Friday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) discussed a private meeting he attended with GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump in Washington, D.C.
Cotton keyed in one aspect, which was Trump’s questions about NATO, which Trump had said was obsolete. Cotton didn’t say NATO should be completely ended, but he argued there were questions over NATO’s financing.
Partial transcript as follows:
WILLIE GEIST, co-host of “Morning Joe”: Senator, Nicolle mentioned a meeting with Donald Trump this week. Did you come out of that meeting more or less impressed with him than you’ve been in the past?
COTTON: Willie, the meeting occurred on Monday and I didn’t hear much different from what we’ve heard in public. He had spoken earlier that day to The Washington Post editorial board and raised serious questions about NATO. I share some of those questions. We used to split our costs 50-50 between the U.S. and Europe. Today, it’s 70-30 between the U.S. and Europe. Now, I would have a different approach. Rather than reducing our spending on what’s a critical national security alliance, I would urge European leaders to increase their spending, specifically so we can stop the kind of terrorist attacks we’ve seen in Paris and Brussels so we don’t see, in our Eastern NATO partners, Estonia and Latvia and Lithuania, the kinds of hybrid warfare that we have seen in Ukraine and Georgia. So he identified a serious problem that I’ve tried to address along with some of my colleagues. I would just have a slightly different solution.
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