Senator Chuck Grassley is celebrating the safe return of two American journalists who’d been held in North Korea, but Grassley worries about the trip former President Bill Clinton had to make to gain their release.
"First of all, we ought to be very thankful that these two young girls are home safely," Grassley says. "In the process of that happening, a former president of the United States doing that enhances the credibility of Kim Jong-il…The biggest and meanest dictator in the world should not have that sort of recognition."
Grassley, a Republican, uses the word "sad" to describe the situation in North Korea.
"Particularly when they’re shooting missiles into the air, particularly when they’re trying to develop a nuclear bomb, particularly when they have people starving to death and all that," Grassley says. "We should be cognizant of the negative things that go along with the good thing that President Clinton did."
According to Grassley, the North Korean government has lied to three presidents — Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama — and Grassley says it’s unfortunate former President Clinton met face-to-face with Kim Jong-il before the North Korean leader pardoned the American journalists.
"They always say they’re going to do things and then they never do them, so they’re outright liars and we shouldn’t give our blessing to that sort of a guy, and in a sense, that’s what you do when you have a former president having audience with him."