Vice President Mike Pence delivered a scathing rebuke of China during a speech Thursday, slamming Beijing for its predatory trade practices and what he and President Donald Trump have called midterm election meddling.
Pence went so far as to say “China wants a different American president” because it is tired of getting hammered by Trump’s tariffs in an effort to level the trading field. The U.S.’s trade deficit ballooned to $53.2 billion dollars for the month of August after record imports.
“Beijing is employing a whole-of-government approach, using political, economic and military tools, as well as propaganda, to advance its influence and benefit its interests in the United States,” Pence said Thursday in a speech the New York Times describes as portent of the “New Cold War.” “China is also applying this power in more proactive ways than ever before, to exert influence and interfere in the domestic policy and politics of our country.”
China responded, calling Pence’s accusations “unwarranted” and “hearsay,” “confusing right and wrong and creating something out of thin air.”
Beijing went on to say it is firmly opposed to the stance Pence and Trump have taken against it.
Per a release from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China:
The Chinese people are highly confident about Socialism with Chinese Characteristics. The history and facts have proven that this is a successful path which suits China’s national conditions and can lead to national prosperity and people’s happiness. No one knows this better than the Chinese people. China is unswervingly pressing ahead with comprehensively deepening reform and opening wider to the outside world. China’s development is mainly owed to Chinese people’s hard work and its mutually beneficial cooperation with countries around the world instead of others’ alms and giving. No one can stop the Chinese people from steadfastly marching ahead along the path of Socialism with Chinese Characteristics and making greater achievements. The efforts made by anyone to distort the facts are doomed to be in vain.
China unswervingly pursues the path of peaceful development and commits itself to developing friendly and cooperative relations with all other countries on the basis of the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence and forging a community with a shared future for mankind. China is always the builder of world peace, contributor to world development and defender of the international order. China’s economic and diplomatic activities around the globe are widely welcomed by other countries and we have friends all over the world. China will by no means seek its own development at the expense of other countries’ interests. Meanwhile, we firmly safeguard our sovereignty, security and development interests. It is very ridiculous for the US side to stigmatize its normal exchanges and cooperation with China as China interfering in its internal affairs and elections. China always follows the principle of non-interference in others’ internal affairs and we have no interest in meddling in US internal affairs and elections. The international community has already known fully well who wantonly infringes upon others’ sovereignty, interferes in others’ internal affairs and undermines others’ interests. Any malicious slander on China is futile.
China’s policy towards the United States is consistent and clear-cut. We are committed to joining hands with the US to work for non-conflict, non-confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation. We urge the US to correct its wrongdoing, stop groundlessly accusing and slandering China and harming China’s interests and China-US ties, and take concrete actions to maintain the sound and steady development of China-US relations.