DeSantis Says United States Should End Dependency On China, Tariffs Can Force Change

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On Wednesday, Florida Governor and 2024 Republican presidential candidate Ron DeSantis said during an interview that the United States needs to become economically independent from China and that he would be willing to use tariffs to force the change.

DeSantis made his comments during an interview on Fox News with host Kayleigh McEnany.

“I think we need to reestablish our economic sovereignty,” DeSantis said. “I think we need to produce more critical items here in the United States. And I think they have a huge amount of leverage over us because of really policy choices that have been made over many decades.”

DeSantis went on to slam “D.C. elites” who pushed for China’s entrance to the World Trade Organization and claimed that it would make China more “free” and “democratic.”

“In reality, it hollowed out parts of our country, it made China very rich, and what has Xi used that money for? To build up more military capacity,” DeSantis said. “He now has grand ambitions, not just in the Pacific, but even in our own hemisphere. And we see news where China is going to be working with Cuba to establish eavesdropping, maybe a military outpost, that’s a huge, huge threat to this country.”

“So yes, we need to declare independence from China economically,” he added. “And we need to make sure that we have the ability to project the appropriate strength in the Pacific to work with our allies to deter China. China understands the language of strength. And I think what Joe Biden has done since his first day in office, he’s projected weakness. A lot of bad actors around the world see that. And that really whets their appetite to be able to do things that are going to be very harmful for the world.”

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