Transcript for The Briefing Room: President Trump meets with Kanye West
And. And welcome to the briefing. On this Thursday afternoon I'm Devin Dwyer ABC news in Washington drama White House correspondent terror pulmonary great to have you with us terra king I don't wild day you didn't get a hug from Kanye West and somebody did stay tune. The White House as hurricane Michael moves up the East Coast in that devastation becomes an interview this morning. President trot had a very unusual summit today with rapper Kanye West perhaps is most prominent African American supporter. We will get into that in just a second. Let's bring in our Jordan Phelps from the White House she's been tracking the news developments today Jordan I gotta say. This was a very hard he affair and age. A spectacle that I think you can really only comprehend if you see it. Yet there's never really been anything like this that I have seen DeVon and I've talked to a lot of more senior White House reporters. There have also seen nothing like this I the president at the end of this Frey exchanged a hug with Kanye West. And maybe get crazy turn of events economy even hugged aren't Jonathan Karl at the very end high it was profanity laced it why is a I loved faster broke fast between these two men. I it weighs at that maybe the most memorable quote was Kanye West saying that president trams make America great again hats. Are like a Superman cape to him it was just something truly remarkable and all of the reporters coming back from this. Just had this shell shocked. Look at coming back into the briefing round. I just completely. Astounded by what they had just witnessed eight in the Oval Office. Sorry turned service is safe to say we haven't seen anything like this in the Oval Office before we're seeing some of the pictures now but let's take a listen. To some of that extraordinary. Ten minute soliloquy. From Kanye West to Donald Trump Nicholas. And me like Superman. It's more important in Asia Pacific you know if anything that we bring jobs into America and that we grew behind. Brandish it would make them help. Education curriculum we don't. Part we have our promise. Look we can have power industry we can empower our factories we can bring not only but he thought sure we could bring. Fox cop. In Minnesota 83. With us. So as much as this was a spectacle terra really the president has tried to use Kanye a politically here to his advantage. And on the agenda at least there were some serious items that they hope to discuss and accomplish. Ray he seems to actually grew at him in terms of policy and a protectionist trade policy he had a lot of negative things to say about China he talked a lot about bringing jobs backs the US I listen reform as well prison reform right and that's that's. At his center on Jerry commissioners pet project but he seasoning of the president has taken on as while. I think at at the end the day bringing Kanye West on. As a political actor is maybe not the strong its move re now. Especially because. You know it's a known thing that he has been diagnosed with bipolar. And some people interpreted this as him taking advantage of a person is immensely L. Kanye West mentioned in his soliloquy that he was diagnosed with bipolar. And so you know what we saw what they spectacle we saw president come speechless for probably the first time in a long time. But you know some well might say that guy he was taking advantage of someone who is immensely and while it's. Lee is reality TV in the Oval Office which we can't turn away from made you know everybody is talking about it on social but what do you think should get the president terror why do this. Bottom line and this is our well it was supposed to be two it's intended to prison reform rain hat that was the spotlight that the spotlight. Power the celebrity president John knows that more than anyone. It was interesting when the beach boy is that mentioned today that. At present from July to help tried to help Whitney Houston new you know we suffered with what is rising problem at the White House language science music. Related lenses legislation on royalties related to this is streaming error that's partly why Kanye West is their Kid Rock was there to drain well. But Jordan Phelps this certainly also stoked a good bit of controversy. Around the president's schedule he was already. Greeted with some skepticism about traveling up to that campaign rally up in Pennsylvania last night in the middle. Of one of the strongest hurricanes to hit this country in decades and then yet. Today with in the aftermath of the storm on the crisis is still unfolding he's having this meeting. Yeah and seven this seems to be a case where president prompt simply clean helped himself. As you mentioned the president knows the power. A celebrity and and he's struggled as we know she'll. Gained celebrity endorsements act and now he's got Kanye West their he had hit rock this morning. And last night without rally I the president is taking a lot of flak for the fact that. All of these meetings and olives. This other. Programming is happening while one of the worst hurricanes add that this president will surely. Seat during his app presidents he is slamming United States and recovery efforts are jest out. Getting under way that is so. The president taking a lot of heat for this but the president defending the mail saying he couldn't let those thousands of people out that rally last night just waiting with him not showing up south. At we'll see how it continues to play out we're just at less than a month from the mid term south you can imagine Democrats warning that cuts in Matt's office. And let's bring in our very own chief White House correspondent Jonathan Karl who just joins us fly and in. Further briefing room session he was in the oval office for this extraordinary moment ask the president some questions and John. Everybody's talking about that big hug you got from Kanye West let's go pretty good. This is there are days I did that this was one of the stranger days we've had many many many strange days during the that the the trump era. Oh my god are actually show the hug there. That's I think. All sell a lot to guard. Those who has a lot of them room. Depths but you don't I I think that the most important question that I asked today and this was a day you're. I mean I asked the president he would re different events that I was in for. I asked