Trump claims he was 'sticking up for' Biden with 'low IQ' comment

President TrumpDonald John TrumpMark Kelly clinches Democratic Senate nod in Arizona Trump camp considering White House South Lawn for convention speech: reports Longtime Rep. Lacy Clay defeated in Missouri Democratic primary MORE on Tuesday offered what appeared to be a tongue-in-cheek defense of his criticism of former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenMark Kelly clinches Democratic Senate nod in Arizona Hillicon Valley: NSA warns of new security threats | Teen accused of Twitter hack pleads not guilty | Experts warn of mail-in voting misinformation Biden offers well wishes to Lebanon after deadly explosion MORE while traveling in Japan, which triggered bipartisan blowback against the president.

“I was actually sticking up for Sleepy Joe Biden while on foreign soil. Kim Jong UnKim Jong UnKim: North Korea's nuclear weapons will prevent war The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Rep. Angie Craig says we need an equitable distribution plan for an eventual vaccine that reaches all communities; Moderna vaccine enters phase 3 trial in US today North Korea declares state of emergency due to a suspected COVID-19 case MORE called him a ‘low IQ idiot,’ and many other things, whereas I related the quote of Chairman Kim as a much softer “low IQ individual.’ Who could possibly be upset with that?” the president tweeted. 

Trump appeared to be responding to Biden’s presidential campaign, which earlier Tuesday blasted the president for agreeing with the North Korean leader’s criticism of his potential 2020 White House rival as having a “low IQ.”

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Biden campaign official Kate Bedingfield called Trump’s attacks “beneath the dignity of the office” and said “to be on foreign soil, on Memorial Day, and to side repeatedly with a murderous dictator against a fellow American and former vice president speaks for itself.”

Trump has repeatedly hammered Biden as the former vice president has solidified his position at the top of the Democratic presidential primary field. But Trump's latest comments drew pointed criticism because he made them while overseas, his latest violation of the norm that domestic politics stop at the water’s edge.

“Kim Jong Un made a statement that Joe Biden is a low-IQ individual. He probably is, based on his record. I think I agree with him on that,” Trump said during a press conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Trump first stated his agreement with Kim’s attack on Biden in a Saturday tweet in which he brushed aside North Korea’s short-range missile test that was condemned by the U.S. and its allies.

“North Korea fired off some small weapons, which disturbed some of my people, and others, but not me. I have confidence that Chairman Kim will keep his promise to me, & also smiled when he called Swampman Joe Biden a low IQ individual, & worse. Perhaps that’s sending me a signal?” Trump tweeted.