China’s Dilemma Part 2: Biden vs. Trump – Who’s the Lesser ‘Bowl of Poison’?
◇ “China, the possibility of blaming China for COVID-19 responsibility and intensifying trade war if Trump wins.” Among critics, “With the ‘weakening of U.S. democracy and global leadership,’ Trump benefits China.”
Former President Trump may be more hesitant to defend Taiwan due to his isolationist approach to foreign policy. Still, considering his unpredictability and strong rhetoric against China, China cannot rule out the possibility that he could blame China for the COVID-19 pandemic that occurred at the end of his presidential term and could intensify the trade war.
Many critics on Chinese social media appear to support Trump, not only because they see him as a businessman who wants to trade but also because they regard him as a destructive figure who weakens U.S. democracy and global leadership. They believe his re-election would benefit China, AP explained.
Trump has a nickname in China, “Chuanpu Jianguo,” which means that his policies and remarks during his term ultimately benefited the Chinese government, including economic reforms.
AP analyzed that Trump’s recent criticism that “Taiwan has stolen the semiconductor manufacturing industry from the U.S.” is being taken as a signal that he, as a businessman, may not be willing to defend Taiwan, which China considers its territory.
◇ U.S. think tank’s director of China, “Trump, causing serious damage greater than China’s benefits, such as damaging alliance cooperation and U.S. leadership.”
Yun Sun, director of China at the U.S. think tank Stimson Center, warned that “If Trump takes office, U.S.-China relations could deteriorate endlessly (with no bottom), causing great risks and uncertainties, including the possibility of military conflict,” noting that nationalist sentiment within China could conflict with government management or elites.
Director Sun pointed out, “While Trump may have some advantages related to his potential to damage alliances and partnerships and shake the world’s trust in U.S. leadership, these benefits for China cannot offset the much more serious damage he could cause to relations with China.”
In fact, during the 2020 election between then-President Trump and Democratic candidate Biden, U.S. intelligence agencies reported that the Chinese government considered Trump unpredictable and opposed his re-election, AP reported.