him questions about about. Jamal could showed me the the Saudi journalist. I was disappear asked about the hurricane obviously asked about. The did the economy in the Federal Reserve. And asked about Kanye West of Atlanta but I think that in some ways. The question. They've set this all off was at the very end of the first event the president had today this was where he was signing the save our seas act. With Shelton whitehouse one and his. There wouldn't true trump nemesis in the in in in the senate. At the very end of that event I said Mr. President. Will you bring us in when you meet with Kanye. Because of us has to be closed to reporters it was so there was supposed to be closed. I mean as you know Devin the the meeting was not even on the president's schedule wasn't even listed as an off the record meeting it wasn't even listed as a closed meeting it was listed at all. And if you remember. When Kim Kardashian in came in. I think the president finally got a much more enthusiastic and I did what you mean that so David Herbert Berger who hugged who in their. Chaos. And what I think I'm playing I think I think kinda it was initiating all of this but problem. But we Kim Kardashian came in. You know several months ago. The the White House simply. Put out a photograph dated dated not bring the press and so I don't think that it was a given. That we were gonna was see this I think this was very much the president kind of calling an audible. And and maybe maybe I've got some of the blame or credit or something for that buy if they're critical is an item. If I could not optional add an entire want all by asking and anyway who who. But it was also mean the you know yet you saw it. I mean surreal that the I was trying to take Poole notes to describe what was going on. And to describe the soliloquy that we heard from Kanye West and I I I kind of basically summarized. Every sixth or seventh line I mean you know he had. He was talking about how four needed to make fly cars he was talking about. As experience with the DA does he was talking about doing away with the thirteenth amendment. He was talking about his. Make America great again hat and and that line and he said. That that is where he gets his power that is his Superman's cape. All I asked him by the way. Guys about the you know what would what Condit said about George W. Bush. In the aftermath of Katrina that he doesn't care about black people like civil what do you say to those that say this president doesn't care about black people. And that led to another soliloquy that that went on I think that that was where he. He came up with that lines its he if he doesn't look that we don't look good but. I don't know what to make of it all be I guess that's why you guys are here doing analysis on the briefing room maybe you can. Where we were just chewing on that aid in one does wonder what does the president get out of this before let's go to die at what want to put that tear it does seem that the president and his staff. They they do invoke Kanye West when talking about the African American community. They talk about than their low level of African American unemployment. Other economic indicators when talking about why black Americans black voters should be supporting this president. They constantly invoked con mis named it do you think they actually believe it doesn't have any. Any cred as a Gideon then many thing if you will. I mean I think did the president will come back to. Over and over again the unemployment rate the African American unemployment rate and you know you've heard the line is sedated and and it's actually. Largely true that it African American unemployment is is at a historic low. In this country of course the unemployment rate across the board. Is at a 49 year low. Are in terms of this I I I think that the White House staff. If they thought that this was really truly a way to reach out. And part of a strategy for the African American vote which by the way the president has almost none of what's let's be honest. They day they would have done more to kind of proactively put this out there but again this was not something that was scheduled to be before the cameras this was the president himself. Kind of calling on audible I could tell at times. He felt a little bit uncomfortable with with with Kanye aides soliloquy and he kept on coming back to to Jim Brown thought it Jim Brown's FL browns also are also there right yeah also. You know had very good you know will you get glowing words of praise. For Donald Trump. All right our own chief White House correspondent Jonathan Karl making the news once again this time with a hog. In the Oval Office that's at first I think for you John thank you I let her make an effort and then turn this into briefing room. We'll see you later as John mentioned one of the other big more serious stories of the day though is the fate of this prominent Saudi journalists who is also. Has a US permanent resident visa and Washington Post columnist. Jamal co Lucy. Who was. Scene last seen going into a Saudi consulate on last week in Turkey never came out again it's now turned into. In international scandal and a mystery about his fate. You see Jamal there are want to bring in. I want to bring in. Our earth our next essence our streets nuns who were from the committee to protect journalist who has been tracking the case. Mr. Mansour thank you so much you have been following this closely. What what's the latest that you're hearing on his status and is there any chance that he's still alive. We are hoping and praying that he's still alive them. And has fiancee a vote today that the big issue itself was a hole that you would see him again confident and contain those holds faded away. We know now that that is and justification joint investigation and agreed upon by. Turkey and started in the outbound this. However it's really important tool that in this found the going to be in government have given very independent information I want what happened time. And in many ways they have tried to do the candidates bonds on Monday though water I'm to his feet. And this is alarming in this woman who wins given that track record of that we've seen in the hopes found the when government detaining people against them from that win. Holding them in an undisclosed. Locations sometimes though opinions if you charge. No way I want to. I want him piano and ask you about that and I'm instruments sure. How much of a target. Was. Kershaw he as a journalist this is someone who has a record of being. Certainly critical of of the Saudi royal family of the Saudi Arabian government. But it does he have who had he been a target a long time prior to this. Incidents. There has been in a telephone calls the design and bureaucrats have to newest phone who trauma. He reported being threatened because. What he. From pro government government owned newspapers. Over the course of this community is actually what twins the Saudi own government's. I'm at some point he wanted to establish. TV station. I mean. That only less than mine in our artists and all of them to find done. I'm auto alliance found in India who he's if any join England censorship influence across the fusion. Poll indicated is that he had reported being. Wanted he had to his fiancee and we didn't output Hamm was his phone's. Calling and several people including advisors to. President of the gunman Terry V. Who now you cover from posted being what I intended to report didn't that he has been an urgently can. End to end mr. Mansour your book before we let you go. On that very point that he had been. Certainly. You had been warned had been threatened before there was some. In very agency reported in the Washington Post yesterday that the US intelligence services had. Some intercepts suggesting that he could be in danger. In Turkey that he that he he's through with Sid being targeted by the saudis potentially for murder. Do you think that the US had an obligation to warn him of this do you see anything here that the trump administration needs to do right now. Not just meeting every line and including nick who is fiance and his employer have said the US government including. Present from. And people in the administration State Department plans to connect competed. Have a role to play impression and that online society. There are other now bipartisan effort and to send that by Democrats than Republicans. Asking for a report. By the president on the them admits he act. About what happened to asking for recommendations of sanctions against the specific people who perpetrated tortoise than people might have been involved. But what happened to happen unless he that doesn't look high and vet the that is at least interest. Within Dominican. Congress. And that could or freshens to act on behalf. Of this Jonas school for the longest time acted as a voice for a lot of shown us some sense out of India up to sixteen talked count. Who've been held because of the walk. We need to be a voice for him as well and so that. Has at risk are not the most in pain. Archery fence or with the Committee to Protect Journalists getting the word out. Keeping the story jamarcus soaking in the news in the spotlight a very important one thank you for your work sir thank you for coming. To the briefing room. And as mr. out months who were mentioned there it has gotten the attention of congress. I take a listen to something that senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut said just a short time ago but what the US government needs to do. To help the case of this Washington Post columnist. If the United States new. That the saudis war attempting to abduct him out showed. It's certainly. Seems that we should have let him know. That his life or it will the very least his freedom was in danger. And again that's it that's a big gift I've seen these reports about what. What our intelligence services knew but I'm not sure why you engage him. Intelligence gathering if you are not going to use that information to try to save the life. An American. Residents there are some pretty serious questions that this administration has to answer for in the coming days. Has the attention of congress terror has attention the president presence of this morning he is hoping to get to the bottom of this. But he's in a bit of a tight spot here Saudi Arabia has been. 1 and vis central Middle East allies that he sought to court talks a lot about these business deals and today suggested. He's not ready to punish Saudi Arabia if in fact they are are culpable in this. Rice hasn't trump seems reluctant cigar hard line against Saudi Arabia. And he talked about the major weapons deal that it's so great for America that we're selling billions of weapons in Saudi Arabia he's also using them to apply pressure on Iran. And it's a defeat I assess and so we'd really sort of shifted towards according Saudi Arabia that's something that this new administration turn on pusher has invested in that he hasn't had a close relationship with one of the fifth crown prince and I've this is something that. That the administration made a priority you saw that lavish. His. We welcome your welcome exactly and any visited as it was the first country where his innings I get a heated he's reluctant to take a hard line but you know he's got to choose because he. Yet he will lose his credibility if he doesn't draw a line in the sand and follow. Earlier pickle for the administration it fascinating mystery and of course we still don't know. What has happened to jamarcus should be so stay tuned here ABC news. And of course the great reporting the Washington Post is doing a morning of their own and as well very important case are moving on now to another story that's creating a lot of headlines this one a private press conference in the Oval Office with president trump. Out of the ordinary for those of us who have covered the White House every once in awhile you get that audience with the president but I can't remember an instance that went like this one this is. We want to bring in now that he had new Z who writes for the new New York magazine she is join us now by phone she is one of the I journalists who recently got an audience with president trump what she calls and her new article with a near magazine a private press conference the president and let me add this was it was a meeting you had scheduled with the president talk about the fate if chief of staff John Kelly. And it was struck me as she really quite defensive. Of of Kelly and that you left there thinking he could be on the ropes now more than ever. Not light the meeting would not scheduled at all actually might the White House and earlier that day for a series of meetings and I'd say the leading candidate called back in by the Press Secretary there have to be standards and told that the