Pence: Trump’s Willing to Walk from N. Korean Talks But ‘We Hope for Better’
MacCALLUM: "--reports that the president is concerned that if it fails or it doesn't go well it could be very embarrassing to have gone this far down the road and that he is seeking input as to whether or not he should maybe rethink this whole thing."
PENCE: "I felt I don't think President Trump is thinking about public relations. He's thinking about peace. He's thinking about how we achieve what has eluded successive American administrations. Truthfully, the Clinton administration, even the bush Administration got played in the past. We offered concessions to the north Korean regime in exchange for promises to end their nuclear weapons programs only to see them break those promises and abandon them. It would be a great mistake for Kim Jong un to think he could play Donald Trump."
MacCALLUM: "Clearly the president is still willing to walk away."
PENCE: "There's no question, but we hope for better. We really hope that Kim Jong un will seize the opportunity to dismantle his nuclear weapons program and do so by peaceable means. There was some talk about the Libya model last week and as the president made clear, this will only end like the Libya model ended if Kim Jong un doesn't make a deal."
MacCALLUM: "Some people saw that as a threat."
PENCE: "I think it's more of a fact. President Trump made it clear the United States of America under his leadership is not going to tolerate the regime in North Korea possessing nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles that threaten the United States and our allies. We've made it clear that we are continuing to bring economic and diplomatic pressure to bear on North Korea that all options are on the table to achieve that end, but that being said, we've seen great progress in recent months. Last month's inter-Korean summit where you saw the leaders of north and south meet at the blue house, have that discussion. The reality is that we hope for a peaceable solution. The president remains open to a summit taking place and will continue to pursue that path even while we stand strong on the objective of denuclearization in the extreme pressure campaign that is underway today."