President Donald Trump abruptly ended his high-stakes summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on Thursday without an agreement — the United States would not bow to Kim’s demands without achieving complete denuclearization — yet Democrats and many mainstream media members gleefully gloated while dodging key realities about the president’s decision.
Trump and Kim met in Hanoi, Vietnam, for their second summit to negotiate North Korea’s complete denuclearization.
Despite the promise of the meeting, Trump ended up announcing during a press conference on Thursday that he was leaving the summit early.
“On North Korea, we just left Chairman Kim. We had a really, I think, a very productive time,” Trump said. “We thought, and I thought, and Secretary [of State Mike] Pompeo felt, that it wasn’t a good thing to be signing anything.”
“We had some options, and at this time we decided not to do any of the options. And we’ll see where that goes,” the president added. “And I think, actually, it was a very productive two days. But sometimes you have to walk — and this was just one of those times.”
Pompeo said afterward that although “we made real progress,” the group “didn’t get to something that ultimately made sense for the United States of America.”
“I think Chairman Kim was hopeful that we would. We asked him to do more. He was unprepared to do that,” Pompeo said. “But I’m still optimistic. I’m hopeful that the teams will get back together in the days and weeks ahead, and continue to work out what’s a very complex problem.”
The president said he would not remove the sanctions from North Korea until after the country made meaningful progress on its denuclearization. Kim wanted the U.S. remove the sanctions first.
Trump’s early departure from the summit cause some mainstream media members and liberals to mock him.
“So it’s strike one in Singapore, he didn’t get a deal with Kim Jong-un. Now it’s strike two in Hanoi. Once again, no deal to denuclearize North Korea, something that he staked a lot of his legacy, a lot of his presidency, on,” gloated CNN White House reporter Jim Acosta on his network.
Acosta went so far as to say that Trump was “humbled here in Hanoi” and is “heading back to Washington empty-handed.”
“And so I think when we assess all this in the hours and days and weeks ahead, I think what’s going to be clear … is that the president staked a lot of his presidency on something that is just much more difficult than reality TV,” Acosta added — weaving in his own opinion, as he often does and as Trump himself has called him out for doing.
“This is not something that could be wrapped up in a season of ‘The Apprentice,'” added Acosta.
Trump’s early departure without a deal also inspired other critics to pile on and even make “#TrumpFail” trend on Twitter.
Liberal author John Pavlovitz jeered, “The only deal @realDonaldTrump has been able to close since acquiring the presidency has been with the devil. #TrumpFail.”
— John Pavlovitz (@johnpavlovitz) February 28, 2019
LGBT activist and Human Rights Campaign communications team member Charlotte Clymer tweeted, “Donald Trump just wasted millions of dollars in taxpayer money to once again embarrass the United States on the international stage. #TrumpFail.”
— Charlotte Clymer🏳️🌈 (@cmclymer) February 28, 2019
Ed Krassenstein, co-founder of Hill Reporter, tweeted, “I wasn’t rooting for Trump to fail in North Korea. I just knew, without a doubt, that he would. #TrumpFail.”
I wasn’t rooting for Trump to fail in North Korea. I just knew, without a doubt, that he would. #TrumpFail
— Ed Krassenstein (@EdKrassen) February 28, 2019
But in a surprising turn of events, reliably harsh and frequent Trump critic Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) actually came to the president’s defense on Twitter.
“The hashtag #TrumpFail is trending and I find it inappropriate. People should not be hoping the president fails or taking pleasure in his failure on the global stage,” he wrote.
“Whether you like @realDonaldTrump or not, he represents America in foreign affairs. We want America to succeed,” Lieu added.
The hashtag #TrumpFail is trending and I find it inappropriate. People should not be hoping the President fails or taking pleasure in his failure on the global stage. Whether you like @realDonaldTrump or not, he represents America in foreign affairs. We want America to succeed.
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) February 28, 2019
And when a Twitter user replied, “When he fails, America succeeds,” Lieu doubled down.
He replied, “Not on North Korea. There are zero good military options. Diplomacy is the only viable path.”
Not on North Korea. There are zero good military options. Diplomacy is the only viable path.
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) February 28, 2019
Check out more in the video below: