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Monday, November 30, 2020

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

The next four years will be critical in determining whether Communist China or America is the leading global power in the 21st century. 

The next president will leave office in 2025. That same year, the Chinese Communist Party is hoping to achieve its “Made in China 2025” plan. That agenda calls for China to dominate the global economy in 10 key technology sectors, including robotics, medicine, and IT. 


This is a key step for China’s agenda of global domination. Whether or not China succeeds will be greatly influenced by the policies of the next president. 

Love him or hate him, President Trump’s policies on China have been rock-solid. Mr. Trump aggressively pushed back against China in ways previous administrations, both Republican and Democratic, failed to do.

The Trump administration used tariffs to fight back against Chinese intellectual property theft and currency manipulation. The Justice Department has criminally charged professors accused of secretly working for the Chinese. The administration flagged companies as foreign agents for China, giving a more detailed look at China’s influence operations. And Mr. Trump has fought to bring jobs and supply chains, particularly for medicine, back from China. 

Broadly driving the policy shift is a vision to “decouple” from China on strategic goods and technology, becoming more reliant on ourselves or friendlier countries. It is against U.S. national interests to allow the evil Chinese Communist Party to have leverage over us or take advantage of access to American institutions.

Yet, that is exactly the position we have found ourselves in. China controls the supply of rare earth minerals (essential for electronics and military equipment to function) and medical equipment — 97% of our antibiotics and about 30% of our personal protective equipment comes from China.

China is now hoping for a president who will go back to the “see no evil” policy that America had embraced until Mr. Trump’s presidency. 

China was allowed to get away with ripping off intellectual property with no real consequences. China set up “Confucius Institutes” on major university campuses to influence college students. China was allowed to buy 2,000 U.S. companies in critical fields, such as media, aerospace and others, with little pushback.

Consider the stakes. For all Mr. Trump has done, there are still major threats from China that require federal action. Over 130 Chinese companies have had access to U.S. financial markets, and bizarrely they’ve been exempted from accounting standards U.S. companies must follow. U.S. investment banks are seeking to invest in poorly regulated Chinese companies, putting Americans’ retirement funds at risk. 

The Washington establishment, of which Joe Biden is a long-standing member of nearly 50 years, was asleep on their watch. 

Mr. Biden has said he wants to be tough on China. But his record is poor. And there’s an unresolved question: What is his and his family’s relationship with the Chinese Communists? 

On Nov. 18, Senate Republicans released a new report on the Biden family’s foreign business dealings. The report outlines how Hunter Biden and associates had dealings with Ye Jianming, who has solid ties to the Chinese Communist Party and Chinese military. Hunter Biden was allegedly so close to this CCP-linked businessman that he was the first guest in Mr. Ye’s new apartment. 

One can easily envision a scenario in which the Chinese have dirt on the Biden family. Hunter has lived a reckless life of drug abuse, getting kicked out of the Navy and knocking up a stripper. Who knows what else Chinese agents know, which they could use as blackmail. 

Worse, Joe Biden has already lied about his knowledge of his son Hunter’s shady business dealings in Ukraine. Mr. Biden told “60 Minutes” that he had “never discussed” his son’s business. Yet, a Biden family business partner has gone public and said that Joe Biden was well aware of and in on the scheming to form a venture with a Chinese oil company. 

Joe Biden has no intention of being transparent about anything his family had to do with the Chinese. It is time for the attorney general to appoint a special counsel to investigate Biden’s ties to China. Everyone benefits if all cards are face up on the table. You can’t be blackmailed if the unflattering information is already out in the open.

• Richard Berman is president of Berman and Co. in Washington, D.C.


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