Donald Trump has wrongly claimed his father was born in Germany, again, during a press conference with the Nato secretary general, Jens Stoltenberg.
Trump made the claim while criticizing Germany’s chancellor, Angela Merkel, whose country, the president said, “was not paying their fair share” toward the military alliance.
“I have great respect for Angela and I have great respect for the country,” said Trump. “My father is German, was German, born in a very wonderful place in Germany so I have a very great feeling for Germany.”
Trump’s father, Fred Trump, was born in New York. Trump’s grandfather, Friedrich Trump, was born in the German village of Kallstadt.
According to a German historian, Friedrich Trump immigrated to the US in 1885, escaping poverty and allegedly catering to miners during the Gold Rush in the western US. He returned to Germany in 1901, fell in love with Elisabeth Christ. The two married and returned to the US.
Friedrich attempted to return to Germany in 1905 when Christ became homesick, but was ejected from Germany and ordered not to return after it became apparent he failed to perform mandatory military service. The couple returned to the US on a ship bound for Pennsylvania. Christ was three months pregnant with Fred at the time. Their son was born in New York City.
Trump has falsely claimed his father was born in Germany before. In July 2018, as he criticized EU nations for doing business with Iran after Trump broke a nuclear agreement with the country, Trump also claimed his father was born abroad. He was not. Trump’s mother was Scottish.
For years before he became president, Trump falsely claimed former president Barack Obama was born in Kenya, a conspiracy theory he repeated even after it was disproved.