From: “Ballhaus, Rebecca”
Date: January 26, 2018 at 9:40:26 AM GMT+1
Subject: [WHCA Print] [WH Pool] Travel pool 1 — SAP briefs on Potus speech
Pool is holding in the Intercontinental Hotel and just received a nearly nine-minute background briefing from a senior administration official on POTUS's speech to the World Economic Forum this afternoon. Some highlights. Please check all quotes against official transcript:- POTUS expected to hit three themes in today’s speech- #1: “America is open for business. ... Expect the president to talk about his policy reforms and accomplishments ... to make the U.S. a more competitive and attractive place.” This includes tax reform and regulatory reform efforts. POTUS will cite economic indicators including GDP, economic growth and stock market records.- #2: “America’s engagement with the world.” POTUS will discuss “America’s engagement in the global trading system” and its “commitment to free and open markets but on terms that are fair and reciprocal.” - #3: POTUS will “issue calls to the international community” to work on areas of common interest, such as combatting ISIS and the nuclear threat in North Korea. “You may pick up on sort of a theme, a vision of free and sovereign nations cooperating toward shared goals.” Q&A:Will POTUS cite new GDP numbers to be released Friday? Won’t get it until speech has concluded.Will POTUS mention any new trade deals? “You’ll have to wait and see ... Expect him to speak more broadly about our vision for trade.” Should POTUS comments on enforcing trade agreements be seen as a warning? “Less as a warning and more as an explanation of our commitment to the international trading system.” U.S. is “enforcing the rules of the road ... so all countries, all nations, all people can benefit.” What has prep been for the speech? “The president is always the guiding light and the source of ideas and of outlines and often of terms of phrase. As always ... it’s a group effort that involves a lot of policy and communications advisers.” Will POTUS’s tone be different from past addresses? “He’s approaching this as an opportunity to tout America’s economic successes.” The speech is “in part a way to articulate America’s engagement in the world.” Language on North Korea? “Nothing that I’m prepared to preview.” POTUS will call on international community to work with U.S. to combat nuclear threat.Speech should last about 15 minutes or so.We are rolling shortly to the WEF conference hall for POTUS’s first meeting of the day.