Leaked: Dick Cheney told Mike Pence he worries Trump’s foreign policy has shades of Obama – Washington Examiner
Former Vice President Dick Cheney and current Vice President Mike Pence went head-to-head over President Trump’s foreign policy over the weekend.
During a private event hosted by the American Enterprise Institute, Cheney said, “We’re getting into a situation when our friends and allies around the world that we depend upon are going to lack confidence in us,” according to a transcript obtained by the Washington Post.
“I worry that the bottom line of that kind of an approach is we have an administration that looks a lot more like Barack Obama than Ronald Reagan,” Cheney said.
In particular, Cheney said he was troubled by the Trump administration’s decision to eliminate joint U.S. military exercises conducted with South Korea. Pence vowed eliminating the exercises “will not affect our readiness in South Korea.”
Cheney cited a Bloomberg News report that said Trump decided “to pursue a policy that would insist that the Germans, the Japanese, and the South Koreans pay total cost for our deployments there, plus 50 percent on top of that.” The policy, he said, sounded like a “New York State real estate deal.”
Cheney also called into question Trump’s attitude toward the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, saying Trump’s behavior “feeds this notion on the part of our allies overseas, especially in NATO, that we’re not long for that continued relationship, that we’re looking eagerly to find ways where somebody else will pick up the tab.” Multiple reports have been published recently claiming that Trump has signaled an interest privately in withdrawing from NATO.
Pence fired back.
“I think there is a tendency by critics of the president and our administration to conflate the demand that our allies live up to their word and their commitments and an erosion in our commitment to the post-World War II order,” Pence said.
“But we think it’s possible to demand that your allies do more to provide for the common defense of all of our nations and, at the same time, reaffirm our strong commitment — whether it be to the trans-Atlantic Alliance or to our allies across the Indo-Pacific,” Pence said.