Oct 11, 2017, 8:53 PM ET

Trump denies calling for increase in nuclear weapons


President Donald Trump shot down NBC News reports Wednesday that he called for a reported tenfold increase to the nation's nuclear arsenal during a national security meeting this summer and slammed the media for spreading what he calls “fake news.”

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During a meeting in the Oval Office with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Trump said it was “absolutely disgusting” that the press is able to “write whatever they want to write” and insisted the reporting that he had called for more nuclear weapons was not true.

"But I want modernization and I want total rehabilitation. It's got to be in tip-top shape,” he said.

Trump was responding to a report originally published by NBC News that detailed a Pentagon meeting in July which Trump allegedly said he wanted to boost the nation’s nuclear weapons supply by 10 times the current amount.

ABC News has reached out to NBC News for comment.

On air and on social media, NBC News stressed that they never reported that the president actually called for an increase -- just that he talked about it -- and that there are no plans to increase the nuclear arsenal.

Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis also refuted the claims in a statement released this afternoon.

“Recent reports that the president called for an increase in the U.S. nuclear arsenal are absolutely false. This kind of erroneous reporting is irresponsible."

Earlier in the day, Trump objected to the NBC News report on Twitter and suggested that the broadcaster's license should be challeged.

On July 20, Trump visited the Pentagon to meet with senior military officials to receive a briefing that touched on military readiness and operations around the world.

A U.S. official told ABC News that, as part of that meeting, there was a briefing related to the modernization of the nuclear triad that reaffirmed the budget prioritization for that effort. This official had no knowledge of the reported comments attributed to Trump about a tenfold increase in the nuclear arsenal.

According to another U.S. official, during that portion of the meeting the president asked several questions, including why the U.S. did not have as many nuclear weapons as the Russians.

News - Trump denies calling for increase in nuclear weapons

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  • JesterMarcus

    “Look, having nuclear — my uncle was a great professor and scientist and engineer, Dr. John Trump at MIT; good genes, very good genes, OK, very smart, the Wharton School of Finance, very good, very smart — you know, if you’re a conservative Republican, if I were a liberal, if, like, OK, if I ran as a liberal Democrat, they would say I’m one of the smartest people anywhere in the world — it’s true! — but when you’re a conservative Republican they try — oh, do they do a number — that’s why I always start off: Went to Wharton, was a good student, went there, went there, did this, built a fortune — you know I have to give my like credentials all the time, because we’re a little disadvantaged — but you look at the nuclear deal, the thing that really bothers me — it would have been so easy, and it’s not as important as these lives are — nuclear is powerful; my uncle explained that to me many, many years ago, the power and that was 35 years ago; he would explain the power of what’s going to happen and he was right, who would have thought? — but when you look at what’s going on with the four prisoners — now it used to be three, now it’s four — but when it was three and even now, I would have said it’s all in the messenger; fellas, and it is fellas because, you know, they don’t, they haven’t figured that the women are smarter right now than the men, so, you know, it’s gonna take them about another 150 years — but the Persians are great negotiators, the Iranians are great negotiators, so, and they, they just killed, they just killed us.” - Trump July 19th, 2016

  • GoodCoffee

    Rule #1. Trump Always Lies.
    Rule #2. If unsure if Trump is telling the truth or not, refer back to rule #1

  • Pologize3

    But its each local station that has the broadcast license. Not possible to take them away, Donald.

  • inonepeice

    Trump denies calling for increase in nuclear weapons


    LIAR, the guy is obsessed with bigger and more in regard to everything, it's why he lies about crowd sizes, his wealth, etc... Of course he wants more nukes. But maybe he realized what a moron it made him look like so he calls it fake news. Just another day in Trump world.

  • Prophet With Honor

    More, I want MORE! I'm STILL not satisfied!

  • fmd160

    its “absolutely disgusting” that Trump is able to “write whatever he wants to write”

  • 20 Yr Retired Military

    Trillions of $$ for more nukes
    Billions of $$ for a huge military
    Lower taxes....

    uhh huh...

  • @ Clown Parade

    This guy has said and repeated that the rising stock market is bringing down the national debt. We've yet to see a realistic or factual thought from this man. Only turmoil and bluster.

  • ruelph

    An expert on CNN stated today (10/12/17) that if JFK had conducted himself during the missile crisis the way Trump is conducting himself in dealing with foreign affairs, most arguably many of us would not be around today.

  • Trumpy the Clown

    Trump's mind is deteriorating right in front of the world.

    Trump vented to his longtime security chief, Keith Schiller, “I hate everyone in the White House! There are a few exceptions, but I hate them!”

  • mollydtt


    If you are going to say something really nuts, don't do it while you are the president.


    If you have skeletons in your closet, don't run for public office, especially for president.

