At a fiery rally in West Virginia, President Donald Trump said that he and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un “fell in love,” The Hill reports.
At Saturday’s rally for Senate candidate and state Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, Trump touched upon his ever-changing relationship with Kim, which appears to be an emotional rollercoaster for both parties involved. Trump and Kim, the president said, “fell in love.”
“I was really being tough and so was he. And we would go back and forth. And then we fell in love. No really. He wrote me beautiful letters. They were great letters. And then we fell in love.”
The two leaders have indeed come a long way. In November, 2017, following President Trump’s speech to South Korea’s National Assembly, when he warned North Korea against underestimating the United States, North Korea’s Foreign Ministry responded by calling Trump a “dotard,” according to Vox.
“The reckless remarks by a dotard like Trump can never frighten us or put a stop to our advance,” the ministry’s statement read, echoing Kim Jong Un’s September remarks, when North Korea’s supreme leader promised to “tame the mentally deranged U.S. dotard with fire.”
In response to North Korea’s insults, President Trump took to his favorite social media platform, Twitter, to viciously attack Kim Jong Un.
“Why would Kim Jong-un insult me by calling me ‘old,’ when I would NEVER call him ‘short and fat?’ Oh well, I try so hard to be his friend – and maybe someday that will happen!” Trump tweeted.
A lot has happened since.
The relationship between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un culminated in June’s historic Singapore meeting between the two leaders. Since then, Trump and Kim have maintained correspondence, and the president has praised North Korea’s dictator publicly, on numerous occasions.
Most recently, The Hill notes, Trump praised Kim at Tuesday’s U.N. General Assembly, thanking him for his “courage.”
A second Trump-Kim summit appears to be in the works as well, since Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recently accepted an invitation to visit Pyongyang.
The relationship between Trump and Kim appears to be blossoming. The two are exchanging letters — Kim’s are “beautiful,” according to the president — maintaining regular correspondence, allowing the love to evolve.
Trump says this -- earnestly! -- about Kim Jong Un: "We went back and forth, then we fell in love. He wrote me beautiful letters. And they are great letters. We fell in love." pic.twitter.com/05KpsRgkZJ— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) September 30, 2018
While President Trump claims that he and Kim have fallen in love, outlets like Politico have pointed out — and criticized — Trump’s tendency to cozy up to dictators. President Donald Trump, according to Politico, does not just love North Korea’s Kim, but also politicians like Vladimir Putin, and other dictators.
Former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon argued, however, that President Trump simply gravitates toward strong personalities, according to CNBC.