(AP/John Locher/Reuters/Yves Herman/Photo montage by Salon)

Meet Trump's imaginary friend "Jim," who makes his arguments for him

Trump's friend "Jim" helped paint Paris in a bad light and argue against immigration


follow us in feedly
Charlie May
July 13, 2017 8:26PM (UTC)

Who is President Donald Trump's friend Jim? The world may never find out.

According to the president, Jim loved the city of Paris but he doesn't travel there anymore because "the city has been infiltrated by foreign extremists," as the Associated Press wrote. No one truly knows if Jim even exists, but the president has referenced him numerous times, and many outlets have sought to solve the mystery to no avail.

Advertisement:

During a speech in February at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Maryland, the president said Jim "loves the City of Lights, he loves Paris. For years, every year during the summer, he would go to Paris. It was automatic, with his wife and his family," according to the AP.

But when Trump asked Jim how Paris was doing, Jim said things weren't going well for the European capital. "Paris?" Jim replied, according to Trump. "I don’t go there anymore. Paris is no longer Paris." Trump has long criticized European immigration policies, and Trump's anti-immigration rhetoric has been at the forefront of his strategy to fight terror.

Yet Trump took a much softer tone on European immigration and terrorism when directly confronted by a French reporter on Thursday, according to Business Insider. The reporter brought up Trump's so-called friend Jim and said, "You were implying at the time that Paris was not safe anymore."

"You've also said that France and Germany are infected by terrorism and 'it's their fault, because they let people enter their territory," he added. "Those are very strong words. Would you repeat them today? And do you still believe that France is not able to fight terrorism on its own territory?" the reporter asked.

Trump said the question was "a beauty," Business Insider reported. "You know what? It's going to be just fine, because you have a great president," Trump responded, even though Macron's view of immigration and the European Union is largely different than what Trump has expressed in the past.

"You have somebody that's going to run this country right. And I would be willing to bet cause I think this is one of the great cities, one of the most beautiful cities in the world, and you have a great leader now, you have a great president. You have a tough president," Trump continued.

Advertisement:

During the French presidential election, Trump said Macron's opponent Marine Le Pen, who hails from the far-right National Front party, was "the strongest on borders and [the] strongest on what’s been going on in France," according to the AP.

"[Macron]'s not going to be easy on people that are breaking the laws and people that show this tremendous violence," Trump also said on Thursday. "So I really have a feeling that you're going to have a very peaceful and beautiful Paris. And I'm coming back."


Charlie May

Charlie May is a news writer at Salon. You can find him on Twitter at @charliejmay

MORE FROM Charlie May

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Anti-immigration Donald Trump Emmanuel Macron European Union Paris Trump Administration

BROWSE SALON.COM
COMPLETELY AD FREE,
FOR THE NEXT HOUR

Read Now, Pay Later - no upfront
registration for 1-Hour Access

Click Here
7-Day Access and Monthly
Subscriptions also available
No tracking or personal data collection
beyond name and email address

•••


Fearless journalism
in your inbox every day

Sign up for our free newsletter

• • •