Home / NEWS / White House press office misidentified Japanese Prime Minister Abe as president

White House press office misidentified Japanese Prime Minister Abe as president

On Saturday, the White House press office incorrectly referred to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe as President Abe of Japan” in a news release detailing President Trump’s meeting with the Japanese leader during the G-20 summit.

However, President Trump did correctly refer to the leader of Japan as prime minster during his remarks.

This isn’t the first time the White House press team has misidentified a world leader since Trump took office.

In January, the White House misspelled British Prime Minister Theresa May’s first name, leaving out the letter “h,” in a memo and official schedule sent to the press.

The White House promptly corrected the error but not before several news outlets noted the misspelling was the name of a different, um, public figure: former adult film star Teresa May.

In February, White House press secretary Sean Spicer referred to Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as “Joe” during a news conference.

“Yesterday the president had an incredibly productive set of meetings and discussions with Prime Minister Joe Trudeau of Canada focusing on our shared commitment to close cooperation in addressing both the challenges facing our two countries and the problems throughout the world,” he said.

Prime Minster Trudeau made light of the gaffe during his remarks at the annual Parliamentary Press Gallery Dinner in June. Trudeau poked fun at his well-practiced and “normal” handshake — a reference to Trump’s notoriously overly firm handshake — suggesting it may have contributed to Spicer’s mistake.

“You were all in Washington, you saw,” he said, addressing the reporters in attendance. “That handshake was so damn normal, Sean Spicer even forgot my name.”

The Trump administration has flubbed the titles of its own, too. In an April news release, it identified Steven Mnuchin as “Secretary of Commerce.” Mnuchin is the treasury secretary.

But gaffes and misspellings happen. President Barack Obama’s press office misspelled President Ronald Reagan twice in a release in 2014.


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