Sen. Ed Markey: President Trump Insults America's Friends, Embraces Enemies


Sen. Ed Markey speaks with MSNBC's Chris Hayes about President Trump's visit to the G7 summit in Quebec and his meeting with Kim Jong Un in Singapore.

HAYES: And now a critic of the President's approach to nuclear diplomacy, Senator -- Democratic Senator Ed Markey of Massachusetts, Member the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. What do you make of all this?

MARKEY: Well, we welcome engagement with North Korea but this is one of the weakest agreements that we have ever seen. What happened here was another Kim family playbook where they pocket the rewards, pocket the benefits to North Korea while simultaneously delaying on the concessions which are made to the United States and to the rest of the world. Here they have received from President Trump an agreement that there will be a curtailment of military exercises between the South Koreans and the United States. China is already saying that this is now the signal to reduce economic sanctions on the North Koreans and we know that actually trade has been increasing with North Korea and China in the last couple of months. So from the Kim perspective going back through his father and his grandfather, this just fits in perfectly with what has been happening in their negotiations over the past. There is nothing tangible in this agreement that we can point to which will lead towards denuclearization, leads towards a verifiable inspection of nuclear and ballistic missile sites inside of that country. I want to get your reaction to what the President had to about Kim. Let me play a little bit about him talking about Kim Jong-un, his character, his leadership style. Take a listen.


TRUMP: This is going to lead to more and more and more and it's an honor to be with you, very great honor.

He's a very talented man. I also learn that he loves his country very much.

Really he's got a great personality. He's a, you know, funny guy. He's a very smart guy. He's a great negotiator. He loves his people not that I'm surprised by that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But he's starved them, he's been brutal to them, he still loves his people?

TRUMP: Look, he's doing what he's seeing done. And then if you look at it -- but I really have to go by today and by yesterday and by a couple of weeks ago because that's really when this whole thing started.

He's very talented. Anybody that takes over a situation like he did at 26 years of age and is able to run it and run it tough, I don't say it was nice or I don't say anything about it, he ran it. Very few people at that age, you can take one out of 10,000 probably couldn't do it.


HAYES: What do you make of that?

MARKEY: Well, you know, except for the fact that he's assassinated his relatives, that he's in prison tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of people in his own country, that he's been shooting ballistic missiles over Japan, detonating thermonuclear weapons, you know, he seems like a nice guy. And so what we're dealing with here is a President who at the G7 is insulting our closest allies while herein Korea he's treating Kim as though he's his buddy. But the truth is, Kim using the whole playbook that his father and grandfather used right now is smiling like a Cheshire Cat back in Pyongyang because so far there have been no concessions that had been given to Donald Trump or to the United States in this negotiation.

HAYES: There's an argument to be made that the G7 -- of the two things that happened, the G7 and this were the G7 in some ways was more significant just for what it means for the sort of enduring long-term American alliances than the sort of photo-op in Singapore. What do you think of that argument?

MARKEY: Well, at the G7, Donald Trump decided to insult Trudeau. Now the United States runs a trade surplus with Canada. Canada buys more of our goods and services than we buy from Canada. So instead of thanking the Canadians, working in a cooperative fashion with the Canadians, he insults Trudeau instead of using the G7 as a way to isolate China which is engaging in predatory international trading policy. And so the contrast between this insulting of our friends who are with us on every issue around the world and the cozying up to Kim while receiving no real concessions is a very troubling picture of a president who clearly is unprepared for the negotiations with our friends or with our foes and it does not pretend well for the future of his negotiations on any of these issues globally.

HAYES: Senator Ed Markey, thank you for your time tonight.

MARKEY: You're welcome.

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