2016 GOP presidential candidate sounds off on 'Hannity'
HANNITY: Welcome to "Hannity." A nuclear deal with Iran has been reached, but don't expect the foremost state sponsor of terror to change its ways -- that according to President Obama. Here's what he said earlier today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: My hope is that building on this deal, we can continue to have conversations with Iran that incentivize them to behave differently in the region, to be less aggressive, less hostile, more cooperative, to operate the way we expect nations of the international community to behave. But we're not counting on it. So this deal is not contingent on Iran changing its behavior.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Wow! Now, while the president struggles to defend his signature deal, many of America's closest allies in the Middle East -- they are attacking this agreement. And right here at home, politicians on both sides of the aisle have been extremely critical of the deal, including 2016 presidential hopeful Donald Trump, who called it terrible.
Joining us now is the man himself, 2016 Republican presidential candidate, now number one in the latest poll with 17 percent, Donald Trump. Sir, how are you?
DONALD TRUMP (R-NY), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Hello, Sean.
HANNITY: Let me -- let me start with this deal and just get your initial thoughts on it because they're the number one state sponsor of terror. They repeatedly say they're going to destroy Israel. Five days ago, they were chanting "Death to Israel, "Death to the U.S." and burning our flags.
What is your thoughts on even sitting down with them?
TRUMP: Well, the whole thing is a disgrace, that a deal like this could be signed. We had so many advantages. They're going to become a very, very rich nation. You know, they're getting billions and billions of dollars.
We have our inspecting teams. You know, unless you got anytime, anyplace -- I mean, that's what you want. You have to have anytime, anyplace. You have to go in there and check. We have to give 28 and 24- day notices.
And you know, I just look at this deal, it's so ridiculous. And not to mention the fact, which to me is very important, all of the money that they're getting, Sean, but how about the four prisoners? Why aren't we getting our four prisoners out? Kerry said he didn't want to complicate the negotiation for asking -- by asking for four prisoners.
These guys are babies. We have babies. And as you know, they're celebrating in the streets of Iran. They're going wild in the streets. They made a phenomenal deal. It's just incredible.
This is amateur night. I've never seen anything like it.
HANNITY: Let me -- let me go to the four prisoners you mentioned. Major Garrett asked the president about that today. The president got real testy. Here's how that went down.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAJOR GARRETT, CBS NEWS: Can you tell the country, sir, why you are content with all the fanfare around this deal to leave the conscious (sic) of this nation, the strength of this nation unaccounted for in relation to these four Americans?
OBAMA: The notion that I'm "content" as I celebrate with American citizens languishing in Iranian jails -- Major, that's nonsense. And you should know better. If the question is why we did not tie the negotiations to their release, think about the logic that that creates. Suddenly, Iran realizes, You know what? Maybe we can get additional concessions out of the Americans.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Well, we're giving them $150 billion. They continue to spin their centrifuges. They get conventional arms as part of the deal, and 24 days notice, and they have to approve any inspections! Wow. We couldn't get the four Americans?
TRUMP: Well, the answer -- I just hear it now for the first time -- that's incredible to think that we would ask for them and they'd get more. Why would they get more? They're getting so much. You just say -- if you have the right message -- I guarantee, if I were there, you'd have those prisoners. If I were president, you'd have those prisoners and they'd be back really, really fast.
You remember Ronald Reagan when they had the hostages. And as soon as he got -- you know, once it was obvious that he was in there, they were let go so fast. They had no respect for Jimmy Carter, and they had a lot of respect for Ronald Reagan.
So I just think it's incredible. I think his answer is incredible, that it would have opened up the -- it's a simple thing. We want our prisoners back. They're not doing you any good. They're in horrible jails, from what I hear, the worst. And these are four people that shouldn't be there in the first place.
So I mean, it's just incredible that he would say something like that. That's such a simple thing to do. And it would have been good for them. You know what? It would have softened the deal even from their standpoint. They don't want these prisoners. They don't need these prisoners. It's almost like they're taunting us by keeping these prisoners.
HANNITY: What would a President Trump have done differently from the outset, and what would be the parameters of a Trump deal?
