Politicians should know by now that nothing said at a private fundraising event is truly private. Someone is going to leak it. And someone gave audio of Trump speaking at a private dinner on Wednesday in which he bragged about just making up a “fact” in talks with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
“Trudeau came to see me. He’s a good guy, Justin. He said, ‘No, no, we have no trade deficit with you, we have none. Donald, please,’ ” Trump said, mimicking Trudeau, according to audio of the private event in Missouri obtained by The Washington Post. “Nice guy, good-looking guy, comes in — ‘Donald, we have no trade deficit.’ He’s very proud because everybody else, you know, we’re getting killed.
“… So, he’s proud. I said, ‘Wrong, Justin, you do.’ I didn’t even know. … I had no idea. I just said, ‘You’re wrong.’ You know why? Because we’re so stupid. … And I thought they were smart. I said, ‘You’re wrong, Justin.’ He said, ‘Nope, we have no trade deficit.’ I said, ‘Well, in that case, I feel differently,’ I said, ‘but I don’t believe it.’ I sent one of our guys out, his guy, my guy, they went out, I said, ‘Check, because I can’t believe it.’
‘Well, sir, you’re actually right. We have no deficit, but that doesn’t include energy and timber. … And when you do, we lose $17 billion a year.’ It’s incredible.”
No, in fact, it does include timber and energy. In fact, the single largest product we buy from Canada is oil, which tips the balances strongly in their favor. But not enough to overcome the amount that they buy from us. Vox lays out all the numbers in detail. So, caught redhanded admitting — hell, bragging — that he just makes stuff up whether it’s true or not, how does Trump respond? With a tweet that continues to lie about the matter.
We do have a Trade Deficit with Canada, as we do with almost all countries (some of them massive). P.M. Justin Trudeau of Canada, a very good guy, doesn’t like saying that Canada has a Surplus vs. the U.S.(negotiating), but they do…they almost all do…and that’s how I know!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 15, 2018
He knows they run a trade surplus with us because “they almost all do.” But in fact, Canada does not. The Office of the US Trade Representative says so, the Commerce Department says so, every measure we have says so. It’s not like we can’t track these things, right? This is Trump at maximum Trump. He’s a con artist who just makes things up whether they’re true or not and then refuses to retract or back down no matter how blatant the lie and how obviously he’s been caught.
Now think about being another world leader knowing this. How could you ever trust anything he tells you? Or anything anyone who represents him tells you, because he has a long record of contradicting his cabinet members by contradicting them in public even when they were out there pushing the official administration line that they had all agreed on. Think about how utterly pathological someone has to be to behave this way.