Trump: ‘I have great respect for the community’

President Trump spoke to reporters following a security briefing Thursday in New Jersey, where he is taking a two-week vacation. Many of Trump’s remarks during the  briefing triggered a flood of media attention and commentary. He intensified his already  hostile remarks about the current conflict with North Korea and claimed he wanted to “thank” Russian President Putin for expelling 755 U.S. diplomatic employees “because we’re trying to cut down on payroll.” Somewhat lost in the exchange was his response to a reporter who asked, “Why did you decide to announce the transgender ban reversal a couple of weeks ago?  And are you betraying a community that you pledged to support?”

According to a White House transcript, here’s how President Trump responded:

“No, no.  Look, I have great respect for the community.  I think I have great support — or I’ve had great support from that community.  I got a lot of votes.  But the transgender — the military is working on it now.  They’re doing the work.  It’s been a very difficult situation.  And I think I’m doing a lot of people a favor by coming out and just saying it.  As you know, it’s been a very complicated issue for the military.  It’s been a very confusing issue for the military.  And I think I’m doing the military a great favor.”

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