Biden to NATO allies: Don't take Trump seriously

Vice President Biden on Tuesday called on North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) allies not to take Donald TrumpDonald TrumpWhat blue wave? A close look at Texas today tells of a different story Democrats go down to the wire with Manchin Trump's former bodyguard investigated in NY prosectors' probe: report MORE seriously when the Republican presidential nominee talks about scaling back U.S. support for the group.

"Our sacred honor is at stake. The fact that you occasionally hear something from a presidential candidate in the other party – it’s nothing [that] should be taken seriously, because I don’t think he understands what Article 5 is," Biden told reporters in Riga, Latvia.
 
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"There is continued, overwhelming, bipartisan agreement in the United States of America, both political parties, to maintain our commitment to NATO," he added.
 
Biden met with Latvian President Raimonds Vējonis on Tuesday and discussed last month's NATO summit in Warsaw, Poland, according to the White House.
 
Biden told members of the media that the U.S. commitment to NATO was reaffirmed in Warsaw, saying any concern the U.S. is somehow disengaged is "simply not true."
 
"I want to make it clear, absolutely clear to all the people of the Baltic states, we have pledged our sacred honor, the United States of America, our sacred honor to the NATO Treaty and Article 5. We mean what we say, we have never reneged on any commitment we have made," Biden said, according to a pool report.
 
Article 5 refers to the promise among members that an attack on one NATO nation is considered an attack on all of them.
 
Trump has caught flak from members of his own party over his push for conditions on helping NATO allies. Trump has long said that the U.S. spends a "fortune" on the decades-old alliance.
 
Trump told The New York Times last month that he wouldn't adhere to Article 5 unless "they fulfill their obligations to us."
 
Trump has called for NATO's 28 members to pay their fair share of the military alliance. Five members currently meet the goal of spending at least 2 percent of gross domestic product on defense, including Estonia.
 
The presidents of Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania offered a show of support with Biden on Tuesday, and Biden welcomed Latvia's push to increase its defense spending to 2 percent of GDP by 2018, the White House said.
 
"We have a common resolve to stand for our values and do it wherever necessary by whatever means it takes and for us we have never doubted in Article 5," said Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves.