POLITICS + GOVERNMENT

Romney: United States needs to have comprehensive strategy toward China

Feb 17, 2023, 9:00 PM

Sen. Mitt Romney...

Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, will not run for reelection. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)

SALT LAKE CITY — The United States needs to have a more comprehensive strategy toward China, according to Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah).

The Utah senator joined Inside Sources with Boyd Matheson on Friday to discuss the situation with China.

Romney says back in the early days of the Soviet Union, the government came together to create a strategy for dealing with Russia.

“The idea was that we would isolate Russia,” Romney said. “And we would separate ourselves economically, militarily. Well, in this case, we need to develop a strategy relative to China.”

Developing a strategy toward China

Romney and Sen. Bob Menendez (D-New Jersey) previously introduced a bill requiring the State Department to do just that. The bill was passed last year.

During a dinner with the Secretary of State, Menendez and Romney asked where things stood. Romney says they got the run around.

He says the response they got was the strategy was focused on investment and compete. Romney said those are objectives, not a strategy. 

“Probably the biggest single challenge our country faces over this century is the emergence of China,” Romney said. “As a nation as strong as if not stronger than us militarily and economically.”

Romney says the United States has watched as China has invested in the Caribbean, Africa and Latin America. 

“We see them steal our technology,” Romney said. “Just one thing after the other. And we respond to each of those items, but haven’t said ‘OK, where are we going to push back against them?'”

Romney says that President Trump began putting duties on China products because he said China was stealing U.S. technology. And it has continued with President Biden, according to the Utah senator.

“That was something that really hadn’t been done before,” he said.

China number one concern for Secretary of State

Romney says Secretary of State Antony Blinken has mentioned his top concern is China.

“That’s good news and a recognition that we need to take from just an overview of what kinds of objectives we have to actually develop strategy,” Romney said. “And that’s something he’s got to take seriously, and I believe you will see that.”

Mattheson asked, “What are some of those strategic components that we should be hoping for?”

“We have to decide what are the types of military weapons that will communicate to China,” Romney said. “That you don’t want to test us, that you don’t want to push against us. That you don’t want to go to war against the United States of America.”

He says the country needs to rethink whether the weapons made to fight wars in the Middle East are the correct weapons for Asia.

However, he says members of Congress don’t want to give up on the old weapons because they are made in their home districts.

Romney goes on to say the economy and communication are other parts of a strategy toward China.

Inside Sources with Boyd Matheson can be heard on weekdays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

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Romney: United States needs to have comprehensive strategy toward China