president want it cheap meat could lead to live did not plan. I certainly would edged the people who having any kind of threat in cute discuss the article that reporting about John Kelly. And I certainly didn't anticipate out there having audience with vice president and Mike Mike Pompeo and you can step itself. And let's put up an excerpt from that we're seeing now on the screen for mere from your piece in the latest. Edition of course its online at New York magazine. And Olivia writes I knew. And if we can go back to the first slide there she said. The president she said. Dumb luck was the phrase that one administration use to explain Kelly's. Aides endurance in the administration the president can only focus is anger frustrations for so long before he moves on to the next thing. Ability grinder right that's the president's. Acceptance of John Kelly their air as his chief of staff is sort of just by eight I did dynamic in the White House right now that he sort of stuck with John Kelly because as and then and he has as you say are an apt. Yeah nice I think that's and it seemed like a place they dynamic here we're seeing any and perhaps. Perhaps that there are worried that outbid Q over the last. Your house. That is working Q did she credit maintaining a healthy relationship and deterring them altogether. They're all with a lot of stories about. Very White House officials to may be on their way out maybe have a that the president and how to. But opted tanked it story are not followed quickly by a firing her by her resignation. And I think part of the pregame. Sport that it beat the president even know his trademark raised here fired. It's sort of conflict hurt he did not like you. He did not like you fire people beach Condo or for matter hurting and that there are reluctantly in Britain forced. And I think that has a lot if you reply I'm Kelly is it's still around. Right because there's no one else to fire the chief of staff except the press brain and like a Big Brother that I can think we'll hitter into. Or saying that you know it's apparent to president rubles. Tell John Kerry a lead or will try to fire him and he showed that to work the next day your mind yet but I felt that the data storage should you're inspired you joining up to the office. But yet to sort an inquest into debt that. The president that note we'll call all the fire to cheap out because normally we rely and the chief of staff inspired other people. But we're seeing here supposing your sense Olivia that he east he is still dissatisfied. With John Kelly that if you had the gumption to fire him. That he wouldn't. It's difficult to say in the White House and chills bad things happen. It's difficult to predict. What will happen even if you had it's fairly date bursting couldn't say should. That in another administration perhaps would be thought enough to go lit I don't beat that you can really tell by happen until it's in right and even met. And if it only changed she still I think by a full airing try to predict whether or not John Kelly is. Along just world a the White House cut him firm. That the president has allegedly got into an ardent church each morning. And before we let you go on a that they are struck here and terror come win on this as well was just the number of characters from this administration all showing up. Actor Oval Office meeting this wasn't just you and the president in an impromptu but the secretary of state the vice president the Press Secretary. Nick Ayers bottom an unbelievable cast of characters in there on ran into Tuesday what was it Tuesday afternoon. He added it'd keep asking it very strained credit it circuits spell I can't read that it felt like every union at the ticket with its content. Where the stars are coming out you like at applaud your act. And UAL the doctor like intervention into doing this stuff if it's just like one person after the other coming in an extension. Incorporating them into our conversation and about how well things are going in how much everyone gets along and loved each other. He's done this many times over reporters not. Quiet on the same scale of that what you went through in some manner and say you know kind of typical impressing catches wind of the story and and thinks that he's a job and that he will empire problem in prior administrations the Bush Administration don't find out. They'll bring the sit down with a journal as China can't talk for hours everywhere but they always stood off the record and that. Why is you know that the beauty of your story was getting. Showing people that the spectacle an obvious is his name baker spectacle and bring in all those major players now. All of Bolivia's reporting is in her latest article for New York magazine my private Oval Office press conference would Donald Trump my hands John Kelly. And Mike Pompeo it is then it's eager to read many days so much for talent in here and join us on the briefing her. Trapping me. All right and before we move on today and a close up for the day some are pretty dramatic news over on Wall Street today after a nearly over 800 point drop. Over 3% loss yesterday and the Dow right now we're tracking. Close to another 500 point dip you see there just about 2% loss today on top of that. Terror the president has been bullying mean he is fed chief had different. Many allowing an. You pointed he's been saying he's not happy with them but he did admit today that he doesn't think he could fire. Drum Powell let's take a listen to the president on today's star power loss. What they where it's a correction that I think is caused by the Federal Reserve. With the interest rates the dollar has become very strong. Which. Frankly. People can debate whether or not they like a strong dollar and the dollar is very strong very powerful. Ari this dollar is strong unemployment is slow things are looking pretty good but obviously if you have looking at your 401K today. You'll likely wins. All right that's off presser in the briefing room today but follow our special coverage tomorrow big day 28 point primetime special V in the Lonnie and the First Lady 10:9 central time beyond us first exclusive network interviews. With the First Lady it's going to be a good show then. CS here tomorrow at the same time 3:30 eastern time in the briefing room for terror upon Maryann Ken Dwyer in Washington we'll see you next time.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.