President Trump phoned Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to congratulate him on winning a referendum that will grant the foreign leader broader powers, according to reports. Turkey’s state-run Anadolu Agency reported the news. Israeli newspaper Haaretz also cited presidential sources in Turkey. News of the call comes as opposition groups in Turkey have contested the results of the referendum. The referendum institutes constitutional reforms, including giving Erdogan broader powers to appoint ministers and judges. It also reportedly eliminates the country’s office of prime minister. Erdogan has moved to tighten his control in Turkey after a failed coup in 2016.
According to Internet portal KnowMyRepublican.com, there have also been reports on the conversation that took place between the two presidents. President Trump has, apparently, not only congratulated Erdogan on his referendum results, but has also stated that he hopes America will soon “follow Turkey’s example for a stronger democracy.” “I know this is something many of your neighboring countries disagree with, Mr. President, but I can assure you that we are 100% on your side. We support any and all decisions, political or otherwise, that have to do with maintaining and promoting democratic values in Turkey and the region,” Trump reportedly said.
Asked to comment, President Trump said that the phone call was mostly private and served to reassure President Erdogan that “Turkey is still one of the most reliable NATO allies in the region,” but it also “couldn’t have gone without some personal reassurances as well.” “Let me tell you something about the Turkish president, that man knows how to run a tight ship and he’s not kidding. He just had a coup attempted, what, last year and he handled it beautifully, so a referendum like this is a natural reaction and a signal to disruptive elements that the democracy in Turkey is off limits, permanently,” President Trump told media outlets.
He added, “Sure, I did say I hoped America would soon follow Turkey’s example, because God knows we need a stronger democracy here, I mean, look at the place, we’re falling apart. But, don’t worry, I’m on it. Anyway, I really think what President Erdong…Eragon…anyway, the Turkish president has done was the smart thing to do. So much so, in fact, that I’m seriously thinking of doing the same thing here, just so we make sure no coups are attempted. We’ve always been a forward-thinking nation, so it makes perfect sense to do the opposite of Turkey, which is to say, have a referendum before a coup and not the other way around.”
“I know our political hierarchy is different to the rest of the world, but we’ve always been unique in everything we do. Therefore, even though we don’t have a Prime Minister, I’m convinced we could do without some senators and representatives who are only weighing down the budget. That, and then there’s also the fact that I’d love to be able to appoint Supreme Court Justices how ever I see fit, but that’s common knowledge. Anyway, there’s still a lot of planning to do, but like I said, it would be pretty cool for me to do the Turkish thing and have some more power. All in the best interest of our democracy, of course,” President Trump concluded./ source: