Incoming Dem lawmaker on Trump's Saudi Arabia defense: 'You can’t buy a moral compass,' but you can 'buy a President'

Incoming Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar (Minn.) tore into President TrumpDonald TrumpMore than two-thirds of Americans approve of Biden's coronavirus response: poll Sarah Huckabee Sanders to run for governor Mexico's president tests positive for COVID-19 MORE over his handling of Saudi Arabia in response to the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

“Once again, our President proves that you can’t buy a moral compass,” Omar tweeted Tuesday. “And Saudi Arabia proves that you can, on the other hand, buy a President.”

Trump on Tuesday issued a statement casting doubt on the U.S. intelligence community’s conclusions that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was involved in Khashoggi’s death.

In the statement, Trump defended maintaining the U.S.-Saudi relationship as an “America first” position, and stated that “we may never know” who is responsible for the journalist's killing.


“Our intelligence agencies continue to assess all information, but it could very well be that the Crown Prince had knowledge of this tragic event – maybe he did and maybe he didn’t!” Trump said.

Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist and critic of the government in Riyadh, was killed by a team of agents in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul last month, and the CIA has reportedly concluded that the crown prince ordered the assassination.

Trump indicated that the Saudis would not face severe punishment for Khashoggi’s death. The Trump administration announced that it imposed sanctions on 17 Saudis accused of coordinating the killing.

The response has drawn criticism from lawmakers, including some top Republicans. Retiring Sen. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerGOP lawmaker patience runs thin with Trump tactics Former GOP senator: Republicans cannot let Trump's 'reckless' post-election claims stand Cornyn: Relationships with Trump like 'women who get married and think they're going to change their spouse' MORE (R-Tenn.) blasted Trump for acting like “a public relations firm for the crown prince.”