Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said in an interview that aired Sunday the U.S. does not have to accept a nuclear North Korea, encouraging investment in missile defense so Kim Jong Un knows the price of bellicose behavior “will be extinction.”
“We have really two choices,” the chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee chairman said of accepting a nuclearized Korean Peninsula and working with China to “put the brakes on” the rogue nation’s leader, Kim Jong Un.
Washington Examiner reports,
“The third option is — that we’ve got to do along with it [working with China] — is missile defense, capabilities to defend Korea. In other words, make sure that Kim Jong Un knows that if he acts in an aggressive fashion, the price will be extinction.”
North Korea conducted its sixth nuclear test last weekend, prompting the U.S. to call for a new round of international sanctions against Pyongyang.
McCain, during an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union,” also implored for better relations between the U.S. with Japan and South Korea; the latter has recently been subject to fresh trade negotiations.
In terms of domestic policy, McCain said beneficiaries of the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program should be given a pathway to citizenship, not just temporary protection from deportation, but as part of a “comprehensive plan.”
McCain, in addition, slammed the President Trump-Chuck Schumer-Nancy Pelosi debt ceiling deal as “devastating to national defense,” which caught many Republicans by surprise.
“This was not an exercise in bipartisanship,” he said. “The Republicans leaders, [House Speaker Paul] Ryan and [Senate Majority Leader Mitch] McConnell, were surprised to hear that he had cut this deal with [Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer] and [House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi].”
McCain, commenting on his brain tumor battle, said he has “more energy than ever” since starting treatment.
“The fact is, you know, I’m facing a challenge, but I’ve faced other challenges,” McCain, who was a Vietnam War prisoner of war, said. “I’m very happy. I’m very happy with my life. I’m very happy with what I’ve been able to do.”