He may be the president now, but when Donald Trump met with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un in Singapore, the mogul couldn’t resist returning to his real estate roots.
While many Americans at home were still asleep in their beds in the early morning hours of Tuesday, Trump, 71, reflected on the historic summit — and North Korea’s real estate potential — in a press conference in Singapore.
“North Korea has great beaches,” Trump told reporters. “You see that whenever they’re exploding cannons into the ocean. I said, ‘Boy, look at that view. Wouldn’t that make a great condo?’ “
Trump said he advised Kim that instead of pursuing his nuclear ambitions, he should build “the best hotels in the world” on North Korea’s coastline to boost the country’s economy.
“Think of it from a real estate perspective,” Trump said.
The president added that Kim seemed interested in a video he was shown presenting possible economic projects that could take place in North Korea if it does in fact denuclearize.
“Although I tell you what, he looked at that tape, he looked at that iPad, and I’m telling you they really enjoyed it I believe,” Trump said.
In his solo press conference, which lasted more than an hour, the president also announced that North Korea has agreed to give up its nuclear weapons program and said he believed the “very talented” Kim would follow through on his promise to denuclearize in exchange for economic assistance. But Trump admitted that he “may be wrong” about the North Korean dictator.
“I mean, I may stand before you in six months and say, ‘Hey I was wrong,’ ” Trump said, before adding, “I don’t know that I’ll ever admit that, but I’ll find some kind of an excuse.”
As Trump hailed the summit as a success, critics pointed out that his agreement with Kim cites only intentions to denuclearize, without giving any specifics about how that will happen.
Others criticized Trump for praising Kim despite his “rule of brutality, torture, dictatorship, suppression and economic ruin.”
Republican strategist Mike Murphy chalked the meeting up to a “legitimizing win” for the North Korean regime. “And we got nothing for it,” he said. “No concessions to earn a bilateral summit.”
And CNN’s Jim Acosta, who was covering the summit in Singapore, suggested that Trump seemed more concerned with optics than anything else.
“Trump and Kim just allowed Singapore government TV cameras into their lunch but not WH pool,” Acosta tweeted. “Trump said to Host TV: ‘Are you getting a nice photo… So we look nice and handsome and beautiful and perfect?’ “