GOP lawmaker: Trump’s ‘fire and fury’ comments not increasing North Korea tensions

Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.) says he doesn't think President Trump's "fire and fury" comments are increasing tensions with North Korea.

"I don't think they're increasing tensions at all," Cole said early Thursday on CNN's "New Day."

"Frankly, I think he meant to be crystal clear to the North Koreans and I think that was probably a good thing."

Trump made his point "very clearly," Cole added.

"The North Koreans should understand that they engage in provocative actions, that there'll be consequences to that."

Trump earlier this week made a dire warning to North Korea's leader, Kim Jong Un.

"He has been very threatening beyond a normal state, and as I said they will be met with fire, fury and frankly power, the likes of which this world has never seen before,” Trump said at his golf club in Bedminster, N.J.

Trump ramped up his rhetoric one day later, touting the strength of the U.S. nuclear arsenal.

In a series of tweets on Wednesday, Trump said he hopes the "power" of the U.S. nuclear arsenal would never have to be used, but he added that "there will never be a time that we are not the most powerful nation in the world."

After Trump's initial comments, North Korea raised the possibility of missile strikes on Guam.

Cole on Thursday said he thinks Trump's comments also likely sent a message to China.

"He's had more success than anybody else in getting the Chinese to take this seriously," he said.