Donald Trump Adds Saudi Arabia to List of Countries Ripping Off the U.S.

The Republican front-runner continues to call out foreign governments.

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Donald Trump delivers his closing statement during the prime time Republican presidential primary debate on August 6, 2015 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.

MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images

To hear Donald Trump tell it, the United States is not getting its money's worth in Saudi Arabia. 

Trump, who has repeatedly portrayed Mexico, Japan, and China as "ripping us off," shifted his focus to Saudi Arabia in an interview that aired Sunday on NBC's Meet the Press

“They should pay us,” Trump said of the oil rich nation. “Like it or don’t like it, people have backed Saudi Arabia. What I really mind, though, is we back it at tremendous expense. We get nothing for it.”

Trump portrayed the U.S. financial relationship with Saudi Arabia as outdated. 

"The primary reason we're with Saudi Arabia is because we need the oil," Trump said. "Now we don't need the oil so much, and if we let our people really go, we wouldn't need the oil at all and we could let everybody else fight it out."

The U.S. currently imports more than one million barrels of Saudi Arabian oil each day, according to the U.S. State Department's website

Despite his critique of the current working relationship, Trump stopped short of calling for the U.S. government to simply walk away from the Saudis, who he said would soon find themselves as a "major target" of Islamic State terrorists. 

"Saudi Arabia is going to be in big trouble pretty soon and they're going to need help, because if you look at Yemen and you look at that border, you don't have to be an expert to know that is one long border, and they're not going in for Yemen, they're going in for the oil, they're going in for Saudi Arabia, so Saudi Arabia is going to need help," Trump said. 

Throughout the interview, Trump asserted that American leaders had, for years, routinely cut bad deals with foreign governments across the globe. In the case of Saudi Arabia, that has helped the Arab nation "make a billion dollars a day," said Trump. 

“Saudi Arabia, if it weren’t for us, they wouldn’t be here,” Trump said. “They wouldn’t exist.”

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