🇺🇸 Biden and Xi in Bali
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📉 President Biden Job Approval: Approve 45, Disapprove 53 (Rasmussen Reports)
📉 President Biden Job Approval: Approve 39, Disapprove 57 (Reuters/Ipsos)
📉 Direction of Country: Right Direction 19, Wrong Track 66 (Reuters/Ipsos)
🐎 2022 Generic Congressional Vote: Republicans 43, Democrats 48 (Politico/Morning Consult)
Right: Biden quickly regrets making news on abortion at press conference (Fox News)
Right: Democrat Dinosaurs Like Pelosi Have No Intention Of Giving Up Power (Daily Wire)
Right: Republicans targeting Manchin in 2024 — and might already have a candidate in mind (Washington Examiner)
Left: GOP in massive turmoil — and it's delicious: Can Mitch and Kevin survive? (Salon)
Left: Democrats’ path to keep the House has gotten tougher (Vox)
Left: The Inside Story of Sean Patrick Maloney’s Face Plant in New York (Slate)
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Biden and Xi in Bali
Yesterday President Joe Biden met with Chinese President Xi on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Bali, Indonesia. This marked the first face-to-face meeting between the two leaders since Biden became president. In the past, we’ve covered the tensions between both countries concerning Taiwan.
Reporting from the Left: After meeting with Xi, Biden says there "need not be a new Cold War" between US and China (CBS News)
Reporting from the Right: Biden says Taiwan invasion by China not ‘imminent’ after Xi meeting (New York Post)
From The Flag: The meeting also comes on the heels of President Xi’s appointment to a historic third term as leader of the Chinese Communist Party. Following the high-profile meeting, here's more from both sides.
This Delicate Dance Continues, and Biden Has Few Options
- President Biden finds himself in a difficult negotiating position: he is trying to downplay Taiwan’s role in the global economy, while also vowing to defend the island nation militarily.
- The global economy is staring down a major problem with debt and potential defaults among developing nations – something Biden should press with China.
- President Xi is savvy enough to know this meeting is an attempt to gain favor with China – and avoid the invasion of Taiwan.
“Biden’s Missing Taiwan Strategy” Editorial Page, Wall Street Journal: “Who knows what Mr. Xi will conclude about the aging American president, but there’s no doubt he will probe US resolve on Taiwan. Mr. Xi comes to the meeting having been given a historic third term by the Chinese Communist Party. … (He) opposes closer US ties with the island democracy. The decision to pursue these trade negotiations is welcome. But the context is that this was a sop to Taiwan for the Biden Administration’s decision to exclude it from the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework that the President announced in May. A bipartisan group of 52 senators and 200 House Members wrote separate letters urging Taiwan’s inclusion. … Mr. Biden can’t afford to show weakness on the US commitment to Taiwan’s defense, which needs to be backed up immediately with US and allied military assets. But (he) is harming his own policy, and US interests, by lacking a credible economic strategy with Taiwan and the rest of the Asia-Pacific.”
“President Biden should raise developing country debt with Xi” Daniel F. Runde, The Hill Op-ed: “In the last 15 years, developing countries have increasingly borrowed from China and the ‘private sector’ — a diverse set of financial players. The COVID-19 shutdowns, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, food and energy price spikes, and interest rate increases in the G-7 countries all mean that we are likely going to see a wave of defaults and political instability — unless something is done now. … China has a big surplus of dollars due to its export growth strategy and needs to recycle those dollars. … (Also) China is the largest trading partner for Africa and others — so, if the IMF or the World Bank, at the instigation of the US, force a country to demand new terms for China’s debt, China could stop purchasing soybean meal from Zambia or might collect the debt by taking a port as it did in Sri Lanka.”
One more opinion piece from the Right: Biden Licks Beijing’s Boots Brandon J. Weichert, American Greatness
A Rejuvenated Biden Presses the Issue with Beijing
- President Biden entered the meeting with some wind in his sails after Democrats avoided a wipeout in the midterms.
- As the possibility of a “hot war” between the US and China increases, a meeting of this kind is a positive.
- Biden’s trade war with China aims to undermine its military capabilities but comes with numerous other risks.
“Biden has a strong hand to play at his summit with Xi Jinping” Editorial Board, Washington Post: “The surprisingly good showing for President Biden’s party in the midterm elections means Mr. Biden will have the domestic political wind at his back… Mr. Xi arrives with newly enhanced domestic standing, too, though his comes from the recent Communist Party congress’s orchestrated approval of his third five-year term in its top position — not a free election. Mr. Biden should not shy away from calling Mr. Xi’s attention to this contrast... He could suggest that China might want to rewrite some of its propaganda about the dysfunction of US democracy, now that so many participants in a free and fair vote have repudiated pro-Trump Republican election deniers at the ballot box. Bitter as the just-concluded campaign was, one thing Republicans and Democrats more or less agree on is the need for a more competitive stance toward China, geopolitically and economically.”
“Any Xi-Biden Meeting Is Positive These Days” Daniel Ten Kate, Bloomberg: “In January 2020, about six months after the last face-to-face meeting between the leaders of the world’s two biggest economies, Donald Trump described the US-China relationship as ‘the best it’s ever been.’ Ever since that moment, when the former president signed a trade deal with China, ties have spiraled downward. The outbreak of Covid-19 prompted Trump to relentlessly attack Beijing, while targeting Chinese companies and referring to the pathogen as the ‘China virus.’ When Joe Biden became president, ties somehow got worse: He’s repeatedly said US troops would intervene to defend Taiwan and banned the sale of advanced chips to China… Analysts in both countries have begun contemplating the prospect of a hot war between the predominant global powers. Against that backdrop, even the fact Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping are meeting face-to-face today on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Bali is a positive.”
One more opinion piece from the Left: Biden’s New Cold War Against China Could Backfire Eric Levitz, New York Magazine
How the People of the World View China
A survey published last month showed a majority of respondents in several Western nations believe the international community should come to Taiwan’s defense if China invades. This held true for polling conducted in the US, Britain, Sweden, Denmark, and Australia.
Meanwhile, people living in Africa are more likely to see China as mostly a “force for good.” Respondents from South Africa (61%), Kenya (82%), and Nigeria (83%) were more likely to see China in a positive light (YouGov/Cambridge Globalism Project).
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