While speaking at a rally in West Virginia for Republican Senate candidate and state attorney general Patrick Morrisey, Trump told the roaring crowd that he and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un “fell in love.”
“We are doing great. That was a big, big problem,” Trump told the crowd. “I was really being tough and so was he, and we would go back and forth. And then we fell in love. No, really. He wrote me beautiful letters.”
Trump reiterated to the crowd that Obama told him a year and a half ago when he took office that North Korea was the single biggest threat to the United States. The current president added that he had addressed the issue.
Trump also joked about the criticism he would get from the news media for making a comment some would consider “un-presidential” and for being so positive about the North Korean leader.
“Why has President Trump given up so much?” Trump said in a mock “news anchor” voice. “I didn’t give up anything.”
“They’ll say, ‘Donald Trump said they fell in love, how horrible,'” the president added.
Trump has openly lauded the North Korean leader since the two hosted a summit in June to discuss North Korea’s nuclear arsenal. This past Tuesday, Trump thanked Kim for his “courage” at the UN General Assembly.
“I would like to thank Chairman Kim for his courage and for the steps he has taken, though much work remains to be done,” he said.
While Trump hinted at the possibility of a second meeting between the two leaders, North Korean officials aren’t quite so positive.
More than three months after the June summit in Singapore, North Korea’s top diplomat, Ri Yong Ho, told world leaders at the UN General Assembly on Saturday that his country hasn’t seen a “corresponding response” from the U.S. to North Korea’s early disarmament moves. Instead, he noted, the U.S. is continuing sanctions aimed at keeping up pressure on North Korea.
Trump took a much more optimistic view in his rally speech.
“We’re doing great with North Korea,” he said. “We were going to war with North Korea. Millions of people would have been killed. Now we have this great relationship.”