Even the most basic goals of the summit – leaders taking photos and agreeing to a joint statement to show unity of purpose among democracies – are impossible with Trump involved. Macron wisely decided not to even attempt a full joint communique from the leaders (they instead released a brief one page list of issues discussed) – the first time in more than four decades of summits the G7 didn’t have one – in order to avoid last year’s catastrophe when Trump withdrew his support for the communique after it had been finalized.
If these reasons for suspending next year’s G7 summit weren’t strong enough, with the United States slated to host in 2020 there are endless more opportunities for disaster. Trump made clear yet again at this year’s summit that he thinks Russian President Vladimir Putin should be invited back, even though Russia was expelled after invading Crimea in 2014 and still illegally occupies Crimea. As host next year, Trump could invite Putin even if others don’t want to. Trump also said that he wants to host the G7 at one of his resort properties, another opportunity to enrich himself at the expense of the taxpayer and violate the emoluments clause of the constitution. And it’s scary to try to imagine what kind of policy agenda Trump would set – and especially terrifying envisioning Trump attempting to run the meetings.