Thursday’s get-together with Turnbull was delayed because of Trump’s hastily arranged White House celebration with Republicans from the U.S. House of Representatives after they narrowly passed a healthcare bill that would repeal and replace the 2010 Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare. The measure has yet to come before the Senate/
Trump and Turnbull were all smiles as they answered questions about the January phone call and the refugee deal during a picture-taking session.
“We get along great. We have a fantastic relationship, I love Australia, I always have,” Trump said.
Turnbull added: “We can put the refugee deal behind you and move on.”
Trump said the refugee deal had been “worked out for a long time” and that reporters had exaggerated the phone call.
“We had a great call,” he said, adding, “I mean, we’re not babies.”
“Young at heart,” added Turnbull.
Trump vowed to visit Australia as president, calling it “one of the great, great places” and noted he had many friends there. One such friend, pro golfer Greg Norman, was among the attendees at the Intrepid dinner.
In dinner remarks after their meeting, Turnbull celebrated the unity of spirit that brought the two countries together against Japan in World War Two, and said Australia and the United States are united against North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs and are fighting together in Afghanistan.
“Today and together, we condemn and we resist North Korea’s provocation,” he said.
It was Trump’s first trip back to New York, his home and where he made his name and fortune, since the former real estate executive moved into the White House in January.
His motorcade passed hundreds of protesters as it arrived at the Intrepid in the early evening. Trump did not plan to visit Trump Tower, his home in midtown Manhattan where his wife, first lady Melania Trump, and their young son Barron still live, but instead was to spend the weekend at his golf resort in Bedminster, New Jersey.
(Reporting by Steve Holland; Editing by Peter Cooney and Leslie Adler)
By Sunday Ejianya