Ryan backs away from Trump's praise for Hussein
© Getty Images

Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanUnscripted Trump keeps audience guessing in Rose Garden Coulter defends Paul Ryan: This is 100 percent Trump's fault The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Kidney Care Partners — Trump escalates border fight with emergency declaration MORE pushed back on Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump nominates ambassador to Turkey Trump heads to Mar-a-Lago after signing bill to avert shutdown CNN, MSNBC to air ad turned down by Fox over Nazi imagery MORE’s praise of Saddam Hussein on Tuesday night, calling the late dictator “evil.”

ADVERTISEMENT

“He was one the 20th century’s most evil people,” Ryan said in an interview with Fox News Channel’s “The Kelly File” when asked about Trump's comment from earlier that night. “He was up there. He committed mass genocide against his own people using chemical weapons.”

Shortly before the interview aired, Trump gave a shout out to Saddam Hussein at a Raleigh, N.C., rally, praising the former Iraqi dictator's anti-terrorism tactics.

“Saddam Hussein was a bad guy,” Trump said. “But you know what he did well? He killed terrorists. He did that so good. They didn’t read them the rights, they didn’t talk. They were a terrorist, it was over.”

“Today, Iraq is Harvard for terrorism.”