During an exclusive interview with Townhall from the White House Tuesday morning, President Trump warned his administration will take action if Democratic mayors and governors can't get crime under control.
"They are cities run by liberal Democrats," Trump said. "We're now looking at having to do something. You know, we have to be asked to go into a city like Chicago, which is so ridiculous where they had like, 68 shootings and 18 deaths over the weekend. It's not even comprehensible. Worse than Afghanistan, worse than any war zone."
"We're supposed to be asked. She is supposed to call, the mayor, Lightfoot, Lori, she's supposed to call and say 'we need your help.' We call her, 'would you like to have us come in,' and they don't want us and I say, 'what's going on?'" he continued.
During the interview, President Trump said police in cities like Chicago and New York City aren't allowed to do their jobs and are terrified of legal action.
"We are going to have to do something very comprehensive," he said. "It means sending people in. It means sending people in to clean it up... there's a point at which we're allowed to go in and that point is rapidly being reached... there's a point at which we will have to do it because we just have to do it for the good of the country."
When asked about what threshold must be met before federal action is taken, the president said "carnage and death" is his standard.
Over the past three weeks, New York City has seen a 358 percent increase in shootings over last year. The city council recently voted to remove $1 billion from the NYPD budget and eliminated the undercover crime unit.
"People better be very careful because you are going to have a backlash that is going to be incredible. People better be very careful what they wish for because the American people are not going to take it very much longer," he said.
This is part one of a multi-story series from this exclusive interview.
More from Townhall's Exclusive Interview: