The New York Times' Bret Stephens compares Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to Pol Pot

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
(Image credit: MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

The New York Times' conservative op-ed columnist Bret Stephens ruled Rex Tillerson "a nominee for worst secretary of state ever" on Morning Joe on Tuesday, throwing in a comparison to Cambodian dictator Pol Pot for good measure, Mediaite reports.

"The State Department is also part of the machinery of government and that machinery has to run in order for normal things to happen like having relationships with foreign countries or having consular services for U.S. people, or doing all the things the State Department has to do, " Stephens told the Morning Joe hosts. "And Tillerson seems to be of a kind of Maoist school, in which it's — maybe it's Pol Pot."

"Wow," Scarborough jumped in. "If that is in fact the case, that is like one of the worst secretaries of state of all time."

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"I don't mean killing fields," Stephens was quick to clarify. Catch up on what he did mean below. Jeva Lange

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