President Trump has repeatedly described media criticism of him as “fake news” since taking office last month, labelling the media as the “opposition party”.
Malcolm Turnbull said President Trump should stop wasting his time complaining about the media
Turnbull, whose relationship with President Trump got off to a rocky start earlier this month, said the 45th American president should stop focusing on the media.
“A very great politician, Winston Churchill, once said that politicians complaining about the newspapers is like a sailor complaining about the sea,” Turnbull told reporters in New Zealand today.
Mr Trump has called the media criticism of as 'fake news' and labelled the media as the 'opposition'
“There is not much point. That is the media we live with and we have to get our message across and we thank you all in the media for your kind attention,” he said.
There is not much point. That is the media we live with and we have to get our message across
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull
Turnbull is speaking from experience as he faces a constant stream of questions from domestic media about his leadership, with opinion polls showing the popularity of his centre-right government sinking to its lowest in more than a year.
Relations between the United States and Australia hit a low point this month when President Trump said on Twitter that a planned refugee swap between the two nations was a “dumb deal”.
The Australian PM cited Winston Churchill as he called on Mr Trump to stop focusing on the media Inside Trump's White House Chaos Thu, February 16, 2017
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Trump signs H.J. Res. 38, disapproving the rule submitted by the US Department of the Interior known as the Stream Protection Rule in the Roosevelt Room of the White House
That followed a Washington Post report about an acrimonious telephone call between the two leaders that attracted headlines worldwide.
Asked about his dealings with President Trump, Turnbull said: “President Trump and I have had several calls now, very constructive calls. It was frank and forthright and it was very valuable.”
Australia is a staunch US ally and is currently flying combat missions in Syria. It has also said it was open to stepping up its military commitment against the militant Islamic State group.
Reports of a telephone call between the two leaders created headlines worldwide
With his promise to put “America First”, President Trump has also scrapped or promised to renegotiate trade deals such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the North American Free Trade Agreement since coming to office, but Turnbull warned against a more protectionist US trade stance.
“Protectionism is not the ladder to get you out of the low growth track, it is the shovel to dig it deeper and deeper and deeper,” he said.
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