The US cannot “get tough” on China because its modern lifestyle depends on China, Indian-American Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy said, stressing that Washington must declare its economic independence from Beijing.
The 38-year-old multimillionaire and biotech entrepreneur made the comments on Wednesday during the Republican Party’s third presidential debate in Miami, Florida.
The debate was attended by Indian-American presidential candidate Nikki Haley, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and South Carolina Senator Tim Scott. Former US President Donald Trump, who is leading the race, again did not take part in the debate.
“For this reason, we cannot be tough on China. The reason is that we rely on them for our modern way of life. And we must declare our economic independence from our enemy,” Ramaswamy said.
“This is the Declaration of Independence that Thomas Jefferson would have signed at the age of 33. And today, if he were alive, that would be the Declaration of Independence that I will sign as the next President,” Mr. Ramaswamy said in response to a query.
Stressing that the actual U.S. defense industrial base depends on China in terms of supply chain, he said: “For the F-35 jets, for the ships that we build. Think about it. Why are we storing this if this isn’t the case.” “We don’t actually want to be strong against our enemy China? We depend on them. Just like we depend on them for pharmaceuticals. Just like we depend on them for semiconductors.”
“We need politicians who are independent of the forces that increase our dependence on China. My message to Xi Jinping is: You are done buying land in this country. They will not donate to universities in this country. U.S. companies will not expand into the Chinese market until they play by the same rules,” Mr. Ramaswamy said.
He added that the US needs to increase its naval capacity by at least 20 percent in the next few years.
“I think we need to at least be able to meet the standards of our AUKUS agreement. At the moment there is a risk that we will not even be able to comply with our AUKUS standards with Australia and the UK. So what we need to do is.” “We have a plan that reverses the trajectory of the divest-to-invest program by 20 percent over the next three years,” he said.
The AUKUS Pact is a trilateral alliance between the United Kingdom, the United States and Australia that is seen as a counterpoint to an aggressive China in the strategic Indo-Pacific region.
During the debate, Mr. Ramaswamy claimed that Indian-American Republican presidential candidate Haley called China a great friend of America while serving as the US ambassador to the United Nations: “When she was UN ambassador, she literally called her her words, not mine.” “Our great friend.” You can’t be fair-weather fans of the right politics. Get to the bottom of the cause. Even US companies in Silicon Valley do this regularly,” he said.
Haley denied the allegations.
“When he talks about me praising China, he doesn’t know that the reason China was praised is because I negotiated with China and Russia the largest sanctions against North Korea in a generation,” she said.
“This is literally why North Korea stopped testing ballistic missiles. So I said that China has done good on its part. This was a negotiation that could never have been had – I had fought against China my entire career at the United Nations,” she added.
“They brought her to South Carolina. …Look at the actual facts. They brought them to this country,” Mr. Ramaswamy alleged.
“…By ensuring that no one can get any head of a UN agency. I made sure we made them aware of human rights. I made sure we held them accountable for everything they did. This is “The Reason We Withdrew from the Human Rights Council. That’s why we called her out,” Ms. Haley said in her defense.
The two Indian-Americans clashed several times on the debate stage. It began with Ramaswamy calling Haley, former US Vice President Dick Cheney, in three-inch heels. The former South Carolina governor was the only woman on the debate stage.
“There are people like Nikki Haley, who resigned from her time at the United Nations, is bankrupt or in debt – was her family. Then she becomes a military contractor. She joins the board of Boeing and others. And it is now.” “A multimillionaire. So I think that’s wrong when the Republicans do it or the Democrats do it. That is the choice we face,” he claimed.
“Do you want a leader from a different generation who will put this country first, or do you want Dick Cheney in three-inch heels?” said Mr. Ramaswamy.
Haley beat up Mr Ramaswamy when her turn came shortly afterwards.
“Yes. First of all I want to say that these are 12cm heels and I don’t wear them unless you can walk in them. The second thing I want to say is: I wear heels. They’re not that” for a fashion statement. They serve as ammunition,” Ms. Haley said to cheers from the audience.
She also criticized Mr Ramaswamy and asked him not to include her daughters in the debate.
Mr Ramaswamy mentioned her daughter during the part of the debate about banning TikTok.
“I want to laugh about why Nikki Haley didn’t answer your question about looking families in the eye. In the last debate, she made fun of me for actually joining TikTok while her own daughter was actually using the app “Maybe you should take care of your family first before you preach to someone else,” he said.
“Take my daughter out of your voice,” an angry Ms. Haley responded.
“Grown up daughter,” Ramaswamy said as he was booed. “And that’s actually the point. Her supporters support her. That’s fine. Here’s the truth,” he said.
Mr. Ramaswamy spoke about the numerous bills signed by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in August that ban Chinese citizens from purchasing land in the state. He said, “Bring the CCP to South Carolina. What he left out, Ron, and to be honest.” There was a lobbying-based exemption in that bill that allowed Chinese nationals to purchase land within 20 miles of a military base that one of yours is interested in donor had used. So I think we have to call a spade a spade.” Ramaswamy also claimed that his government would ban any US company from sending data to the Chinese.
“Here’s a story most people don’t know: Airbnb hands over US user data to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Well, this is a US company. So that’s the problem when you have Republicans who are temporarily going “As the wind blows, and now it’s popular to get tough on China,” he said.
Speaking on Tiktok, he said: “Stop virtue signaling. The fact is that Democrats are on TikTok today. Israeli views or otherwise, that’s me.”
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