TRUMP: Well, as you know, I did read -- and oftentimes, everybody else is telling me, you know, it's the best book -- but I did write "The Art of the Deal." And they didn't write and they didn't read it. And I will tell you, it's -- it's to me amazing, Sean, because you look at the basics of what they've done and how they've done it.
I would have doubled and tripled up the sanctions very easily. I would have waited for them to call us. I would have said, We want the prisoners, by the way, before we even start. They would have given them up in about 10 minutes. And believe me, we would have had a deal that would have been much better.
But you know, what we're doing is just insane. And from what -- everything I read, at the end of the term, they're going to be able to very easily produce nuclear weapons, which is really the worst of all.
I'll tell you, this is a terrible deal for us. This is a potentially catastrophic deal for Israel. Israel has to be very nervous about what's going on with Iran right now.
HANNITY: Let me go back to the issue of immigration, which has, I would argue, catapulted you to the top. It's now -- every single candidate is discussing the issue at length and in detail as a result of your position.
This drug kingpin, El Chapo, has pretty much threatened you and told you to be quiet. What is your response back to him?
TRUMP: You know, what I'm bringing up is much more important than Donald Trump. My life -- you know, frankly, what I'm doing is so important for the country. I'm so -- first of all, I appreciate your question, the way you worded it, because the truth is, we wouldn't be talking about illegal immigration if it weren't for me.
I brought it up. They hammered me, and then they found out they were wrong. And so many people have apologized to me over the last week because, you know, when I made my statement, they didn't read my statement. They read little pieces of my statement and tried to make me look bad.
Fortunately, you have some very good reporters, and some of the media was honest. And a lot of people are apologizing to me.
I brought up illegal immigration. I talked about Mexico because I'm not talking about individual -- I'm talking about Mexico is forcing people in that they don't want, and they want us to take care of those people. They want us to put those people in prisons because they don't want -- if you remember, many years ago, Cuba, Fidel Castro emptied his jails and sent them to us.
Well, in a much more sophisticated way, that's what Mexico is doing also at the border so -- because they don't want the cost. The cost is tremendous. And then you look at what happened with the escape, it's a pretty sad state of affairs.
So had I not brought immigration up and illegal immigration in particular, you wouldn't be talking about it right now. You wouldn't be asking me the question. And now all of the candidates are trying to jump on.
But here's the problem. They're weak and they don't understand what to do. And you have to build a wall and you have to have very, very strong people there, and you will be able to control it.
And I had an idea recently. When they send illegals into our country, we charge Mexico $100,000 for every illegal that crosses that border because it's trouble.
I want them to come in, let them be legal. They have to go through a process. And the Hispanics agree with me on that. Many -- I love the Mexican people, their spirit and everything else. But they agree. They've worked hard to become legal, and they don't like what's happening at the border where all of these illegals are flowing through.
HANNITY: As you know, Mr. Trump, I was down at the border some dozen times, everywhere from the Rio Grande all the way through San Diego, where there was a drug warehouse, an office building tunnel that had been built. I was in the tunnel.
When I sat through a briefing last year with Governor Perry, the one that President Obama should have been at, I was told that since 2008, 645,000 crimes against Texans alone -- since 2008!
Why are people so resistant to acknowledge what is a simple, you know, unadulterated truth that crimes are happening because our border is not secure? Why do you think there's so much difficulty and controversy in just stating that fact?
TRUMP: Well, first of all, Governor Perry did a terrible job. When he was governor of Texas, he could have done a lot better in terms of securing the border. He did a terrible job. And whether he likes it or doesn't like it, I personally don't care. But the job he did in terms of border secure was absolutely terrible.
And what I've heard from a lot of people, you know, Mr. Shore (ph) has this incredible son, who was killed and just horribly killed by an illegal that came in -- this unbelievable young guy that was going to go to college on a scholarship, applying to Stanford and all of this just -- just wiped out.
What he told me is that when people hear it's an illegal that's (INAUDIBLE) leave him alone. They don't do anything. They were going really after the guy. As soon as they found out he was illegal, our law enforcement didn't want to do anything. They don't want to work the same way.
And I'm saying, What is this. a double standard? And the answer is you actually have a double standard. It's hard to believe. They were going -- and I've heard this from five or six other groups.
