But it looks like we have a winner for the best response to Trump. After putting out a joint statement with Germany and Italy, French President Emmanuel Macron went out and gave a pretty epic three-minute statement — in English.
Here’s Macron below:
Let’s unpack a few things he did in that little ditty.
Knowing an American audience would be watching and listening, he went straight for the national security implications of climate change. “If we do nothing, our children will know a world of migrations, of wars, of shortage. A dangerous world,” the French leader said.
In other words: This ain’t just a science-y thing. This a real security problem, as even the Pentagon noted in a major report.
Macron called Trump’s decision not to honor the agreement a “mistake.” Just by the fact that he felt compelled to give an address in English, that seemed obvious. And it’s not the only time Trump and Macron have publicly battled in recent days.
Perhaps showing that he believes in American exceptionalism more than the president — who thinks America needs to be made great again — Macron said “the world believes in you. I know that you are a great nation.” That line was ... not subtle.
He also made a plea for entrepreneurs, scientists, and engineers who want to work on climate issues to leave the United States and move to France (it is the Paris agreement, after all). That’s bold: an active call for America’s top innovative minds to move to France. Which, it should be said, is a direct challenge to Trump’s entire argument that pulling out of the agreement is in America’s economic interest.
And last — but definitely not least — Macron caps off his little speech by calling on Americans, the French, and other allies to “make our planet great again.”
Subtle. Or ... maybe not.
As my colleague Sarah Wildman recently noted, the “baby-faced new French president” has clearly “got swagger befitting a man with twice as much experience, and a country with twice as much military power.”
Macron may be new to the politics game, but boy does he know how to play it.