Dutch Prime Minister Not Playing Trump's Game

Clay Curtis
July 6, 2018

Trump is also threatening to impose tariffs on vehicles.

President Trump hosted the Prime Minister of the Netherlands at the White House Monday.

I think the European Union - we're going to be meeting with them fairly soon. Everything is going great and then everything suddenly started not going great, as pretty much everyone could have expected, because Donald Trump during this meeting, during the time when they're both sitting in their chairs and you have the media all around them, taking the pictures and asking questions, Trump starts to talk about tariffs, right? That will be good, and if we do work it out, that'll be positive, and if we don't, it'll be positive also.

The issue is controversial within the Dutch cabinet, where coalition partner D66 has strong reservations about Trump's travel ban on citizens from selected Muslim countries.

But Rutte ― still smiling ― wasn't having it.

TRUMP: - because we're just thinking about those cars that pour in here.

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"It's not positive", he said. "We have to work something out". Axios reported details of what it said was a leaked Trump administration drafted bill to "declare America's abandonment of fundamental World Trade Organization rules".

"Maybe the American president doesn't care about being isolated today, but we don't mind being six, if needs be", Macron told reporters.

Nonetheless, the embarrassing photo-op for the president ended on a rather good note.

Trump and Rutte will both be attending next week's North Atlantic Treaty Organisation meetings.

The Netherlands is part of the European Union, which has been involved in a trade dispute with Trump over the automobile imports. "We have always been friends, always been friendly, working closely together".

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