Trump says he'll cut off foreign aid to countries that send 'not their best' people

  • President Trump says he wants to cut off foreign aid to countries that "abuse" the United States.
  • "I'm going to go very shortly for authorization that when countries abuse us by sending their people up — not their best — we're not going to give any more aid to those countries," Trump says.
  • He says the proposal is a "responsible, common-sense approach that all lawmakers should embrace, Democrats and Republicans."

President Donald Trump said Tuesday he wants to cut off aid to countries that "abuse" the United States by sending "not their best" people to its border, describing the proposal as a bipartisan approach.

"We want to end the border crisis by finally giving us the legal authorities and the resources to detain and remove illegal immigrant families all together and bring them back to their country," Trump told the National Federation of Independent Businesses' 75th anniversary event in Washington.

"Now think of all that aid that we give to some of these countries," he said. "Well, I'm going to go very shortly for authorization that when countries abuse us by sending their people up — not their best — we're not going to give any more aid to those countries."

Following applause from the crowd, he added: "Why the hell should we? This is a responsible, common-sense approach that all lawmakers should embrace, Democrats and Republicans."

The White House did not immediately respond to CNBC's request for comment on Trump's remarks.

Trump's proposal came amid a wide-ranging speech in which he defended his administration's "zero-tolerance" policy on prosecuting illegal entrants to the U.S.

Trump defended the administration's policy, which has led to the separation of nearly 2,000 migrant children from their families between April 19 and the end of May, according to a Department of Homeland Security tally.

The speech marked Trump's latest threat to rescind foreign aid for another country.

Trump had previously suggested that the U.S. could stop sending aid to Honduras following news reports that a "caravan" of asylum-seeking migrants from that country was traveling to the U.S.-Mexico border.

He had also hinted in December that U.N. member states that vote against U.S. interests could have their aid cut.

"We're watching" the votes of "nations that take our money and then they vote against us at the Security Council," Trump said at the time.