President Donald Trump’s first address to the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday prompted a mix of praise and condemnation from U.S. politicians and world leaders.
A packed room of international diplomats listened as the president peddled his “America First” agenda, pushed for U.N. reform and issued another stern warning to North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, who Trump called a “rocket man [on] a suicide mission.”
Many Democrats criticized Trump for his bombastic rhetoric against North Korea and his suggestion that he would not renew the Iranian nuclear deal.
Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) called Trump’s remarks “dangerous,” and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) accused the president of using the U.N. to “threaten war.”
Dangerous rhetoric & abdication of values from Pres Trump at #UNGA. Congress must stand by the Iran deal & work to deescalate tensions w/ NK
— Rep. Barbara Lee (@RepBarbaraLee) September 19, 2017
Others, mostly Republicans, commended Trump for showing leadership, including former U.S. ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton.
Former GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who has criticized Trump over his rhetoric in the past, called the speech “strong and needed.”
President Trump gave a strong and needed challenge to UN members to live up
to its charter and to confront global challenges.
— Mitt Romney (@MittRomney) September 19, 2017
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) didn’t listen to Trump’s address live, but said he was “glad” the president made the “rocket man” comment.
“Well, good for him,” Hatch told reporters. “I’m glad he said that. It’s about time that somebody talked turkey on that little bastard over there.”
World leaders also weighed in on Trump’s comments, which threatened action against the Venezuelan government if the country continues on a “path to impose authoritarian rule”
Jorge Arreaza, Venezuela’s foreign minister, accused Trump of injecting “racist and supremacist” theory into his speech.
“We do not accept threats from President Trump or whoever in this world,” Arreaza said in a statement. “We are people of peace, peaceful people, and we want relations of mutual respect.”
He continued: “This racist and supremacist theory which he’s exposing, this return to the Cold War, for a moment we didn’t know if we were listening to President Reagan in 1982 or President Trump in 2017.”
But Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tweeted praise for Trump, claiming he…