Mnuchin Attacks Greta Thunberg, Says She Needs To Study Economics

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin briefs reporters at the White House on President Donald Trump's newly signed executive order imposing new sanctions on Iran on June 24, 2019. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
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January 23, 2020 10:53 a.m.

The 17-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg truly seems to be getting under the Trump administration’s skin.

On Wednesday, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin took a shot at the teen during a press conference at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland after she pleaded with world leaders to stop investing in fossil fuels.

“Is she the chief economist? Who is she? I’m confused,” Mnuchin joked.

“After she goes to college and studies economics in college, she can come back and explain that to us,” he added.

Thunberg fired back at the Trump official on Thursday, tweeting out a graph video of the shrinking carbon budget by Carbon Brief, a climate science website.

“So either you tell us how to achieve this mitigation or explain to future generations and those already affected by the climate emergency why we should abandon our climate commitments,” she continued.

When the hosts of CNBC’s “Squawk Box” asked Mnuchin about his comments on Thursday, the secretary claimed the administration’s environmental policies “are misunderstood” and that President Donald Trump “supports a clean environment.”

Trump has mocked Thunberg and openly fumed about TIME choosing the activist as its 2019 Person of the Year, a title Trump desperately covets.

“So ridiculous,” he tweeted. “Greta must work on her Anger Management problem, then go to a good old fashioned movie with a friend! Chill Greta, Chill!”

Trump told the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday that he doesn’t “really know anything about her” but that she’s “very angry.”

Thunberg said in December that she wouldn’t have bothered speaking to Trump about climate change at the United Nations summit on the issue.

“Honestly, I don’t think I would have said anything because obviously he’s not listening to scientists and experts, so why would he listen to me?” she said during a BBC interview.

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