GOP senator: Trump sitting down with Kim not ‘pretty’ but ‘necessary’ to stop nuclear threat

GOP senator: Trump sitting down with Kim not ‘pretty’ but ‘necessary’ to stop nuclear threat
© Keren Carrion

Sen. Tom CottonThomas (Tom) Bryant CottonHillicon Valley: Supreme Court takes up Apple case | Senate votes to block ZTE deal | Officials testify on Clinton probe report | Russia's threat to undersea cables | Trump tells Pentagon to create 'space force' | FCC begins T-Mobile, Sprint deal review Senate votes to block Trump's ZTE deal On The Money — Sponsored by Prudential — Trump nominates budget official Kraninger for consumer chief | Senate votes to block Trump ZTE deal | Stocks fall on trade tensions | House panel moves to markup budget MORE (R-Ark.) said on Tuesday that President TrumpDonald John Trump20 weeks out from midterms, Dems and GOP brace for surprises Sessions responds to Nazi comparisons: 'They were keeping the Jews from leaving' Kim Jong Un to visit Beijing this week MORE's summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was not a pretty sight, but noted it was a necessary part of the president's job to meet with adversaries. 

"There is a school of thought that the United States should not sit down, that the United States president should not sit down with two-bit dictators. I think there’s some validity to that school of thought with the exception once those dictators have nuclear weapons," Cotton told conservative talk-show host Hugh Hewitt. 

"You know, countries like Iran and Cuba and other two-bit rogue regimes don’t have nuclear weapons, yet. They can’t threaten the United States in that way. Once North Korea had nuclear weapons, once they have missiles that can deliver them to use, I would liken it to past presidents sitting down with Soviet dictators," he continued. 

"It’s not something that we should celebrate. It’s not a pretty sight. But it’s a necessary part of the job to try to protect Americans from a terrible threat." 

Cotton's comments come hours after Trump became the first sitting U.S. president to meet face-to-face with a North Korean leader. 

Trump and Kim signed a joint statement on Tuesday making a broad commitment for the U.S. to provide North Korea with “security guarantees” in return for denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

The president praised his North Korean counterpart after the summit, referring to Kim as a “talented man” who loves his country very much." 

"A worthy negotiator ... a very worthy, very smart negotiator. We had a terrific day and we learned a lot about each other and our countries," Trump said.