October 10, 2017 10:05 pm

Donald Trump asks Pittsburgh Penguins co-owner to ‘help with NAFTA’

As the NFL anthem controversy persists, the Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins paid a visit to President Donald Trump at the White House. As Eric Sorensen reports, the normal levity of such an event took on political overtones in the polarizing atmosphere that surrounds Trump.


U.S. President Donald Trump hosted the Pittsburgh Penguins at the White House Tuesday afternoon for the second year in a row.

But he had a question for the co-owner of the two-time Stanley Cup champions.

“Ron, how about negotiating some of our horrible trade deals that they’ve made?” Trump jokingly asked during his speech. “Here’s what I want, I want to get him. Oh, I would love to have Ron Burkle.

“And it’s great to have you, Ron. But I really mean that, if you want to get involved in negotiating NAFTA, I like it. Because we’re renegotiating NAFTA, Ron.”

NAFTA negotiations are due to start Wednesday. Sources in Mexico told Reuters that they will be extended by two days until Oct. 17.

Earlier in the day, Trump told Forbes magazine he was considering terminating the trade agreement between Canada, Mexico and the U.S.

Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray said on Tuesday that an end to the agreement would be a breaking point in Mexican-U.S. relations and would affect bilateral cooperation in other areas.

There are reports that negotiations aren’t going well, and Trump has often called NAFTA “unfair.”

No mention of NFL, NBA

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WATCH ABOVE: Pittsburgh Penguins pay controversial visit to White House

During the meeting, Trump praised Penguin Captain and playoff MVP Sidney Crosby, along with a few others by name.

The team, as well as Crosby, has been criticized for accepting an invitation during the controversy between Trump and other sports teams.

READ MORE: NFL owners to discuss anthem policy amid Trump’s criticism of protests

Trump has grabbed a number of sports headlines in recent weeks, including his criticism of NFL players for kneeling during the anthem and his decision to disinvite the NBA champion Golden State Warriors from the White House for the type of championship visit made by the Penguins, the New England Patriots and the Chicago Cubs along with Clemson football team.

“Everybody wanted to be here today,” Trump said of the Penguins. “And I know why.”

FULL: Pittsburgh Penguins visit Donald Trump at the White House

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