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Republicans Want Opportunity to Vote on Trump's Promises to Kim
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13 Jun 2018 05:29 PM EST

By Laura Tucker, Staff writer; Image: Sen. Mitch McConnell (Image source: Public domain)


With Donald Trump riding the wave of celebration the past few days after his successful summit with Kim Jong Un, Republicans want him to back up a bit. They'd like the opportunity to weigh in on the agreement that was made between Kim and Trump. 

Trump and Kim left the summit in Singapore with a signed agreement regarding North Korea's denuclearization and the U.S. agreeing to provide security and to stop its "war games" with South Korea. The two definitely left Singapore on a high.


But no one really knows how much they can trust a dictator like Kim. There were no specifics from the man Trump has called "a very good negotiator" regarding the denuclearization, the length of the agreement, etc. 

"If the president reaches a significant agreement with North Korea, I hope it takes the form of a treaty," said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY). "Which route that the administration takes will be up to them, but I do believe it will need to come to Congress in some form."


It seems he wants input on this deal as well, but Sen. Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and other Democrats don't even think it's at that stage yet for Congress to vote on it. He thinks it's still too early. 

And this is after the GOP were upset when former President Barack Obama didn't bring the 2015 Iran nuclear deal in as a treaty and resorted to signed legislation. Republicans felt he was bucking the requisite process. They are hoping Trump won't do the same and will go for something that a future president can't just disregard, as he did himself with Obama's Iran deal.


"I think the lesson" of the Iran deal, said Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX), "is that if you try to do things unilaterally or just with the executive branch, that they don't last long." 

He added that he's "not hung up on the form" that Trump goes with to submit the deal, "but I do think it's important that Congress give it the Good Housekeeping seal of approval because I think that would ensure longevity."


Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) agrees a treaty is needed. "Again, let's do a deal that does complete, verifiable, irreversible dismantlement, and I have a hard time not believing that thing's going to be ratified," he said. "And if it can't be ratified, there's probably something wrong with the deal." 

Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS) is weary of the way Trump is praising Kim, saying it "isn't, certainly, the way I would describe a dictator, despot, tyrant." Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) wonders if Trump's flattery of Kim was for strategic reasons.


"I think he's just trying to create the conditions where there's some rapport between them," reasons Cornyn. "And if that's what it takes to get a deal to denuclearize North Korea, I think it's worth it." 

Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) would like to see the deal be more "treaty-based" as well but is uncomfortable with the agreement to move U.S. troops out of South Korea. "As far as moving troops off the Korean Peninsula? We need to stay there," she suggested.

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