably, maybe even — Some people – I’ve even seen reports maybe two, three million. Okay? Several reports. Reputable outlets. But millions of people. Because it was a movement. And it was a movement, the likes of which has never been seen before. Nothing like it before. And that’s why you’re confused.