Speed Reads

no more mr. nice guy

European Union president flays Trump over reported decision to back out of Paris climate deal

The United Nations has already passive-aggressively expressed its frustration with reports that President Trump has decided to back out of the Paris climate agreement, but European Union President Jean-Claude Juncker did not bother to tip-toe around the topic. On Wednesday, Juncker responded to the news by firmly saying, "That's not how it works."

"The Americans can't just leave the climate protection agreement," Juncker said. "Mr. Trump believes that because he doesn't get close enough to the dossiers to fully understand them. It would take three to four years after the agreement came into force in November 2016 to leave the agreement. So this notion, 'I am Trump, I am American, America First, and I'm going to get out of it' — that won't happen."

Former President Barack Obama signed the deal in 2015. All but two countries in the world, Nicaragua and Syria, support the agreement. Axios reports that the administration is still "deciding on whether to initiate a full, formal withdrawal — which could take three years — or exit the underlying United Nations climate change treaty, which would be faster but more extreme."

Juncker added that "we tried to explain that to Mr. Trump in [Taormina, Sicily, where the G7 summit was held last week] in clear German sentences. It seems our attempt failed, but the law is the law and it must be obeyed. Not everything which is law and not everything in international agreements is fake news, and we have to comply with it."

Read Juncker's scathing full statement here.