President Donald Trump’s deal with Beijing over the Chinese telecommunications company ZTE, combined with the Chinese government’s agreement to put a half-billion dollars into a project in Indonesia seem “awfully suspicious,” Rep. Tim Ryan believes.
The Ohio Democrat also told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that Trump’s recent tweet about too many jobs being lost in China is a cause for concern.
“China is our number one competitor and we have absolutely no strategy on how we’re going to deal with it,” said Ryan. “China has a ten-year plan, a 30-year plan, a 50-year plan, a 100-year plan and the Trump administration is caught in a 24-hour news cycle with no strategy for how the United States can compete against them.”
Meanwhile, the deals for ZTE and Indonesia show Trump is “trying to represent the interests of the United States, but there’s always some kind of business dealings going on,” said Ryan.
“It shows the scope of what China is trying to do, their one belt, one road initiative, where they’re trying to move into Europe. It is trying to extend their influence in the region and President Trump is profiting off of this.”
Ryan pointed out that in his hometown of Youngstown, Ohio, 2,700 auto worker jobs have been lost since Trump took office.
“We can’t get any attention,” he said. “There’s no industrial policy in the United States, no talk of helping the middle class and here’s the other piece when you’re talking about China.”
Further, the United States is borrowing a great deal of money from China, said Ryan, but China is “making vast investments all around the world to become the great economic power in the world in the next five to 10 years because of the bad decisions we’re making here in the United States,”
Meanwhile, many people voted for Trump, including Democrats, did so on the promise that he’d bring back their jobs and keep assembly plants open and thriving, said Ryan, but “think the shine is coming off the apple. I think there’s a couple issues he talks about rhetorically that they connect with.”
There has been no “structural change,” Ryan said. “There’s been no attention given to those states, those Great Lake states that he campaigned in and made all the promises. He’s gone back on just about everything he said.
“And I will tell you that I’ve talked to several union leaders who have told me that a lot of their rank and file people are upset that they voted the way they did.”
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