The Latest: Girl who talked to Trump still believes in Santa

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump’s Christmas activities (all times local):

7:35 p.m.

A 7-year-old who talked to President Donald Trump still left out milk and cookies for Santa. That’s after Trump told her it was “marginal” for someone her age to still believe.

Then again, Collman Lloyd of Lexington, South Carolina, told the Post and Courier of Charleston that she’d never heard the word “marginal” before.

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Collman had called the NORAD Tracks Santa program on Christmas Eve. Six minutes later, Trump was on the line. His chat with Collman was initially reported as being with a boy named Coleman.

Trump asked, “Are you still a believer in Santa?” She responded, “Yes, sir,” and Trump added, “Because at 7, that’s marginal, right?” She replied, “Yes sir.”

Marginal or not, the next morning the food was gone and presents were under the tree.

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2:05 p.m.

President Donald Trump has wished U.S. troops worldwide a merry Christmas.

Speaking by video conference to members of all five service branches on Christmas morning, Trump said, “I know it’s a great sacrifice for you to be away from your families, but I want you to know that every American family is eternally grateful to you, and we’re holding you close in our hearts, thoughts and prayers.”

The president was spending a rare Christmas in Washington because of a stalemate with Congress over government funding that has left several departments and agencies shuttered, affecting some 800,000 federal employees.

Trump usually spends Christmas at his Florida estate. He scrapped travel plans because of the shutdown.

He told reporters, “I thought it would be wrong for me to be with my family.”

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