Georgia Governor Rips Trump for Praising Kim Jong Un

Republican Georgia Governor Brian Kemp is lashing out at former President Donald Trump for praising North Korean supreme leader Kim Jong Un.

During his presidency, Trump repeatedly touted his warm relationship with Kim, holding personal meetings with the notorious dictator on three occasions and saying that they “fell in love” with each other.

In a misspelled Truth Social post on Friday, the former president congratulated Kim for North Korea’s recent admission to the World Health Organization (WHO) executive board, writing “Congratulations to Kim Jung Un!”

Kemp, who has been repeatedly attacked by Trump since failing to overturn President Joe Biden’s Georgia win in the 2020 presidential election, denounced Trump while sharing a screenshot of the post to Twitter hours later.

Brian Kemp Donald Trump Kim Jon Un
Georgia Governor Brian Kemp, left, is pictured in Atlanta on November 8, 2022, while former President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, right, are shown in Panmunjom, Korea, on June 30, 2019. Kemp on Friday denounced Trump for congratulating Kim for North Korea’s admission to the World Health Organization’s executive board.

“Taking our country back from Joe Biden does not start with congratulating North Korea’s murderous dictator,” Kemp wrote.

Newsweek has reached out via email to the office of Trump for comment.

During his time in office, Trump stood alone among Western leaders by offering praise for Kim. The former president was also in the minority this week for applauding the decision to award North Korea a spot on the WHO executive board.

International human rights lawyer Hillel Neuer called the move “an absurd episode” in a tweet this week, bemoaning that “one of the world’s most horrific regimes is now a part of a group that sets and enforces the standards and norms for the global governance of health care.”

According to journalist Bob Woodward, Trump’s affinity for Kim began after the pair exchanged “love letters” prior to their initial summit in 2018, which was the first-ever meeting between top leaders of the U.S. and North Korea.

“You meet a woman. In one second, you know whether or not it’s all going to happen,” Trump said during an interview for Woodward’s book Rage, comparing his encounter with the dictator to a date.

“It doesn’t take you 10 minutes, and it doesn’t take you six weeks,” he added. “It’s like, whoa. OK. You know? It takes somewhat less than a second.”

The former president’s animosity toward Kemp and other Republican officials who did not support his false claims of massive election fraud in Georgia rapidly increased in the weeks and months following his 2020 loss.

Last year, Trump promoted GOP primary challengers to both Kemp and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, whom he famously asked to “find 11,780 votes” to overturn his loss to Biden during a January 2021 phone call.

Kemp and Raffensperger both easily defeated their Trump-backed Republican challengers and went on to win in the 2022 general election.

After Kemp beat Trump-endorsed candidate David Perdue by more than 50 percentage points, the ex-president promoted an evidence-free theory that the governor’s victory was due to massive voter fraud.