Nancy Pelosi Stirs the Pot on China
Author: Greg Valliere
July 27, 2022
PELOSI IS AN OUTSPOKEN FOE OF THE BEIJING GOVERNMENT, largely because of its human rights policies. Some analysts believe Pelosi, 82, wants to show opposition to China ahead of her possible departure from Congress this winter, which is considered likely if the Republicans take control of the House.
PELOSI SHOULD EASILY WIN re-election in her liberal San Francisco district, but she is unlikely to stay as House Minority Leader — especially since the new GOP House Speaker, probably Rep. Kevin McCarthy, would launch hearings on the extensive stock trading by Pelosi’s husband.
A PELOSI VISIT TO TAIWAN on a U.S. military plane has generated intense objections from Beijing, which has threatened military action, possibly Chinese jets flying close to her plane. Some Republicans have urged Pelosi not to postpone her trip — but even President Biden, who plans to talk with President Xi Jinping this week, has declared that a visit “is not a good idea right now.”
CHINESE RHETORIC HAS HEATED UP as Xi seeks a rare third term this fall. A Pelosi visit would be cited by Xi as a reason to re-elect him. Chinese officials believe U.S. visits are an attempt to impose sovereignty over the Taiwan Strait, where both countries have intensified their military presence.
THIS COMES AS U.S. INTELLIGENCE OFFICIALS express concern over jurisdiction over the Taiwan Strait. The New York Times reported yesterday that a Chinese invasion of Taiwan, while not imminent, is a possibility in the next year or two — especially if Western aid to Ukraine continues to be a distraction.
BIDEN AND OTHER U.S. OFFICIALS are trying to dissuade Pelosi from visiting, and we think it’s possible that she may postpone the trip. Nevertheless, relations between Washington and Beijing are likely to stay icy; any significant liberalization of trade relations seems unlikely before the U.S. elections.
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