Former President Donald Trump targeted China, particularly for its role in the coronavirus pandemic, in a speech that he gave over the weekend.
The speech, which lasted over an hour, took place at the North Carolina GOP convention that was held on Saturday evening.
“China must pay”
In his speech, Trump argued that China is responsible for the coronavirus pandemic and that, therefore, it ought to provide financial restitution to countries around the globe.
“We should all declare with one unified voice that China must pay. They must pay,” Trump said. “All nations should work together to present China a bill for a minimum of $10 trillion to compensate for the damage.”
Trump went on to argue that countries ought to cancel any debt that they owe to China as a form of “down payment,” saying, “the nations of the world should no longer owe money to China.”
Trump also argued that the United States ought to put a “100 percent tariff on all goods made in China.”
He was right
Trump went on to note that even his critics are now starting to acknowledge that he may have been right that the coronavirus pandemic was the result of a leak at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV).
“The media, the Democrats, and the so-called experts are now finally admitting what I first said 13 months ago: The evidence demonstrates that the virus originated in a Chinese government lab,” Trump said.
Some of those critics, in fact, have gone so far as to suggest that it’s Trump’s fault that they didn’t initially consider the lab leak theory more seriously. Trump, in particular, singled out Dr. Anthony Fauci, the head of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), for leading people away from the lab-leak theory.
“Not a great doctor, but a hell of a promoter,” Trump said. “He likes television more than any other politician in this room.”
Trump’s speech certainly provided a stark contrast to the Biden administration, which many have accused of being far too soft on China. Many would argue that the tough tone that Trump adopted toward China is exactly what has been missing.
On Friday, the day before the speech, Trump created a buzz by suggesting that, in terms of his presidency, there will be a “next time.” Trump, though, has yet to officially announce whether or not he will run for the U.S. presidency again in 2024.