At a campaign stop in Wisconsin, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said he will make NATO counties, “pay up” and added, “I want them to pay delinquent because for years they haven’t been paying.”
Trump said, “But with NATO, so NATO, we are paying a tremendous amount of money for NATO and it’s not fair, folks. It’s not fair. And I would get together and I’ll say to the countries that haven’t paid and are paying not their fair share, and they know they’re getting away with murder, but why should they do it? Nobody calls and talks to them and says we’re defending you and you’re not paying. I want them to pay up. I want them to pay delinquent because for years they haven’t been paying. This isn’t like it just stopped. For many years they haven’t been paying. I want them to pay delinquent. You know, if they want to leave NATO, that’s okay with me. And frankly, if it affects NATO to the point where we’re not going to have NATO, we’ll come up with something else. Don’t worry about it. But we just have to do it. You always have to be able — in deal making, you always have to be able to walk. You have to be able to walk.
He continued, “So I took a lot of criticism. They said, here was the headline. Donald Trump wants to dissolve NATO. That’s not what I said. And I said, and this isn’t the “Washington Post.” This is others. I said, Donald Trump wants to have people pay. Donald Trump wants to adjust for terrorism, which we have to do. Donald Trump wants to do all of the things that I explained. Donald Trump wants to get all of the back money that’s owed to us by all of these countries who have had a free ride or close to a free ride. And Donald Trump wants to make the United States rich again and great again. And wants to help other nations. I want to help other nations. But we don’t want to be the fools. We don’t want to be the dumb patsies that we are all over the world, because that’s what’s happening.”
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