You know, we had news conference last week with five unbelievable families whose children had been -- I mean, were killed by illegals. And they said the same thing. As soon as the government found out they were illegal, it became, like, Let's sort of leave it alone. They got very, very little cooperation.
So you'll have to explain that to your viewers because why this would happen -- it wouldn't happen with me, believe me. And Mexico...
HANNITY: Let me...
TRUMP: Go ahead.
HANNITY: I'm not trying to interrupt you. I want to go to the broader question here, though. And one of your major criticisms of your fellow candidates in the Republican Party is pretty much they're career politicians. They've been timid, weak and ineffective.
TRUMP: They are.
HANNITY: When you look at the major issues that our next president will have -- getting jobs for Americans, the debt, the deficit, health care, immigration, all -- education, all of these issues -- national security, which is huge, what -- where are you different?
HANNITY: How will you...
TRUMP: Sean, trade.
HANNITY: ... govern differently? In other words, how would you deal with the economy and national security? Go ahead.
TRUMP: Sean, I'm going to bring trade back into the country. Nobody's going to do it like me. In fact, a rival network of yours -- I won't mention the name, but they did a very big poll, and I kill everybody double and triple on things like trade and economics, anything having to do with financial, bringing jobs back. And leadership. I won on leadership by a long shot.
You have to bring trade back in. You have to bring our jobs back from China, and so many other places, including, by the way, Mexico. You know, Ford is building a $2.5 billion plant in Mexico right now. Tennessee just lost a big, beautiful auto plant from a German manufacturer, car manufacturer, going to Mexico. It's going to go instead of Tennessee. Tennessee expected to get it. They're not getting it.
We have -- we need these plants built in the United States. We need the jobs here. And nobody can do that like I can do that. I mean, I understand. That's what I do. That's why when everyone looked at my financials that came out today, they were stunned. I'm a private person...
HANNITY: I wasn't stunned. I knew you were a billionaire. But in -- can you balance our budget? Can you save Social Security? Can you get 50 million Americans in poverty and 46 million Americans on food stamps -- can you get them all jobs? Do you -- how quickly would you be able to turn that around?
TRUMP: I think very quickly. First of all, I want to save Social Security without the cuts. I'm the only one that can do it because I'm going to bring the jobs back. I'm going to bring money back.
And you know, one of the things I point out is that you have to have an ability to do that. Jeb Bush is not going to be able to negotiate with China. These guys are killers in China. They take advantage of us with their manipulation of the currency, so many other things. Jeb Bush, Sean, is not going to be able to bring jobs back. That I can tell you right now.
I will, and I'll bring them back big-league. We will have a great, great -- look at our -- our gross -- our GDP last quarter was negative! You don't see that! You look at China, where they go up 7 or 8 percent, and they're like -- they consider themselves a failure, which is what happens.
HANNITY: Here's my question...
TRUMP: I mean, they went up 7 percent. We went -- Sean, we went negative! That means we're getting smaller.
HANNITY: Well, that means if we have another quarter of negative growth, that's called a recession. I want to...
TRUMP: And by the way, with more people. Sean, with more people.
HANNITY: Good point.
TRUMP: We're getting smaller, but we have more people.
HANNITY: How -- in your consciousness, in your thought process, and when you were contemplating this run -- you see 93 million Americans out of the labor force, 50 million in poverty, 46 million on food stamps -- how important are those people to you because, you know, you're a billionaire...
HANNITY: ... financial statement today. How important are those Americans that are struggling and -- just to survive?
TRUMP: Very important to me. You look at the labor force, it's ridiculous. They look for a job. You know, the statistics are totally -- I don't know if they're done for some politician. I don't know when this started. But you look for job, you can't find one, you give up looking for a job, which people have given up. They're great people. They want to work. They want to make good money, and they can't find a job. They're essentially -- for statistical purposes, they're considered employed. So the number doesn't reflect -- you know, somebody actually last week said we have a 40 percent unemployment.
So I've been saying 19 to 21 percent. But somebody actually came out last week and said we have a 40 percent, and they might very well be right. Our country is suffering! We're going down. We have people that are incompetent doing it. And If you have Hillary Clinton or Jeb Bush, it's going to be more of the same. And we're not going to have a country left anymore.