Last Saturday, President Trump was in a call with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull when he abruptly hung up over a disagreement, officials say. Prime Minister Turnbull had asked Trump to honor a deal made under President Obama that required the United States to take in 1250 refugees from an Australian detention center, which Trump steadfastly refused. According to one of Mr. Trump’s senior administration officials, the President had told Mr. Turnbull that the 1250 refugees could include “the next Boston bombers” and that honoring the deal would cause Trump to be “killed” politically.
Senator John McCain, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, quickly called Australia’s ambassador to the United States, Joe Hockey, to reassure him that America and Australia’s alliance continued to have “wavering support.” Senator McCain further praised Australian service members, and made clear that despite Trump’s abruptly ended call the United States and Australia would remain top allies with one another.
The Australian Ambassador to the United States, Joe Hockey, met with Chief of Staff Reince Priebus and Chief Strategist Steve Bannon on Thursday. The White House said the meeting was “productive.”
“They conveyed the President’s deep admiration for the Australian people.”