- Former Vice President Joe Biden said he thought President Donald Trump was right to walk away from the second summit with North Korea.
- “The president did the right thing by walking away,” Biden said while visiting the University of Nebraska at Omaha on Thursday, the Lincoln Journal Star reported.
- But Biden, who is said to be considering a 2020 presidential run, also slammed the president’s approach to diplomacy.
- “Diplomacy matters; preparation matters,” he continued. “The president treats everything like it’s a real-estate deal.”
Former Vice President Joe Biden said President Donald Trump was right to walk away from his second summit with North Korea. But Biden had sharp words for the president’s brand of diplomacy.
Biden was speaking at the first Chuck Hagel Forum in Global Leadership at the University of Nebraska at Omaha on Thursday, the Lincoln Journal Star reported. He was in conversation with Hagel, a former Republican senator who was a secretary of defense during the Obama administration.
The two longtime Senate colleagues discussed the role of US leadership in global affairs.
“American leadership and engagement in the world is essential,” Biden said, according to the Journal Star. “If the US fails to lead, who will take our place?”
Biden also commented on the second US-North Korea summit, which broke down on Thursday in Vietnam without an agreement between Trump and the North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un, over what sanctions would be lifted for what degree of North Korea’s denuclearization.
The former vice president said that “hard, hard, hard and consistent diplomacy” was required for tough negotiations but added that “the president did the right thing by walking away.”
“But diplomacy matters; preparation matters,” he continued. “The president treats everything like it’s a real-estate deal.”
He characterized the first summit between Trump and Kim, last year in Singapore, where the two signed a four-point agreement calling for peace on the Korean peninsula and the denuclearization of North Korea, as a “great gift” to Kim.
“He was legitimized,” Biden said, according to the Journal Star. “This guy is a thug.”
Biden, who is said to be contemplating a presidential run in 2020, has recently been making stops at universities in Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Nebraska.