A viral transcript of President Donald Trump's phone call with the Australian prime minister provoked a host of reactions on social media, with some calling the conversation bizarre and others saying media outlets had completely fabricated it.
The conversation reportedly took place in January and was supposed to last an hour, though some say that Trump hung up on Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull after 25 minutes, reports The Washington Post.
Turnbull urged Trump to follow through and keep faith on a deal struck by former President Barack Obama in which as many as 1,250 refugees in Australia would be sent to the U.S., while South American refugees would be resettled in Australia, notes BuzzFeed News.
"This is going to kill me," Trump told Turnbull at the time, according to The Washington Post's transcript. "I am the world’s greatest person that does not want to let people into the country. And now I am agreeing to take 2,000 people and I agree I can vet them, but that puts me in a bad position. It makes me look so bad and I have only been here a week."
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When the Australian leader mentioned to Trump that his country holds people in detentions in Nauru and an island in Papua New Guinea when they attempt to enter the country in boats without proper paperwork, Trump said it was "a good idea" that the U.S. should implement before telling Turnbull, "You are worse than I am."
"What is the thing with boats?" Trump asked, when Turnbull said Australia does not accept those who come by boat. "Why do you discriminate against boats?"
Trump also told Turnbull about his massive underdog win in the presidential election in November 2016, saying "stupid deals" that treat the U.S. as a "dumping ground" are "how they lost the election."
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"I will just have to say that unfortunately I will have to live with what was said by Obama," Trump said. "I will say I hate it. Look, I spoke to Putin, Merkel, Abe of Japan, to France today, and this was my most unpleasant call because I will be honest with you. I hate taking these people [that Australia wants to send over]. I guarantee you they are bad. That is why they are in prison right now. They are not going to be wonderful people who go on to work for the local milk people."
Trump commented on the conversation when it was first reported -- though not in its entirety -- in February, tweeting that they had a "very civil conversation that FAKE NEWS media lied about."
Meanwhile, reactions among the public have varied, with one Twitter user calling the president and his supporters "bats**t insane" and another saying it "should be illegal" to publish conversations among world leaders.
"Is it possible someone was leaked a fake leak to make fools of the leakers?" mused another. "'Cause I'm thinkin' that looks fake."