White House

Trump warns Venezuela with new sanctions, won’t rule out military action

Trump spoke in a joint Rose Garden press conference with new Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro

President Donald Trump (R) and Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro (L) shake hands during a joint news conference at the Rose Garden of the White House March 19, 2019 in Washington, DC. President Trump is hosting President Bolsonaro for a visit and bilateral talks at the White House today. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he may impose new strict sanctions on Venezuela in another attempt to force President Nićolas Maduro from office.

“I’m not being told any specific time,” Trump said on how long Maduro might hold on. But he did predict a “change” is ahead.

Trump’s remarks came during a joint Rose Garden press conference with new Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who is known as the “Trump of the Tropics” back home for his populist style and policies.

[Trump overshadows Brazilian president’s visit by attacking Kellyanne Conway’s husband]

“We can go a lot tougher if we need to do that,” Trump said of new possible sanctions against Venezuela.

Bolsonaro did not commit to allowing the U.S. or international forces to mass along his border with Venezuela — but he also did not rule it out.

The two countries are finalizing a deal to allow U.S. access to a rocket launch facility in Brazil.

Trump announced at the press conference that he will give Brazil major non-NATO ally status. He also indicated he will discuss alliance membership for the South American powerhouse with other NATO members.

Trump also announced he will support Brazil for membership in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development “in honor” of his Brazilian counterpart.

[‘I was never a fan of John McCain,’ Trump again goes after the late Senator]

Watch: Trump: ‘I was never a fan of John McCain and I never will be’

The president was also asked about domestic issues, including some he highlighted online Tuesday morning. 

Trump railed against social media outfits like Facebook and Twitter, as well as American television networks, saying they all have become too left-leaning.

“It’s hard to believe that we win,” he said of Republicans. “It’s a very, very dangerous situation.”

As he did on Twitter earlier in the day, the U.S. president said he intends to examine what he sees as a major problem. Trump was responding to Facebook’s decision to temporarily ban his social media manager Dan Scavino.

Trump also said he disagrees with some 2020 Democratic candidates who have suggested replacing the Electoral College with a popular vote-based presidential election format.

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