White House National Security Adviser John Bolton didn’t want to give his own opinion on President Donald Trump’s controversial comments about North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un.
Last week, the president said at a press conference that he takes the dictator “at his word” that he had nothing to do with the suspected torture and subsequent death of American prisoner Otto Warmbier.
“Look, the president made it very clear he considers what happened to Otto Warmbier an act of brutality that’s completely unacceptable to the American side,” Bolton told CNN host Jake Tapper on Sunday.
But the president never specifically but the blame on Kim, which many lawmakers and Warmbier’s family said the blame is to fall.
“The president takes him at his word, that’s what I think,” Bolton said of Trump’s trust of Kim. “My opinion doesn’t matter,” he added, arguing that his position doesn’t allow for making decisions.
Watch the video below:
National Security Adviser John Bolton on if he agrees with Trump taking Kim Jong Un at his word that he did not have knowledge on Otto Warmbier: "My opinion doesn't matter. … I am not the national security decision maker, that's his view" #CNNSOTU https://t.co/EXjQaTBLS5 pic.twitter.com/HBvvtrlmgC
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) March 3, 2019
Trump’s refusal to directly blame the North Korean dictator for the death of an American citizen outraged Republican and Democratic lawmakers alike. Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-N.J.) announced Monday that he would introduce a resolution to Congress that will hold North Korea and Kim Jon Un responsible for Warmbier’s death.
As for Bolton, he flat-out refused to give an opinion on the matter that didn’t align with the president.
“I don’t know one expert on North Korea that thinks anything could have happened to Otto Warmbier without Kim Jon Un knowing about it ahead of time, do you disagree?” Tapper asked the national security adviser.
“Good for them,” he replied.
“I give my advice to the president,” he later added. “I give my opinions to the president, he makes up his own mind, that’s why he’s president.”