Rhode Island lawmakers weigh-in on historic US, North Korea summit

Rhode Island politicians on both sides of the aisle are weighing-in as President Donald Trump and North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un meet for a historic summit in Singapore.

Mr. Trump is the first sitting president to meet with a leader of the Hermit Kingdom. The goal of the summit is talk about denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula.

The president and the dictator shook hands at around 9:00 a.m. local time for a brief photo-op with the press before heading into a room alone with just their translators.

Monday evening, Democratic lawmakers weighed-in on the historic summit, saying the president should proceed with caution.

"We have to be particularly careful that the North Koreans don’t do what they’ve done in the past, which is make certain promises, make certain commitments and while those negotiations continue,they’re cheating on the agreement they’ve made," said Democratic Rep. David Cicilline. "There’s a lot of work to do. I think there’s a lot of reason to be skeptical."

Meanwhile, Brandon Bell, chairman of the Rhode Island Republican Party, said the historic summit is already a victory for our 45th president.

"If Kim Jong Un doesn’t know at this point in time that we’re looking for a complete denuclearization, I’m pretty sure somebody didn’t inform him of what this was really all about," he said. "The worst that can happen is we’re back to where we were."

Democrats also criticized the president for not doing his homework before the meeting.

"Preparation has been minimal. That is something that I think should give everybody pause," said Sen. Jack Reed (D-Rhode Island).

But Bell believes it’s part of the president’s character.

"Our president does things differently. He can’t be compared to any other president," he said. "Really it’s apples and oranges."

Both parties agree that they would like to see a complete, and verifiable, denuclearization. If Mr. Trump accomplishes that, the two parties would then like to address cyber security, and human rights violations in the north.