PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP CLAIMS CHINA’S HANDLING OF THE PANDEMIC IS PROOF THAT BEIJING “WILL DO ANYTHING THEY CAN” TO MAKE HIM LOSE HIS RE-ELECTION BID. HE ALSO BELIEVES CHINA WANTS JOE BIDEN TO WIN.
Beijing hoping for Biden win, president alleges
WASHINGTON • U.S. President Donald Trump said he believes China’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic is proof that Beijing “will do anything they can” to make him lose his re-election bid in November.
In an interview on Wednesday, Trump talked tough on China and said he was looking at different options in terms of consequences for Beijing over the virus.
Trump has been heaping blame on China for a global pandemic that has killed at least 62,000 people in the United States, and thrown the U.S. economy into a deep recession, putting in jeopardy his hopes for another four-year term.
The Republican president, often accused of not acting early enough to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus, said he believed China should have informed the world about the virus earlier.
Asked whether he was considering the use of tariffs or even debt writeoffs for China, Trump wouldn’t offer specifics. “There are many things I can do,” he said. “We’re looking for what happened.”
Trump said he believes Beijing wants his Democratic opponent, Joe Biden, to win the election to ease the pressure Trump has placed on China over trade and other issues. In Beijing, China’s foreign ministry said it has no interest in interfering in the U.S. presidential election.
Trump said the Phase 1 trade deal he concluded with Chinese President Xi Jinping aimed at reducing chronic U.S. trade deficits with China had been “upset very badly” by the economic fallout from the virus, which first surfaced in China late last year.
Trump also said South Korea has agreed to pay the U.S. more money for a defence co-operation agreement, but he would not be drawn out on how much. “We can make a deal. They want to make a deal,” Trump said.
The U.S. stations roughly 28,500 troops in South Korea, a legacy of the 19501953 Korean War that ended in an armistice.
Trump is leading an effort to try to keep the U.S. economy afloat through stimulus payments while nudging state governors to reopen their states.
Trump’s handling of the virus has come under scrutiny. Forty-three per cent of Americans approved of Trump’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak, according to the Reuters/ipsos poll from April 27-28.
President Donald Trump