Sarah Sanders on Russia sanctions bill: Admin is 'supportive of where legislation is now'

New White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders joins "This Week" for an exclusive interview.
9:25 | 07/23/17

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Transcript for Sarah Sanders on Russia sanctions bill: Admin is 'supportive of where legislation is now'
Jay sekulow, thank you for your time. Let's move on to the newly appointed press secretary Sarah Sanders. Congratulations on the new job. Thank you. When you came to work on Friday, is it fair to say you had no idea you would be press secretary at the end of the day. I certainly don't think that was part of the original plan waking up and getting to work on Friday. I'm honored to be here and continue to be part of the president's team and continue to get his message out there and honored to do it. I wonder how you see your role. Sean spicer, your predecessor, seemed to get hammered from both sides. The president complained he wasn't tough enough. The press complained he wasn't transparent or truthful enough. How will you strike a balance? I think if the press is attacking you, you're doing something right. I think Sean did a great job. Very loyal. I'm looking forward to being part of the president's team to continue pushing out his message. We want to talk about jobs and health care. How we can make America great again. That's our focus. I want to ask you the same question Jon Karl asked Sean spicer. Do you promise to try the always tell the truth from that podium? Certainly. I have three young kids. I want to go home and be able to look them in the eye every day. That's far more important to me to have that. The highest level of honesty and integrity. I want to do that in every single thing I do. This is an extension of me being able to do that. Let's move on to the big issue. The house and senate seemed to come the agreement on a bill with tough sanctions for Russia. It restricting the president's ability to lift those sanctions and add sanctions for Iran and North Korea. Will the president sign that bill? The administration is supportive of being tough on Russia. The original piece of ledge slags was poorly written. We were able to work with the house and senate. The administration is happy with the ability to do that and make those changes that were necessary. We support where the legislation is now and will continue to work with the house and senate to put those tough sanctions in place on Russia. Until the situation in Ukraine is fully resolved. The president will sign that bill. That's news right there. To the attorney general, Jeff sessions. The president, "The New York Times" interview was very tough on the attorney general this week. Said he never would have pointed him has he known he was going to recuse himself. Said it was unfair to the president. A new issue in "The Washington post" over the the weekend. An intelligence intercept shows the attorney general did talk to the Russian ambassador about the campaign. The president responded in a tweet. A new sbel general leak from the Amazon Washington post. This time against Jeff sessions. These illegal leak must stop. That appears to be a confirmation that he was talking to the Russian ambassador about the campaign. I disagree. The president's point is there's a real problem with leakses. Whether they are actual leaks or not. There's an issue that there are stories that are being leaked out of the intelligence community. We have had over 60 leaks in the first six months from the intelligence community. When the other administrations previous to us were in the single digits after the entire time. This is a real problem. People are putting our national security at risk. I think that is one of the most undertold stories so far in the first six months of this administration. There's a ton of focus on what I like to call Russia fever. Which is total madeup story about the president trying to -- take away the legitimacy of his victory in November. And we need to focus on these leaks. This is the only illegal thing taking place. It's a serious problem. Art of what feeds the the fever is the fact that the president and his associates have not been straight about exactly what happened. In fact, the attorney general first said he never had a meeting with Russians. He revised than. Said he never talked about the campaign. Now you have a new sper September that says he did talk about the the campaign. I know you're upset about the leak. If it is indeed true is that okay with the president? I'm not going to comment on an alleged illegal leak. If we're going to talk about issues with Russia, and I think that we certainly should, one of the first places we should look at the 500,000 dollars that bill Clinton took from Russians when Hillary Clinton was secretary of state. Hay should ask for that money back. I think that's where the focus should be. The media loves to talk about it only when it comes to president trump. They've been doing it for almost a year. They've come up with nothing when there's real issues with some of the activities that the Democrats took place in. You know that's not true. For in months, you, the president, his team denied any contact with the Russians. In the last week, that's when these contacts have been revealed. That's why don Jr. And Jared Kushner are appearing this week. This is not a made-up story from the press. I want to focus on the attorney general as well. You have said the president has confidence many the attorney general. Yet in that interview with "The New York Times" he said he wouldn't have appointed him. How do you reconcile those two statements? Tjts president knows the attorney general is trying hard. He appreciates that. At the same time, he's disappointed he chose to recuse himself. I don't think that is inconsistent or hard to understand. That there would be frustration with that. And the president is still frustrated? Certainly. But I think, again, he's mostly frustrated with the overall process. There was a "Wall Street journal" poll that showed the top three issues are immigration, health care, and jobs. The top three issues that the media cares about are Russia, Russia, and Russia. There's 15 times more coverage on Russia than the three big issues that Americans care about. That's the exact definition of Russia fever and I think why people are so frustrated with Washington. And one of the reasons Donald Trump became president in the first place. You have the complete opposite idea of what Americans care about. Donald Trump tapped into it. He's had success in those areas. The health care bill stalled this week. I want to ask about that. Let me make the point as well we have never before seen a intelligence community convene that a foreign government affected the election. Yesterday, the president was speaking on the "U.S.S. Gerald Ford" and he chose to make a pitch on the ship to assembled seamen. So call that congressman. Call that senator, and make sure you get it. And by the way, you can also call those senators to make sure you get health care. It raised a lot of eyebrows. Including Ben Rhodes. He said this is a human deal. Obamas or bushes would never have done this. Vie rate ISES the norms separating military and -- why does the president believe it was appropriate to make a political pitch like that in this forum? The president is committed to repealing and replacing Obamacare. We have a system that's completely collapsing. We have to make a major shift. Insax not an option. The president was making that clear yesterday and speaking to not just the people in the room but the American people. What does he want the senate to do this week? It sure seems like repeal and replace has died? Does he want them to repeal owe ma kair and replace it at the same time? We have said many times our preference is repeal and replace. We have a system that is not sustainable. We have to lower premiums. We have to create better care. We have to start doing that right now. On that, the president spoke about health care in a "New York Times" interview. A 21-year-old could get insurance for $12 a year. Let's listen. You're 21 years old. You start working. And you're paying $12 a year for insurance. And by the time you're 70, you get a nice plan. Where is it possible under the president's plan to buy insurance for $12 a year. You promised to go back and get the answer. What is the answer? I haven't had a chance to do that yet, George. I promise to do it before the next briefing. You have never heard of a $1 a year insurance plan, have you? I haven't spent a lot of time studying insurance plans across the board. Certainly not for a 21-year-old. It's been a long time since I was21. But, if I could get a dhr 12 LAN, I think I would be on board with that. Sarah Sanders, thank you for your time. Thank you, George. Next up, chuck Schumer.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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