Why a Norwegian Politician Has Nominated Donald Trump for Nobel Peace Prize Multiple Times
Christian Tybring-Gjedde said he is "not a big Trump supporter" but that he still believes the president deserves the recognition
A member of Norwegian's Parliament has nominated President Donald Trump for a Nobel Peace Prize for the second time in recent years, this time citing his work in normalizing relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
That year's prize went instead to Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad, but that hasn't deterred Tybring-Gjedde, who again nominated the president in a letter to the Nobel Committee this week.
Tybring-Gjedde, who also serves as chairman of the Norwegian delegation to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, wrote that Trump was deserving of the honor due to his and his administration's work in brokering an historic peace deal between Israel and the UAE, announced in August.
Though the accord was seen as a breakthrough in the Middle East — reflecting what the Associated Press noted was the UAE's changing priorities in the region — questions remain about elements of it, such as a stop on Israel's annexation of occupied West Bank land. The Palestinians also criticized the agreement for, in their view, sidelining them.
The deal is reportedly expected to be signed later this month.
In a Wednesday interview with Fox News, Tybring-Gjedde argued that Trump "has done more trying to create peace between nations than most other Peace Prize nominees."
He went on to say that he is "not a big Trump supporter” but that “the committee should look at the facts and judge him on the facts — not on the way he behaves sometimes," referring to Trump's history of provocation.
Former President Barack Obama, he contended, "did nothing" and still won the prize in 2009. (At the time, the Nobel committee lauded Obama for his "extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy.")
Though Tybring-Gjedde told Fox News the nomination isn't meant to court Trump's favor, the two do share some similar views.
As a member of Norway's conservative-leaning populist party, Tybring-Gjedde has made a reputation for being vocally anti-immigration. In 2011, he was criticized for saying Muslims are naturally more aggressive than Norwegians. Four years later, Trump — who kicked off his Presidential bid with many harsh words for Mexican immigrants — infamously called for a "complete shutdown" of Muslims entering the United States.
Thousands of people can nominate others for the Nobel Prize, including members of national parliament and college professors.
The recipient of the 2021 prize is expected to be announced in October, after a five-person committee (one appointed by the Norwegian Parliament) makes its selection.
In the past, Trump has claimed that the prize is selected unfairly and that he is therefore unlikely to win. When asked by reporters in 2019 whether he believed he deserved the honor, though, Trump said: "Everyone thinks so, but I would never say it."