WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump (all times local):
A White House spokesman says President Donald Trump has a “fairly unbelievable” relationship with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Press Secretary Sean Spicer said Tuesday that Trump and Merkel “get along very well. He has a lot of respect for her.”
Merkel suggested after Trump’s first European visit that the continent’s relationship with Washington had shifted. She said, “We in Europe have to take our fate into our own hands.”
Trump tweeted Tuesday that “we have a MASSIVE trade deficit with Germany, plus they pay FAR LESS than they should on NATO & military. Very bad for U.S. This will change.”
Spicer notes that Merkel’s full remarks included a commitment to work in “friendship” with the United States and other countries. He says that is “what the president called for.”
President Donald Trump is still on the hunt for a new FBI director after firing James Comey, and is conducting more meetings to address the vacancy.
White House press secretary Sean Spicer says Trump is scheduled to meet Tuesday with John Pistole (PIS-tul), the former head of the Transportation Security Administration.
Trump also is meeting about the FBI opening with Chris Wray, a former assistant attorney general at the Justice Department.
Before his foreign trip, Trump met with former Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating and acting FBI director Andrew McCabe. Former Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman also met with the president but removed his name from consideration.
White House communications director Michael Dubke has confirmed he is leaving the White House and says his last day on the job has not been determined.
In a statement, Dubke says: “It has been my great honor to serve President Trump and this administration. It has also been my distinct pleasure to work side-by-side, day-by-day with the staff of the communications and press departments.”
A Republican consultant, Dubke joined the White House team in February after campaign aide Jason Miller — Trump’s original choice for communications director — withdrew from consideration. Dubke founded Crossroads Media, a GOP firm that specializes in political advertising.
White House communications director Michael Dubke has resigned.
Kellyanne Conway, White House counselor, has told The Associated Press that Dubke handed in his resignation before President Donald Trump left for his international trip earlier this month.
In an interview on Fox News on Tuesday, Conway said Dubke “made very clear that he would see through the president’s international trip, and come to work every day and work hard even through that trip because there was much to do here back at the White House.”
President Donald Trump says Russian officials “must be laughing at the U.S.”
U.S. intelligence officials have concluded that Moscow tried to meddle in the 2016 presidential election by hacking Democratic emails. A special counsel is now investing whether Trump’s associates may have colluded with Russia during the campaign.
Trump tweeted Tuesday: “Russian officials must be laughing at the U.S. & how a lame excuse for why the Dems lost the election has taken over the Fake News.”
President Donald Trump has renewed his criticism of Germany following Chancellor Angela Merkel’s suggestion that her country needs to adopt a more independent stance in world affairs.
Trump posted a tweet Tuesday saying “we have a MASSIVE trade deficit with Germany, plus they pay FAR LESS than they should on NATO & military. Very bad for U.S. This will change.”
Trump rattled some in Europe with his statements on NATO last week.
Merkel said Tuesday Germany’s relations with the United States are of “outstanding importance” but it must engage with other key nations going forward. She also suggested in the wake of the Trump visit that Europe’s relationship with Washington had shifted significantly and reiterated her position that “we in Europe have to take our fate into our own hands.”