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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.

Other highlights:
  • Trade deficit with Europe: Trump says it's been unfair, but said he doesn't blame Merkel, Germany or the European Union for the imbalance. "I blame my predecessors."
  • The Iran nuclear deal: Trump said the U.S. must ensure the current regime does “not get even close to a nuclear weapon.”
    • Merkel's take: She called the deal "anything but perfect," but said it's up to Trump to determine whether the U.S. will ultimately exit.
  • North Korea summit: “I think I have a responsibility” to aid in the negotiation of a deal between North Korea and South Korea, Trump said. But added, "Maximum pressure will continue until denuclearization occurs ... I look forward to our meeting, which will be quite something."
  • Ronny Jackson's withdrawal as VA Secretary nominee: Dr. Ronny Jackson is “one of the finest men” I’ve ever met, said Trump, and called him “an American hero” for exposing the system in Washington as mean and unfair.

Go deeper

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Ipsos poll: COVID trick-or-treat.
  2. World: Greece tightens coronavirus restrictions as Europe cases spike.
  3. Economy: Conference Board predicts economy won’t fully recover until late 2021.
  4. Education: Surge threatens to shut classrooms down again.
  5. Technology: Fully at-home rapid COVID test to move forward.
  6. Travel: CDC replaces COVID-19 cruise ban with less restrictive "conditional sailing order."

Trump's legacy is shaped by his narrow interests

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

President Trump's policy legacy is as much defined by what he's ignored as by what he's involved himself in.

The big picture: Over the past four years, Trump has interested himself in only a slim slice of the government he leads. Outside of trade, immigration, a personal war against the "Deep State" and the hot foreign policy issue of the moment, Trump has left many of his Cabinet secretaries to work without interruption, let alone direction.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
5 hours ago - Technology

AI and automation are creating a hybrid workforce

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

AI and automation are receiving a boost during the coronavirus pandemic that in the short term is creating a new hybrid workforce rather than destroying jobs outright.

The big picture: While the forces of automation and AI will eliminate some jobs and create some new ones, the vast majority will remain but be dramatically changed. The challenge for employers will be ensuring workforces are ready for the effects of technology.

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