Sean Spicer just called Justin Trudeau ‘Prime Minister Joe Trudeau of Canada’
Joe! Trump's press secretary said Joe Trudeau!
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WASHINGTON—Donald Trump’s press secretary, Sean Spicer, had a lot on his mind at the start of his daily briefing on Tuesday. Which may or may not explain what he called Canada’s prime minister.
Spicer used much of his opening statement to explain the forced resignation of Trump’s national security adviser, Michael Flynn. Before he let reporters begin grilling him on the Flynn fiasco, he found a bit of time to mention Trump’s Monday meeting with Justin Trudeau.
“Yesterday the president set — had an incredibly productive set of meetings and discussions with Prime Minster Joe Trudeau of Canada,” he said, “focusing on our shared commitment to close co-operation in addressing both the challenges facing our two countries and the problems throughout the world. Our countries share a profound economic interest, with more than $2 billion in two-way trade flowing across our border every day.”
It was not immediately clear if Spicer is familiar with the Molson ads featuring a Joe from Canada.
Spicer has faced mockery for his slips of the tongue, deliberate deceit and attacks on the reporters asking him questions. This was his second curious remark related to Canada: in late January, he cited the terror attack on Muslims at a Quebec mosque to justify Trump’s travel ban on people from seven Muslim-majority countries.
Trump’s chaos-plagued young administration has been struggling with basic tasks like identifying foreign leaders correctly. It has called United Kingdom Prime Minister Theresa May “Teresa,” called the president of Colombia the president of “Columbia,” and called the prime minister of Australia the president of Australia.
Canadian officials are unlikely to be upset about the “Joe” gaffe. Perhaps more significant: Spicer adopted one of the Canadian embassy’s favourite talking points, about the $2 billion in daily trade, as his own.