About 10 minutes into the flight, President Trump invited the pool to his office in the front of the plane to watch the Senate confirmation vote on Brett Kavanaugh.


Air Force One touched down in Topeka, Kansas, just before 5 p.m. CT.
Lots of Kavanaugh-related quotes below. Some of the highlights are in bold.  The news was sufficient to merit a rare “wire call” in flight, so you may have already seen much of this.


About 10 minutes into the flight, President Trump invited the pool to his office in the front of the plane to watch the Senate confirmation vote on Brett Kavanaugh. Pool was with him for roughly 20 minutes, the last seven on the record, starting when Vice President Mike Pence announced the outcome.

The president smiled. His hands, which had been clasped in a relaxed way on the desk in front of him, separated and he flashed both thumbs up. Aides, including Mercedes Schlapp, applauded.

Then he said: “Great. Very good. Very, very good. We’re very happy about it. Great decision. I very much appreciate those 50 great votes. And I think he’s going to go down as a totally brilliant Supreme Court justice for many years. Many years. He was chosen for the reason of his temperament, his incredible past, his outstanding years on the court. He just had an outstanding record. A brilliant scholar—totally brilliant scholar. Top. And we’re very honored that he was able to withstand this horrible, horrible attack by the Democrats. It’s a horrible attack that nobody should have to go through.”

This is the smaller Air Force One. The office is fairly small. Writers and still photographers were crammed in. TV cameras were brought in for the on-the-record part. POTUS sat at his desk, windows at his right, medium-sized TV behind him, larger TV on the far wall. Both tuned to Fox News. Blue suit, red tie, flag lapel pin. He began taking questions.

Q: You said it was a “scary moment” for young men. What about women upset by how this turned out?

“I don’t think they are. I think actually that women… The people that spoke to me most vocif [sic – he was starting to say “vociferously”]—really in the strongest of terms in his favor were women. Women. Women were outraged at what happened to Brett Kavanaugh, outraged, and I think that’s a total misnomer because the women, I feel, were in many ways stronger than the men in his favor. So you have a lot of women that are extremely happy. A tremendous number of women. Because they’re thinking of their sons, they’re thinking of their husbands and their brothers, their uncles, and others. And women are I think extremely happy.”

He referred to protesters outside the Capitol. “You look at that small number of people outside…And look at where we’re going. And we will have thousands and thousands of people. Going to Kansas, we’re going to have thousands of people. Totally sold out arenas –and you know better than I do, with tens of thousands of people outside trying to get in. And those people are for him.”

Referring again to the protesters: “That crowd could sit in the second row” of his own rally.

Q “When these allegations first surfaced you said there shouldn’t even be a little doubt. Are you a hundred percent certain –” (the rest of the question was “that Ford named the wrong person?” but by then POTUS had interrupted and begun speaking)

I’m a hundred percent. I’m a hundred percent. I have no doubt. The FBI has done an excellent job. They went through and they went through it seven times. The FBI went through seven investigations and they did a very thorough job, excellent job. And you know the other thing we know about life: if there were any problems it would have happened over the last 25 or 30 years during his professional life. If any of that – if there was even a scintilla of something wrong – he was a very big judge for years, on what they call the second highest court. That would have come out loud and clear. This is – one of the reasons I chose him is because there is nobody with a squeaky clean past like Brett Kavanaugh. He is an outstanding person and I’m very honored to have chosen him and he will be there for many years.”

Q What impact will this confirmation fight have on the midterms?

“I think we’re going to do great in the midterms. I think the Republicans are going to do great in the midterms. I think we have a momentum that hasn’t been seen in years. When you hear those screamers in Congress today, the screaming that – you see how orchestrated it is, how phony it is. They practice it together and they do it with the Democrats. This is all the Democrats. It’s so bad. It’s so bad for our country and people see it…. You hear it’s all synchronized.  It’s all phony stuff. 

“When you see their signs, you notice yesterday – I talked about the signs all week, today they’re all different because they said oh, we can’t do the same sign made by a manufacturer, paid for by Soros or whoever. So I think Republicans are going to do incredibly well, although history always says that whoever’s president it goes a little bit the other way. I think we’re going to do really well.”

Because “We have the greatest economy in the history of our country. We have an economy like no other.” Best unemployment report came out Friday since 1969. “Probably the greatest economy we’ve ever had. That has a lot to do with it. Tax cuts. Regulation cuts. Two Supreme Court justices. Many people on the federal courts. Nobody’s done what we have done.”

He asserted that Republicans protect pre-existing conditions and protecting Social Security, unlike the Democrats.

Q Asked about Montana Sen. Steve Daines missing the vote for his daughter’s wedding.

“He was ready to come if we needed his vote.”

Q What impact did his Mississippi speech (mocking Kavanaugh’s accuser) have on the fight?

I think that the Mississippi speech had a great impact, yes. I think it was a very important thing.Hey look, the Washington Post said it on their front page. I can’t believe they said it, but they said it.”

Produced by members of the White House Correspondents Association (WHCA), these brief Pool Reports track American president. The White House Press Pool is composed of the members of the White House Press...

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