On Saturday night, President Trump attended the Gridiron Club Dinner and delivered a monologue of jokes. There was the humiliation of his wife...
So many people have been leaving the White House. It’s actually been really exciting and invigorating ’cause you want new thoughts. So I like turnover. I like chaos. It is really good. Now, the question everybody keeps asking: Who’s going to be the next to leave, Steve Miller or Melania?
...and the insulting of Maxine Waters...
How about that one? Maxine Waters, ‘He must be impeached!’ That’s all she knows how to say, ‘He must be impeached!’ Impeached! ... But he’s done nothing wrong. Doesn’t matter, they say. What has he done wrong? ‘I don’t know! You got to be impeached!’ … And then I say ... I get in trouble for this, ‘She has to immediately, take an IQ test.’
But one area where Trump didn't joke was on the subject of North Korea. In his speech Trump managed to call himself a madman, claimed North Korea "called to talk," and single-handedly took credit for bringing North and South Korea together for the Olympics:
I won't rule out direct talks with Kim Jong Un. I just won't. As far as the risk of dealing with a madman is concerned, that's his problem, not mine. ... He must be a fine man. Do you think he's a fine man? ... Although, we did save the Olympics. President Moon gave us a lot of credit, said, 'It was—it was President Trump that made the Olympics successful because there were a lot of people that wanted to go into that stadium with the potential of a problem—a big problem—and he gave us all a lot of credit. He said, 'Without President Trump and his strong attitude they would have never called up and said, 'Hey, we'd love to be in the Olympics together.'
And that's true. ... Whether people want to hear it or not, they had a very successful Olympics. That was heading for disaster. They weren't selling tickets. ... It was heading for disaster and now we're talking. And they, by the way, called up a couple of days ago and said, 'We would like to talk.' And I said, 'So would we, but you have to de-nuke, you have to de-nuke.'
North Korea apparently has a different take after hearing Trump's remarks. A statement issued Sunday by North Korean Foreign Ministry said:
The U.S. is taking preposterous action by continuing to trumpet an insistence that it will not have dialogue unless a right condition is met and that it will keep watching if we have intention to abandon nuclear weapons and missiles and so on.
The U.S., that was terrified at the rapid development of our nuclear force and has continued to knock the door of dialogue, now feigns an indifference and advances this or that precondition. Not being content with it, it insists that it will have dialogue only for making the DPRK abandon nuclear weapons and persist in 'maximum pressure' until complete denuclearization is realized.
This is really more than ridiculous.
It's not surprising people are having trouble believing this "call" actually happened.
Source with knowledge of the NKorea-US situation: Despite Trump's weekend comments, "There was no call" from NKorea. "There was no call."— Michelle Kosinski (@MichLKosinski) March 5, 2018
Where did this sudden call from North Korea come from? Who was handling it? What the hell is Trump talking about, as if we ever know?— Karen Walz (@khwalz) March 4, 2018
@realDonaldTrump IS A LIAR. @POTUS in his speech at the Gridiron Club tonight "LIED THAT" North Korea had “called up” and asked to begin talks but that he responded with “you have to denuke” first. ITS TIME WE CALL IT WHAT IT IS. DONALD TRUMP IS A LIAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!— NeverTrump (@omolaradavis) March 4, 2018
...first of all @realDonaldTrump...North Korea did not call you. You know it...we know it. As for your comment...de-nuke. That will never happen. Kim sees you as an unhinged madman. Lately...most Americans would agree including those just 20’ from your office.— YES...I’m pissed off. (@brianha34962191) March 5, 2018
Jake Tapper wanted more information about what Trump meant by "denuking":
POTUS in his speech at the Gridiron Club tonight said North Korea had “called up” and asked to begin talks but that he responded with “you have to denuke” first. Asking for more information as to what he meant —— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) March 4, 2018
People had doubts there would be a legitimate answer:
I wonder was this a call that took place in trumps head, between two of his personalities.— Robin Peters (@RobinPe89308539) March 4, 2018
In my whole life, I have NEVER thought, that we could be in such danger by a President, like we are right now!— Leslie Carter (@Campkpr) March 4, 2018
Ben H. channeled his inner Trump so we could all understand how this call took place:
So there I was, grabbing a cheeseburger at the turn and brrrring brrring my phone goes off. Little rocket man was calling me to chat. I told him to denuke first so I could make it to the 10th tee. Foreign policy is easy! So much winning! MAGA! I had a good (great) round today!— Ben H (@milesnotyears) March 4, 2018