At a press conference at the G7 Summit in Charlevoix, Canada, on Saturday, President Donald Trump took a jab at CNN, calling it “fake news.”
When a reporter, during the press briefing asked Trump about the growing tensions between him and the other leaders at the summit, Trump asked, “Who are you with, out of curiosity?” When the reporter said that he was from CNN, the president said, “I figured. Fake News CNN. The worst.”
Trump, however, answered the reporter’s question. He firmly denied the G7 meeting had been contentious.
The president said that the level of the relationship with the G7 leaders “is a 10.”
“We have a great relationship. Angela and Emmanuel and Justin. I would say the relationship is a 10,” he said, referring to leaders from Germany, France, and Canada, respectively.
He added that his talks with fellow G7 leaders on trade had been “extremely productive” and that he would prefer a tariff-free world if other countries would only treat the United States fairly.
“It’s going to stop. Or we’ll stop trading with them. And that’s a very profitable answer if we have to do it,” Trump said. He added that the U.S. is like the piggy bank that everybody’s robbing. “And that ends,” he said, according to a report by The New York Times.
President Trump said that he expects other nations to provide fair market access to American exports. He added that the U.S. will take the necessary steps to protect industry and workers from unfair practices. “We’re getting them worked out, slowly but surely,” he said.
Trump said his dealings with other G7 leaders were cordial and that he does not blame them for trade deficit that the U.S. is suffering. Trump, however, blamed the past U.S. administration and leaders for the current trade imbalance. He said that the previous administrations clinched a deal that was not disadvantageous to the American people and the other nations were savvy to take a good deal when they found one.
Trump also drew flak for his calls to reinstate Russia into the group. Russia was suspended from the group — then known as the G8 — in 2014 after its annexation of Crimea, which was the first violation of a European country’s borders since World War II.
Trump, without offering any justification, said that Russia should be let back in. He blamed former president, Barack Obama, for Russia’s move into Crimea.
Trump’s proposal to include Russia in the group comes despite consistent opposition from European allies.
At a press conference on Friday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel made it clear that there was a consensus that Russia should not return to the G7.