In a pointed tweet at the Democratic Party’s 2020 frontrunner on Wednesday, Donald Trump Jr. said that it was no surprise that former Vice President Joe Biden was continuing to deny the threat posed by China. Indeed, Don Jr. said, Biden had about 1.5 billion reasons to dismiss the Chinese government as harmless.
“Well, his son took $1.5 BILLION from the Chinese govt, so I’m sure he’s incentivized to pretend they’re not a threat,” Trump Jr. wrote. “Of course no one with a brain believed it, but media won’t cover it because Joe’s their guy and always gets a pass despite his 50 years of failures in government.”
The president’s son lobbed the allegation against Biden after the frontrunner appeared in New Hampshire to dismiss the administration’s concerns about China’s economic threat to U.S. interests.
“We’re in a position where we have the most agile venture capitalists in the world,” Biden said. “Our workers are literally three times productive as workers in the far east — excuse me — in Asia. So what are we worried about?”
This is not the first time that Biden has downplayed the threat from China’s expanding economy. In remarks to Iowa voters last month, Biden said, “Come on, man. They can’t even figure out how to deal with the fact that they have this great division between the China Sea and the mountains in the east – I mean in the west. They can’t figure out how they are going to deal with the corruption that exists within the system. I mean, you know, they’re not bad folks, folks. But guess what, they’re not competition for us.”
Well, that certainly sounds like a coherent and well-developed theory.
“He’s running around saying that China is not a threat,” Trump Jr. said at a rally last month. “Guess what boys and girls? China has been stealing the American dream from all of you, from your kids, from your grandkids for decades, and this clown doesn’t think it’s a problem? No. You know why? Because his son took $1.5 billion into his hedge fund from the Chinese!”
Biden’s theory of Chinese-American relations sounds a lot like his boss’s refusal to recognize Russia as a threat during the 2012 elections. That was, of course, before Russia annexed Crimea, threatened the sovereignty of Ukraine, shot down a Malaysian airliner, and interfered in the 2016 American elections. How much damage is China poised to do over the next four years if left unchecked? Are we really going to hand the keys to that question over to a guy who is at best naïve and, at worst, hopelessly compromised?
Let’s hope not.