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FILE - In this Jan. 25, 2017 file photo, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer speaks during the daily briefing at the White House in Washington. The new U.S. administration is heating up rhetoric over the South China Sea with a promise to challenge China’s occupation of disputed islands. Beijing is responding cautiously , appealing for calm and direct negotiations involving claimants. Spicer said “the U.S. is going to make sure that we protect our interests there.” His comments came just weeks after President Donald Trump’s pick for secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, caused some consternation when he told his Senate confirmation hearing that the U.S. should deny China access to its seven man-made islands. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

Sean Spicer insisted 'the majority of Americans' agree with Trump's travel ban


WATCH | White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer spoke after a weekend of protests.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said President Trump had called Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday regarding the deadly attack on a mosque in Quebec City. 

Spicer did not call the attack a terrorist attack, despite Trudeau having done so

Spicer also scolded reporters for coverage of the recent restructuring of the National Security Council. Spicer said the office of the Director of National Intelligence and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff had not been "downgraded" and Trump's verbiage regarding the structuring of the meeting was identical to that of former President Obama.

Trump would amend the memo to invite the CIA to the NSC, where it had not been present since the DNI office was created, Spicer said. He said Stephen Bannon would be "in and out of meetings."

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. (Dan Balilty/Pool photo via AP)

Spicer confirmed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would visit the U.S. on Feb. 15.

Spicer said the controversial travel ban was an attempt to "get ahead" of potential threats. Trump would focus on preventing threats, rather than reacting to them, Spicer said. 

Spicer said the travel ban was "never intended to deport people." However, 109 people were detained after landing in the U.S. on Saturday. 

"The majority of Americans agree with the president," Spicer said regarding the travel ban that drew widespread protests. He said multiple times that the process went smoothly. 

When asked about the White House's statement on Holocaust Remembrance Day that did not mention the Jewish people specifically, Spicer said Trump "went out of his way to recognize the Holocaust."

Former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama both acknowledged the day and mentioned Jews by name in their addresses. 

Spicer's comment on the Holocaust drew criticism immediately.

Being able to come to America is a privilege, not a right.
Sean Spicer

Spicer defended the travel ban while acknowledging reports of diplomats circulating a "dissent" cable. 

Spicer also called the detention of 109 people an "inconvenience."

His defense of the travel ban angered some observers.

Trump signed an order that requires repealing 2 regulations for each new one proposed

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