WASHINGTON — Contradicting President Donald Trump, Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, said that she found North Korea's recent missile tests "very disturbing" in an appearance on CNN's "State of the Union" on Sunday morning.
"I find them very disturbing, and certainly wouldn't trust Kim Jong Un," Ernst said. "I think we need to keep our eyes on North Korea. I understand the president wants to maintain a relationship with North Korea, so that we can work with them; however, those strikes are disturbing."
The totalitarian country conducted several short-range missile tests at the beginning of May. National Security Advisor John Bolton told reporters on Saturday that the tests violated U.N. Security Council resolutions on weapons tests.
“I think Japan does have reason to be concerned, and I am concerned as well," Erst continued. "We need to see North Korea back off of those activities, and we need to take a very strong stance on that. Understanding the president has a job to do in negotiating but we do need to push back on North Korea,”
"U.N. Security Council resolutions prohibit North Korea from firing any ballistic missiles. In terms of violating U.N. Security Council resolutions, there is no doubt about that,” he said.
Trump contradicted Bolton in a Saturday night tweet, writing that the launches of "small weapons" only "disturbed some of my people, and others, but not me." Trump also appeared to agree with North Korean state media's assessment of former Vice President Joe Biden as "low IQ" individual.
Trump has spoken favorably of the North Korean dictator, saying in September last year that the two "fell in love" because of the "beautiful letters" that Kim sent Trump.
North Korea fired off some small weapons, which disturbed some of my people, and others, but not me. I have confidence that Chairman Kim will keep his promise to me, & also smiled when he called Swampman Joe Biden a low IQ individual, & worse. Perhaps that’s sending me a signal?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 26, 2019
Some Republican lawmakers have been critical of the president's comments.
Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., tweeted on Sunday morning that "It’s Memorial Day Weekend and you’re taking a shot at Biden while praising a dictator. This is just plain wrong.'
It’s Memorial Day Weekend and you’re taking a shot at Biden while praising a dictator. This is just plain wrong. https://t.co/2ONOGEmy39— Adam Kinzinger (@RepKinzinger) May 26, 2019
Contributing: Doug Stanglin
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: GOP senator contradicts Trump on North Korean missile tests: 'I find them very disturbing'