By Steven E. White
President Donald Trump hosted a joint press conference with Erna Solberg, the Norwegian Prime Minister, on January 10, in the East Room of the White House. They spoke of their relationship and the problems facing their respective nations, covering various topics such as trade, climate, Russia collusion, and the Paris Agreement.
Trump opened the conference with, “Good afternoon, I’m honored to welcome Prime Minister Erna Solberg of Norway, to the White House.” He then proceeded to give a brief history of their countries’ long time alliance and friendship, expressing pride in fighting side by side on the beaches of Normandy in 1944, during World War ll. “The Prime Minister and I are both committed to strengthening the NATO alliance,” Trump stated that they are doing ‘very well’ in Afghanistan, and that things have turned around. “Norway is also a vital and valued member of the campaign to defeat ISIS; because of us, ISIS has lost almost 100% of the territory it previously held.”
Trump was happy to announce that economic ties between the countries are ‘robust and growing.’ According to the foreign trade census, American exports to Norway have exceeded imports from them, setting the trade deficit for 2017 at a positive 381 million. A positive trade deficit with Norway has never been achieved, at least since the annual census began in 1985. The closest year to obtain a positive trade deficit was in 1991, when the deficit ended at -135 million. This was another huge win for the American people, and the Trump administration. “I want to thank the people of Norway for their commitment to fair and reciprocal trade…. A word(reciprocal) that you’re going to hear more and more coming from this administration, and it should’ve come from other administrations before me.”
“Together we’ve fought against fascism, communism, terrorism, and we face threats always together. Our partnership has advanced peace, cooperation, and respect for human dignity all around the world.” Trump ended his monologue.
Solberg then spoke with great respect and admiration for America and Trump, “Our norwegian constitution, the second oldest in the world, that is still in force, was inspired by American ideals. We have a long and continuous history of serving shoulder to shoulder on battlefields around the world.” She expresses that the US remains their greatest ally, trade partner, and friend. “It’s important that we are all working together to find solutions in North Korea, Afghanistan, Syria, and Iraq.” Since September 11, 2001, Norway has contributed to America’s war on terrorism, including the fight against ISIS.
After their speeches, they opened the floor to the press, taking questions from various media agencies. In a question of whether or not Trump would sign an immigration deal that didn’t include funding for the border wall, he firmly answered, “No! It’s gotta include the wall.”
Trump stood firm on his Paris-trade agreement ordeal, and stated it was a good thing to pull out of, speaking that the parameters set on America was unfair. He assured that the deal, inherently, is a good thing, but that “like usual” they made a bad deal and he wasn’t going to let that happen.
Trump also continued to embarrass the press which kept prying for information on a Russia collusion. Solberg stated, in regards to a collusion, “This has affected those outside of America.” She spoke on how they felt the need to investigate their own elections in fear of tampering, but, like America, they haven’t found any collusion or tampering.