DONALD Trump has said he believes China "will do anything they can" to make him lose his re-election bid this November.
The President has renewed his attacks on Beijing, which he blames for the global pandemic which has killed nearly 62,000 people in the United States and crashed the economy.
Trump said he believes Beijing wants his Democratic opponent in the Presidential election, Joe Biden, to win the race to ease the pressure he has placed on China over Covid-19 and trade.
"China will do anything they can to have me lose this race," Trump told Reuters.
"They're constantly using public relations to try to make it like they're innocent parties.”
He said the trade deal that he concluded with Chinese President Xi Jinping aimed at reducing chronic U.S. trade deficits with China had been "upset very badly" by the economic fallout from the virus.
A senior Trump administration official said that an informal truce in the war of words Trump and Xi, agreed in a March phone call in, was over.
The two leaders had promised that their governments would do everything possible to cooperate to contain the coronavirus.
But recent days, Washington and Beijing have traded increasingly bitter recriminations over the origin of the virus and the response to it.
Asked whether he was considering the use of tariffs or even writing-off US debt to China, Trump would not offer specifics.
"There are many things I can do. We're looking for what happened," said the President.
Trump and his top aides, while stepping up their anti-China rhetoric, have stopped short of directly criticizing Xi, who the U.S. president has repeatedly called his friend.
On Wednesday, it was reported the White House ordered intelligence agencies to try to find out if China and the WHO initially hid information about the outbreak.
In response Le Yucheng, the country’s executive vice foreign minister, told NBC News said that Trump didn’t act quickly enough after Wuhan, the epicenter of the global outbreak, locked down.
Trump is leading efforts to keep the U.S. economy afloat through stimulus payments to individuals and companies while nudging state governors to carefully reopen their states.
Trump sounded wistful about the strong economy that he had enjoyed compared with now, when millions of people have lost their jobs and GDP is faltering.
"We were rocking before this happened. We had the greatest economy in history," he said.
He said he is happy with the way many governors are operating under the strain of the virus but said some need to improve though he wouldn’t name names.
Trump’s handling of the virus has come under strong scrutiny with just 43 per cent of Americans approving of his handling of the pandemic.
The Reuters/Ipsos poll came days after the president’s discredited comments on injecting disinfectant.
But the President brushed it off saying: “I don’t believe the polls.
“I believe the people of this country are smart. And I don’t think that they will put a man in who’s incompetent.”
Source: Read Full Article