The president played golf and dined with the Japanese prime minister in Florida but still found time to tweet his indignation about an uncooperative legal system
The federal appeals court on Thursday blocked Trump’s travel ban which was against refugees and residents of seven Muslim-majority countries.
The president was left struggling to implement the “extreme vetting” of those entering the US which was a staple of his campaign for the White House, however thousands of refugees could be barred from US despite ruling on travel ban.
Tensions have also been raised in migrant communities around the US, over a series of raids carried out by Immigration and Customs Enforcement “Ice”.
Trump’s frustration was evident on Saturday morning, as he indulged with a typical 140-character burst on Twitter.
“Our legal system is broken!” he wrote, adding, with a citation “‘77% of refugees allowed into US since travel reprieve hail from seven suspect countries.’ (WT) SO DANGEROUS!”
On Air Force One on Friday, Trump told reporters he might issue a new executive order because “we need speed for reasons of security”.
He also said he was confident the administration would prevail in the courts on the original executive order, saying: “We will win that battle. The unfortunate part is that it takes time statutorily.”
A new order would allow the White House to implement the ban again while the legal fight was being waged over the first directive, which was issued in Trump’s first week in office.
A White House official told the Guardian: “We are reviewing every single option in the court system, including a supreme court appeal on the temporary restraining order, and are confident we will prevail on the merits of the case. Additionally, we are actively pursuing other executive orders that will keep our country safe from terrorism.”
The Ice raids were the first major immigration enforcement actions since Trump took office and signed an executive order which broadened the range of undocumented migrants considered to be priorities for deportation. Ice officials characterized the raids as “routine” and said many of those detained had criminal records.
Trump also addressed the subject of his promised wall on the US border with Mexico on Twitter on Saturday.
“I am reading that the great border WALL will cost more than the government originally thought,” he wrote, “but I have not gotten involved in the design or negotiations yet.”
“When I do, just like with the F-35 FighterJet or the Air Force One Program, price will come WAY DOWN!”
The president also faces persistent foreign policy challenges, particularly over allegations that the national security adviser, Mike Flynn, discussed sanctions relief with Russia’s ambassador to the US while Barack Obama was still president.
Officials including Vice-President Mike Pence have long denied that Flynn discussed sanctions with the ambassador, an allegation now reported by multiple outlets, based on a transcript of a call shared by intelligence sources. If true, Flynn’s actions would violate the Logan Act, an obscure 18th-century law that prevents private citizens from conducting negotiations with foreign governments.
Asked by reporters aboard Air Force One about the report, Trump said: “I don’t know about that. I haven’t seen it. What report is that? I haven’t seen that. I’ll look into that.”
Concerns over Trump’s ties to Russia have increased following what US intelligence agencies believe to have been an attempt by the Putin regime to influence the election on Trump’s behalf.
Trump, who has accepted such beliefs but has also said “I do respect Putin.”
When O’Reilly noted that Putin was “a killer”, Trump responded by saying: “We’ve got a lot of killers. What, do you think our country’s so innocent?”
That statement brought condemnation from major figures in both parties, appalled that a president of the US would suggest moral equivalency between his country and an authoritarian regime.
On Saturday, Trump seemed to be achieving diplomatic success with the visit of Abe, whom he described as “a friend”. The two men had a “very, very good bond and chemistry”, Trump said at a press conference at the White House on Friday.
The Abe visit represented the beginning of a busy spell of diplomacy for Trump, in which he will host the Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau, and Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.
Trudeau has been a vocal critic of Trump’s policies towards refugees. He also comes to Washington to meet a president who has mused openly about pulling out of Nafta, the free-trade agreement between the US, Canada and Mexico.
The Netanyahu visit may also produce fireworks. Although Trump has boasted about his ardent support of the state of Israel and campaigned on moving the US embassy there from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, he has changed his tone in recent days.
The president has wavered on the embassy move and, in an interview on Thursday with the Israeli newspaper Israel HaYom, suggested that Israeli settlements in the West Bank are not “good for peace”.