President Donald Trump wrapped up a whirlwind trip to Quebec, Canada for the G7 Summit Saturday, reaffirming his “America First” approach to trade in a series of highly-anticipated meetings with world leaders.
Prior to leaving for the gathering, President Trump said Russian president Vladimir Putin, booted from the group for annexing Crimea, should be invited to future summits.
“They should let Russia come back in. We should have Russia at the negotiating table.” Trump said. “Why are we having a meeting without Russia being in the meeting?”
“Why are we having a meeting without Russia? I would recommend, and it is up to them, but Russia should be in the meeting,” President Trump says of G7 summit. “They should let Russia come back in because we should have Russia at the negotiating table.” https://t.co/gPokHDkAxK pic.twitter.com/7lB7RSNZaf
— CBS News (@CBSNews) June 8, 2018
“It may not be politically correct – we have a world to run,” he added.
In an unscheduled statement, Trump said he wants to put an end to the United States’ status as the world’s “piggy bank” and suggested eliminating trade barriers between allies.
“Ultimately that’s what you want,” Trump remarked. “You want a tariff-free [arrangement]. You want no barriers. And you want no subsidies. Because you have some cases where countries are subsidizing industries, and that’s not fair.”
“If they retaliate, they’re making a tremendous mistake, because you see we have a tremendous trade imbalance,” the President warned. “The numbers are so much against them, we win that war 1000 times out of a 1000.”
“I blame our leaders and I congratulate leaders of other countries for taking advantage of our leaders.”
“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.”
One U.S. official told Breitbart News Economics and Finance Editor John Carney that world leaders were mistaken if they believed President Trump would soften his position on tariffs.
“If they thought they were going to lecture Trump on the glories of free trade, they got a rude awakening. He came to a gun fight armed with a stealth bomber.”
President Trump departed the summit early, skipping out on a meeting to discuss climate change.