President Biden’s recent meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping has stirred up some strong opinions, particularly from Republican Senator Tom Cotton, who is not too happy with the way the president handled himself during the encounter. Senator Cotton expressed his concerns on Fox News Sunday, suggesting that President Biden’s demeanor toward the communist leader was too casual and cordial. The senator pointed out that it was concerning for the president to express that it was an “honor and pleasure” to welcome a communist dictator like Xi Jinping to America. He further drew a comparison to former President Ronald Reagan’s approach during his meetings with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, emphasizing that Biden’s approach was not in line with Reagan’s style.
— The Washington Times (@WashTimes) November 21, 2023
The meeting between the two leaders took place at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit, where they delved into discussions about trade, Taiwan, U.S.-Chinese relations, combating the flow of fentanyl into the United States, and reestablishing military communication. Senator Cotton took the opportunity to voice his views on banning the Chinese app TikTok, stating that recent events have underscored the urgency of taking action against the app. He argued that TikTok poses not only a threat to data privacy and security but has also become a tool for Chinese communist propaganda. In his characteristic style, the senator drew a parallel to the Cold War era, suggesting that if the U.S. wouldn’t have allowed communist Russia to engage in similar activities, it should not tolerate communist China doing so now.
President Biden, on the other hand, seemed to take a different tone after the meeting, indicating that he and President Xi would be maintaining direct contact in the coming months. He mentioned discussing human rights with Xi and expressed a positive outlook on the steps taken to bolster diplomacy. He also highlighted the need to preserve and pursue high-level diplomacy with the People’s Republic of China, emphasizing the importance of open lines of communication between the two nations.
Senator Cotton’s criticisms reflect the conservative perspective on the Biden administration’s approach to dealing with China. The differing viewpoints underscore the ongoing debate regarding how the U.S. should engage with its global adversaries, particularly in the context of diplomatic exchanges and national security concerns. As the political landscape continues to evolve, it remains to be seen how these differing stances will shape the future of U.S.-China relations.