Stories

Trump's warnings to Merkel on trade and defense

Merkel looks down at her podium while Trump speaks during a joint press conference
President Trump speaks during a joint press conference with Germany's Angela Merkel. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump sent two strong signals at his joint press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel Friday: he railed against NATO allies, like Germany, that don't spend the mandatory 2% of GDP on defense, and also touted how successful the U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum have been.

Why it matters, per Axios World Editor, Dave Lawler: The E.U.’s exemption from steel and aluminum tariffs expires Tuesday. Merkel's key priority for her D.C. visit is to get a longer-term exemption. She may end up getting it — but Trump is sending some pretty strong messages here.