President Trump departs Austin after tour of Apple manufacturing facility

News

AUSTIN (KXAN) — President Trump is visiting Austin Wednesday to tour an Apple manufacturing facility, Flex, where the company is creating its new line of Mac Pro computers.

Follow the live blog below for updates throughout the day.

Background

Live Blog

4:55 p.m.

Pres. Trump has re-boarded Air Force One and is ready for departure back to Washington, D.C.

4:47 p.m.

CapMetro says residents should expect travel delays due to the visit.

3:50 p.m.

While touring the facility, Trump stopped to answer questions and give comments, touching upon the reason for his trip and also fielding questions about his impeachment inquiry.

“Anybody thank follows my campaign knows I always talk about Apple. That I want to see Apple building plants in the United States, and that’s what’s happening,” said Trump.

When asked about Wednesday’s Sondland testimony during his impeachment hearings, Trump said, “I want nothing. I want nothing. Let me tell you it’s a hoax and it’s a disgrace, it’s an embarrassment to our country. Nancy Pelosi has done a terrible job as the Democrat speaker that’s done so little and she’s totally incompetent.”

Trump also took aim at the press, calling the media “phony” and “dishonest.”

“Most of them we have some fine people, some fine journalistic reporters and companies, but most of them are fake and phony. CNN, ABC, CBS, The Washington Post, The New York Times — these are fake.”

He ended his tirade against the press by saying they should be “ashamed of themselves.”

3:33 p.m.

2:41 p.m.

Pres. Trump has arrived at Apple. Below, employees are continuing working amid the commotion.

2:05 p.m.

Pres. Donald Trump steps off of Air Force One (KXAN/Erin Cargile)

1:47 p.m.

Air Force One has landed in Austin.

1:28 p.m.

Media await Air Force One’s landing in Austin (KXAN/Erin Cargile)

1:15 p.m.

Protesters hit Donald Trump pinata as they await his Austin arrival.

(KXAN/Kaitlyn Karmout)

1:08 p.m.

Austin Police Department confirms that a protester was arrested, the first so far. According to an APD’s Lt. Nisula, the person wouldn’t get out of the median and was disrupting traffic. They were taken to Travis Co. Jail.

12:41 p.m.

12:15 p.m.

A number of people were invited to watch as President Trump lands in Austin. Here’s what they told KXAN’s Erin Cargile as they waited:

12:05 p.m.

KXAN crews posted near Flex, the manufacturer President Trump is visiting Tuesday, say supporters and counter-protesters are gathering nearby.

Indivisible Austin is holding a “Say NO to Trump in Austin” protest, while Trump Victory is hosting an anti-impeachment, counter-protest event called “Stop the Madness!”

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  • Trump Victory Trump supporters (KXAN Photo/Kaitlyn Karmout)
  • Trump Victory Trump supporters (KXAN Photo/Kaitlyn Karmout)
  • Trump Victory Trump supporters (KXAN Photo/Kaitlyn Karmout)

11:15 p.m.

President Trump spoke briefly about his trip to Austin before heading to Air Force One. He said “Apple is opening a fantastic facility — they’re spending a tremendous amount of money.”

On Wednesday Apple announced the groundbreaking for its new campus in Austin, which will open in 2022. It’s set to house about 5,000 employees with plans to expand to 15,000.

“I’ve been asking [Apple CEO] Tim Cook from the day I got elected from the campaign, I’ve been asking Tim Cook to, if they would, we want to see Apple build here, that way they have no tariffs — there’s no tariffs. When companies come to our country and they build, there’s no tariffs,” Trump continued.

Trump said his administration is continuing to talk with China related to tariffs.

“China wants to make a deal,” Trump said. The question is, do I want to make a deal? Because I like what’s happening right now.”

11:10 a.m.

The KXAN crew is set up at Austin Bergstrom International Airport ahead of President Donald Trump’s arrival in Austin Wednesday afternoon. They and their gear had to go through security sweeps.

KXAN’s Yoojin Cho and Nexstar Austin Bureau Reporter Steffi Lee will be among the press pool in the motorcade as the president heads to the Flex campus upon his arrival.

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