    (That Russia compromise, whatever it is, WILL be discovered and made public.)

    P.S. the half life for plutonium is 24,100 years, Donald. We don't NEED more nukes, (I realize that Trump is dying to use them, but, the only thing that will survive Donald Trump's "fun" will be roaches and nutsedge.)

  • Wowza

    The moron tweeted it himself!

    Dec 22, 2016 11:50:30 AM The United States must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes

  • PerchLady

    "On air and on social media, NBC News stressed that they never reported
    that the president actually called for an increase -- just that he
    talked about it -- and that there are no plans to increase the nuclear

    Trump has demonstrated his lack of ability to read entire sentences but tends to extract only the words that catch his attention. He also seems to twist the words, losing the context. NBC specifically said it was "talked about", not "called for". Trump and perhaps many others didn't differentiate the distinct difference in the meaning of those two phrases. My advice (FWIW) is slow down your eyes, read the statements that cause your jaw to drop at least 3 times, pause for at least 30 seconds to mull over the exact words. Then see if your interpretation has changed... I have made the mistake of misreading something, fired off a comment only to go back and see where I misinterpreted the words because I was too quick to engage the keyboard before my brain. And I can also type "Mea culpa" when I recognize my error.

  • CivilDialog

    The number of "comments" that focus on bashing President Trump, claiming that he is seeking war are just FOOLISH!! Given the years of capitulation by President Obama, had shown many of our adversaries around the world that America could be disrespected and pushed around...This emboldened those adversaries and either caused many of the problems we face in the world today, or made existing problems worse! We need to have strong leadership and regain our standing in the world...Using strong dialog, followed by action is necessary and in many cases the only thing that our adversaries understand and respond to...

  • WhosVoice

    He may deny it but he did tweet it, twice. One time to an (MS)NBC show. We all know who the Liar in Thief is here.

  • jake

    After nearly 9 months in office Trump has complained more than 8 years with Obama plus 8 years of GW plus 8 years of Clinton in the White House. The man sure loves to complain about things. Wish he would work more and complain less.

  • Dr. Gurnicus Blanstonius

    Many people Trump is a psychologically unhinged personality who could use his power as president to either deliberately or inadvertently blunder into a nuclear world war.

    Trump supporters and hyper-partisan right wingers think he's brilliant.

    If the majority (including the world) are wrong, nothing happens. If they're right. What's the worse that could happen?

    Odd and unfortunate we're even having this conversation...

  • Martin Luther

    Trump said it was “absolutely disgusting” that the press is able to “write whatever they want to write”

    Executive Order #21: Only the president may say or write whatever they want, no matter how untrue. And Barack Obama sucks.

  • Dr. Gurnicus Blanstonius

    Think about all the people who were in the meeting about the US nuclear position.

    How many have come out and adamantly denied that the president's knee-jerk reaction was to increase the US nuclear arsenals? Who in their right mind would doubt he wanted that?

  • Dr. Gurnicus Blanstonius

    What's the point in electing a madman liar just to get your minority-supported agenda passed when your party, that controls congress can't pass anything?

    Why support a man who's sanity the world questions when the obvious risk is he could start a nuclear war? Whose own secretary of state calls a "moron"?

  • quinLee

    How long before a document or recording is leaked that proves that clown is lying.....again.
    We've seen this dot-to-dot pattern so many times that the picture is immediately obvious.

  • duckkdownn

    A year ago, Trump didn't know what the nuclear triad was. Today, he's an expert on all things nuclear. He must have an amazing IQ.

  • Sejal

    Trump is an eye for an eye vindictive man child. I'm sure if he could procure more nukes, he would.

  • sg

    Non-partisan Brookings Institute put out a report that Trump "most likely obstructed justice".

  • BD70

    Trump doesn't get yet that everything he says and does is recorded for the history books. He keeps flapping his lips with whatever is on his mind in front of reporters and then complains when they report it.

  • Steve in CT

    NBC does not have a "Broadcasting License". NBC is not controlled by the FCC. The independently owned stations that carry NBC Programming are licensed through the FCC. Trump doesn't get it. The FCC would have to yank the license of every NBC Affiliate. There are no grounds to do that. Trump is an ignorant being. The FCC doesn't regulate Cables programming either. That is how Fox News keeps from being shutdown as a Right Wing Propaganda machine.

  • GarfieldRocks

    Well, Donald, i guess that we can now blame NBC for all the worlds woes since they had the good sense to cancel your stupid show in August.

  • StormWizard

    He is doing this to himself. If he would shut his trap for more then 5 seconds , put the dang phone down and stop thinking out loud, then they wouldn't have anything to report. But nooooooo. he just keeps giving them more and more idiot quotes, dumb thoughts, and 3 am twisted dream tweets. Oh my God! Does nobody in the white house get this????