Trump denies Boeing comments were retribution

President-elect Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpGrassroots America shows the people support Donald Trump Trump speaks to rebel Libyan general attacking Tripoli Dem lawmaker: Mueller report shows 'substantial body of evidence' on obstruction MORE says his attack on Boeing over the cost of the new Air Force One had nothing to do with Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg’s criticisms of his trade policies.

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Asked on NBC's "Today" whether his comments came with retribution in mind, Trump replied: “Well only the planes, because I didn’t see an article where he was critical of trade policies, and my trade policies are going to be terrific."

A Tuesday op-ed in the Chicago-Tribune included comments from Muilenburg about the election and “apprehension about free and fair trade.” 

"If we do not lead when it comes to writing these rules, our competitors will write them for us," Muilenburg is quoted as saying.

Shortly after the op-ed was published, Trump tweeted about the cost of the new Air Force One, which is contracted out to Boeing. 

Trump said Wednesday that “Boeing is going to be a tremendous beneficiary of” lower taxes. 

“I believe in free trade, but I don’t believe in stupid trade,” Trump added. “And stupid trade is when our companies all move out of our country, fire their workers, and then come back in, Matt, and sell their product back in with no retribution.”