South Lawn

5:21 P.M. EST

Q    If China starts arming Russia in Ukraine, what are you going to do?

THE PRESIDENT:  You think I’d tell you if I — if they did, you think I’d announce it ahead of time?

Q    Well, that would be bad, right?

Q    Are you worried that China is going to partner with Russia in this war?

THE PRESIDENT:  Say again?

Q    Are you worried that China will side with Russia in this war?

THE PRESIDENT:  There’s no evidence of that so far. 

And, by the way, I had a long conversation with Xi about this in the summer.  And I said, “Look, this is not a threat.  It’s just a statement.  When, in fact, Europeans saw what was happening, and Americans saw what’s happening in Russia — in Europe, guess what?  Six hundred corporations pulled out.  They left.  They didn’t want to be associated.”  I said, “You told me that the future of China rests on investment from the Western world.  And that matters.”  I said, “I’d just keep on eye that.” 

There’s no evidence he’s done it yet.

Q    What did you tell Zelenskyy in Kyiv about the possibility of providing F-16s?

THE PRESIDENT:  Well, that’s a private discussion.

Q    But are you open to it?  Are you open to it, sir?

Q    Will you go to East Palestine, Ohio?  Are you planning to travel to East Palestine, Ohio?

THE PRESIDENT:  This time, I’m not.  I was — I did a whole video — I mean — you know, the — what the hell — on —

Q    Zoom?

THE PRESIDENT:  Zoom!  Zoom.  All I can hear every time I think of Zoom is that song of my generation, “Who’s Zoomin’ Who?”

Q    Sir —

Q    Have you —

THE PRESIDENT:  Guys, wait, wait, wait.  Let me answer the question.

The answer is that I — I had a long meeting with my team as to what they’re doing.  You know, we were there two hours after the train went down.  Two hours.  I’ve spoken with every single major figure in both the Uni- — in both Pennsylvania and in O- — and in Ohio.

And so, the idea that we’re not engaged is just simply not — not there.  And, initially, there was not a request for me to go out, even before I was heading over to Kyiv.

So, I’m keeping very close tabs on it.  We’re doing all we can.

5:24 P.M. EST

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