Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) called out President Joe Biden for his inconsistent attitude toward the Saudi Crown Prince and his government during an interview on Fox News Friday — saying it’s hypocritical to attack the regime in public while still meeting with them to form an alliance.
“It also kind of creates the worst of both worlds.” Cotton stated on “America Reports.” “Joe Biden should have never ostracized Saudi Arabia and Mohammed bin Salman
That country has been a partner of ours for 80 years,” he continued. “And a dozen presidents going back to Franklin Delano Roosevelt found a way to work with their leaders to help provide safety and prosperity to the American people. That’s what Joe Biden should have been doing from the very beginning.”
The US’s strategic partnership with the Saudis changed after the 2018 death of US-based journalist and Saudi critic Jamal Khashoggi, who was murdered after walking into the Saudi consulate in Istanbul — an event that caused Biden to become a strong opponent of the Saudi regime, reportedly calling for it to become a “Pariah state.”
Yet Biden has course-corrected on Saudi relations recently, as gas prices and the Iran nuclear deal loom large.
He even went so far as to fist bump the crown prince in a meeting Friday, an action that caused Khashoggi’s fiance to feel betrayed, per CBS News.
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Cotton highlighted Biden’s political pivot saying it has only served to hurt America’s foreign policy agenda.
“By going down this path, by calling it a ‘pariah state’ and saying that he wouldn’t meet with the crown prince – the de facto day-to-day ruler of Saudi Arabia — he only probably antagonizes the Saudis more,” Cotton added. “And then he still turns around and meets with them when he is there. He should just say, as a dozen presidents for 80 years have said, that Saudi Arabia is an important partner of the United States.”
The Arkansas Republican concluded, “It’s an important force for stability with our other friends to include Israel in a region when Iran is threatening us all, and trying to work with them to defend the interests of the American people.”