White House Spokesman Sean Spicer says President Trump respects German Chancellor Angela Merkel and accuses the media of misquoting Merkel on Europe's ties with the U.S. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) U.S. President Donald Trump views Germany as an important U.S. ally and gets along very well with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the White House said on Tuesday. Speaking at a news briefing after Trump intensified a dispute with Germany by calling Berlin's trade and spending policies "very bad," White House spokesman Sean Spicer said, "They get along very well. He has a lot of respect for her. ... And he views not just Germany but the rest of Europe as an important American ally." Merkel underlined her doubts about the reliability of the United States as an ally on Monday but said she was a "convinced trans-Atlanticist", fine-tuning her message after surprising Washington with her frankness a day earlier. In a speech in Berlin, Merkel showed how seriously she is concerned about Washington's dependability under President Donald Trump by repeating the message she delivered a day earlier that the days when Europe could completely count on others were "over to a certain extent".