Speed Reads

off script

Trump press conference on medical bills devolves into call for John Kerry to be prosecuted

President Trump stepped before reporters on Thursday to speak about ending surprise medical bills — and before long was calling for the prosecution of former Secretary of State John Kerry.

Trump delivered remarks from the White House as part of a new push to "hold insurance companies and hospitals totally accountable" for surprise medical billing, but he took questions on a variety of topics, including Iran. In response to one question, Trump called out Kerry and claimed he is in violation of the Logan Act, which prevents unauthorized people from negotiating with foreign governments the U.S. has a dispute with.

Kerry, Trump claimed, speaks to Iran "a lot" and tells them "not to call" the White House.

"Frankly, he should be prosecuted on that, but my people don't want to do anything," Trump said. "Only the Democrats want to do that kind of stuff."

Trump had previously criticized Kerry after he said in September that he met with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif "three or four times" since he left office, The Washington Post reports. A spokesperson for Kerry on Thursday said that "everything President Trump said today is simply wrong, end of story," per CNN's Jim Acosta. "He's wrong about the facts, wrong about the law, and sadly he's been wrong about how to use diplomacy to keep America safe." Brendan Morrow