The Chinese spy balloon that crossed the continental United States may be no more, but Joe Biden’s headaches from the flubbed national security ordeal remain.
According to Axios, the president’s team is preparing to “rewrite” the China-centric portions of his State of the Union address, set to take place on Tuesday. That leads to the question of exactly what Biden was planning on originally saying.
Biden and his speechwriters are prepared to be nimble — and likely rewrite — the China sections of the speech, as officials weigh Beijing’s response to the U.S. military’s downing of the surveillance balloon after it drifted across North America.
The president’s challenge is a signal to Beijing that violating America’s airspace won’t be tolerated, while also convincing Americans — and skeptical Republicans — that he did enough to protect U.S. airspace. Biden said that on Wednesday he ordered the balloon to be shot down, and that national security officials thought it was safest to wait until it was over water.
Biden also wants to preserve his administration’s ability to cooperate with China on everything from the global economy to climate change.
Was Biden actually planning to brag about his relationship with China until the spy balloon incident? That seems to be the implication here, right? If he was going to take a hardline from the beginning, there’d be no reason to rewrite anything.
You have to love the mention of Republicans there as well. That’s the real issue, I guess. Those darn “skeptical Republicans.” It couldn’t be that Biden’s handling of the situation was weak and signaled to Beijing that incursions into US airspace will be tolerated. And if Biden really did order the balloon shot down on Wednesday and didn’t force his subordinates to carry out the order immediately, that’s not a show of strength either. Who is actually in charge over at the White House?
The last bit of that excerpt is the telling part, though. In the end, Biden and his cohorts (such as climate envoy John Kerry) care about one thing, and that’s spending your money and limiting your freedom to fight “climate change.” The reason the Chicoms have been given so much leeway on that national security front is that the president doesn’t want to mess up whatever ridiculous deal he’s working out with Xi Jinping’s government. Of course, China will never honor such a deal, but the victory lap, i.e. claiming he saved the planet, is the point. Not the end result.
The Biden administration remains far too cozy with China, and a little bit of tough talk while continuing to negotiate behind closed doors doesn’t change that. We should all also be deeply concerned about how much influence Gen. Mark Milley, a man with a gross history of China fluffing, apparently has over the president. Something just doesn’t feel right with how this all went down.