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The White House Can't Get Malcolm Turnbull's Name Right And Now They've Called Him "President"

Australia has no president.

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The White House issued a statement on Saturday that incorrectly called the prime minister of Australia, Malcolm Turnbull, the "President of Australia."

Win Mcnamee / Getty Images

The mistake came in a press release entitled "President Trump: Making America Safe Again," which outlined Donald Trump's activities in his two weeks in the Oval Office, including conversations with multiple world leaders.

But unlike the other 15 leaders named in the statement on Saturday, Turnbull was the the only person whose name was not used.

Instead, the White House statement simply listed Turnbull as "the President of Australia."

Australia does not have a president, as it is a constitutional monarchy. Instead, the prime minister is the head of government, with Queen Elizabeth II the head of state, although her role is largely ceremonial. (Turnbull, though, famously supports the move to become a republic).

Trump and Turnbull spoke by phone late January to discuss a controversial refugee deal made between the Australian leader and former President Barack Obama.

After reports emerged that Trump angrily assailed the Aussie leader during the call, the president later tweeted that he thought the refugee agreement was a "dumb deal."

This is not the first time the White House has misidentified Turnbull.

In a series of press conferences last week, White House press secretary Sean Spicer called Turnbull "prime minister Trumble" multiple times.

Excuse me everyone, please enjoy White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer TWICE saying "Prime Minister TRUMBLE"

White House representatives did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Brad Esposito is a news reporter for BuzzFeed and is based in Sydney, Australia.

Contact Brad Esposito at

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