Trump snubs U.S press at event with Emir Kuwait

President Donald Trump navigated his way through a low-key press conference by shunning U.S. reporters and domestic topics at a joint appearance with the Amir of Kuwait, then cracked that his counterpart has ‘problems with the media also.’ 

Trump acted as a sort of emcee in a joint appearance with the Amir Sabah al-Ahmed al-Jaber al-Sabah of Kuwait, picking out questioners from a group of media gathered in the East room of the White House both for himself and for the 88-year-old leader of the Gulf country.

His granting the first question to correspondent Major Garrett, who he referred to as ‘CBS,’ Trump called on a series of questioners for the Amir. 

Trump called on just one other U.S.-based reporter, Nadia Bilbassy, the D.C. based correspondent for Al Arabiya, who solicited comments about Syria and the Middle East. 

After that, with Trump calling on questioners and urging them to direct inquiries to his counterpart, the president managed to avoid hot domestic topics of the day.

‘I am very, very honored and happy to know that you have problems with the media also,’ Trump told the Amir.  

Trump pointed to a female correspondent, without calling on her by name, saying only: ‘Yes. For the Amir first please.

‘My question is for you, Mr. President, first,’ the Kuwait News Agency Correspondent replied, asking whether he backed Kuwait’s role mediating a dispute involving nearby Qatar.

‘I would be willing to be the mediator,’ Trump responded, addign that he had a ‘long conversation’ with the king of Saudi Arabia on ‘unrelated subjects,’ and that he was ‘a friend of mine.’

Trump pointed to the audience again, at which point another man asked a question in Arabic about the U.S. security commitment to Kuwait.

Then, Trump turned to the Amir, asking: ‘You have a question?’

‘Your people have a question, yes,’ Trump said, before pointing to the audience to call on another questioner, from the Qatar-based Al Jazeera. 

Trump managed to get through the event without having to talk about his plan to end DACA, his deal with Democrats to raise the debt ceiling and pay for hurricane relief, or his eldest son Donald Trump Jr.’s Thursday testimony before Senate Judiciary Committee staff.