1. SOUNDBITE (English) US Sen. Jeff Flake, Arizona Republican:
"Well, North Korea has been doing this forever. They always are bellicose in talking about what their capabilities are and what they're going to do so this is nothing new."
2. SOUNDBITE (English) US Sen. Jeff Flake, Arizona Republican:
"Obviously, this is an area of concern whenever you have a burgeoning nuclear power, we don't know exactly how close they are but our intelligence services tell us that it could be months or certainly less than a couple of years before they have the capability to reach the United States and the question has been when do we intervene, how do we try to persuade them not to take that next step and nothing we've done has worked so far so the administration is trying a little different tactic, I think, hitting back hard in terms of rhetoric and we'll see if that has any effect."
3. SOUNDBITE (English) US Sen. Jeff Flake, Arizona Republican:
"It would be tough to argue that what we've been doing has been effective. Typically, you don't have the president making those kinds of statements but I think some of us are willing to give him a little space to see if this moves them. It's been a bit of a good cop, bad cop, you've had other administrative figures, the secretary of state, dial it down a bit and we will see what works. Obviously, we've got to remedy this somehow. We can't continue to allow North Korea to go on this path so we'll see where it goes."
4. SOUNDBITE (English) US Sen. Jeff Flake, Arizona Republican:
"Well, the sanctions are more long-term, we're talking months not years, but we'll see and obviously the play here is what China does. They say they don't have as much leverage as we think they have but they certainly have more than we do and so the real play is to see what China does."
5. SOUNDBITE (English) US Sen. Jeff Flake, Arizona Republican, speaking about Trump comments regarding McConnell:
"Obviously, everybody's frustrated by the inability to get somewhere on health care reform so I think that's what's playing out. I, myself, having been in the Senate and recognizing what a difficult job the majority leader has, I don't fault him. I think that he's got a tough job and he does it well."
6. SOUNDBITE (English) US Sen. Jeff Flake, Arizona Republican, speaking about Trump comments regarding McConnell:
"I think it's always better if we can work together on those kind of things but you know, it is what it is, and in the Senate you can't compel people to vote one way. We have a diverse caucus. You have to persuade and I think the majority leader has a history of bringing people together and he does a tough job well."
In the wake of tough talk from President Donald Trump toward North Korea and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, at least one legislator says he's willing to give the president the benefit of the doubt to see if anything works.
President Trump warned Kim Jong Un's government on Thursday to "get their act together" or face extraordinary trouble, and suggested his earlier threat to unleash "fire and fury" on North Korea was too mild. He has also lambasted McConnell for not being able to get a health care bill passed in the Senate.
U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake, a Republican from Arizona and sometimes outspoken critic of Trump, said the president's rhetoric toward North Korea is unusual but worth a try.
"It would be tough to argue that what we've been doing has been effective," Flake said Thursday in an interview with The Associated Press. "Typically, you don't have the president making those kinds of statements but I think some of us are willing to give him a little space to see if this moves them."
As for the president's remarks seemingly attacking McConnell for not doing his job in getting health care legislation passed, Flake said he thinks that's just a little frustration coming from a person who is new to politics.