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Pence criticizes 'baseless attacks' on Trump following Sen. Corker's WWIII comments

  • Vice President Mike Pence defends President Donald Trump from "baseless attacks," without mentioning a specific attack.
  • His statement follows Sen. Bob Corker's comment that Trump could lead the United States down the path to World War III.
  • Corker, who is not seeking re-election next year, has criticized the president's tweeted threats and foreign policy pronouncements.

Vice President Mike Pence on Monday defended his boss from what he called "empty rhetoric" and "baseless attacks."

Pence's statement — which does not specifically mention Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn. — comes after the senator said President Donald Trump's reckless threats could lead the United States "on the path to World War III." The vice president highlighted what he deemed the foreign policy successes of the administration, claiming Trump has "restored the credibility of American power."

He said "no amount of criticism at home can diminish those results."

Pence's statement appears to magnify the White House's public spat with Corker, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman who is not seeking re-election next year. After Corker said some of Trump's Cabinet members separated the country from "chaos," the president this weekend claimed Corker "begged" him for his endorsement before deciding not to run when Trump denied the request. The senator's office has disputed that account.

Corker responded that the White House "has become an adult day care center."

Corker has questioned the threats and policy pronouncements the president makes on Twitter. He told The New York Times that most of his GOP colleagues agree with him.

"Look, except for a few people, the vast majority of our caucus understands what we're dealing with here," he told the newspaper, adding, "of course they understand the volatility that we're dealing with and the tremendous amount of work that it takes by people around him to keep him in the middle of the road."

In tweets, Trump has repeatedly hinted at using military force on North Korea if it threatens the U.S. or its allies. Earlier this month, he also said he told Secretary of State Rex Tillerson he is "wasting his time" negotiating with Pyongyang about ending its nuclear and missile programs.

Trump has also used the social media platform to make pronouncements on the Iran nuclear deal, which he will decide this week whether to decertify.

In his statement, Pence contended that the White House's efforts to defeat the terror group ISIS, put economic and diplomatic pressure on North Korea and get NATO allies to pay more for defense show the success of Trump's foreign policy.