Spencer P. Boyer was a nonresident senior fellow in the Center on the United States and Europe at the Brookings Institution. His areas of analysis include trans-Atlantic security relations, the future of the European Union, populism, extremism, Turkey, and Russian influence in Europe. He is also the director of the Washington Office of the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law; an adjunct professor in the BMW Center for German and European Studies at the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University; and a senior fellow in the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement at the University of Pennsylvania.
Among those in the current US administration, President Macron is perceived to be a solid partner. Not only do Macron and President Trump have personal chemistry, which was seen by all during Trump’s trip to France last summer, but Macron’s decision to team with the US and UK in striking Syrian chemical weapons facilities recently demonstrated solidarity on a key security priority… Getting the United States to stick with the Iran nuclear accord will be Macron’s top priority during his visit to Washington but the prospects for a major breakthrough are unclear… It’s helpful that Macron and President Trump have personal rapport. It’s uncertain, however, if this will be enough to overcome the hardline posture Trump has taken towards Iran.
[Republicans] need to maintain the GOP’s brand as strong on security and they feel that Trump is undermining that—that the investigation into him and his potential ties with Russia during the campaign really hurts their storyline.
President Macron was highly skilled at putting President Trump at ease and avoiding any land mines that would have derailed the show of unity. Macron was especially adept at sidestepping questions about U.S. political controversies, which Trump clearly appreciated.