Biden Mixes Up Xi and Putin, Stumbles Defending China Tariffs

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Embattled Joe Biden, sat down with TIME for a lengthy interview. It was everything that you expected.

His interview was a total disaster. Deliciously so. Quintessential Joe.

There were also the usual lies that Biden repeated ad nauseam. For example, CNN fact-checked his claim that inflation was 9 percent at the time he assumed office. The inflation rate was 1.4 percent when Biden took office.

TIME reported that at one point the president, in his pathetic attempt to defend new tariffs on some imports from China confused Russian dictator Vladimir Putin and Chinese dictator Xi Jinping.

Biden is accustomed to mixing up names and causing confusion. In this interview, his incorrect responses about his tariff package that he announced on 18 May were more important. The $18 billion package includes Chinese EVs and solar panels as well as imported aluminum and steel. Here’s Joe:

You need a Chinese partner to be able to do business with China. You have to give access to your intellectual property etc. They can steal directly through cyber espionage or other methods. It’s well documented and recognized internationally. These tactics are not competitive. This is not competition. It’s cheating.

Biden’s statement is not something I disagree with. What I find objectionable is his statement to TIME that tariffs would not affect American consumers’ costs. He was either lying, confused, or had no clue what he meant. Again, Joe:

Here’s what you need to know. There is a difference. I told Putin [Xi] right from the start that we would not be engaging in. Trump, for example, wants to impose a 10% tariff on all goods. This will increase the cost of all goods in America.

We’ll get there in a moment.

Biden continued to dig deeper by asserting that the tariffs would allow the United States “to play by the same rules” (incorrect) as China. Before digging any further, Biden brought up the 51 percent ownership requirement in China (which is irrelevant to the tariff argument).

We are just saying that if you wish to do so, then we will do it. You cannot flood the market with Chinese government subsidies in order to undermine their ability to deal effectively with electric vehicles. We won’t tolerate it.

Sometimes, the guy can make teeth hurt.

The Problem

Biden attacked Trump’s “desire for a 10 percent duty on everything”, claiming that it would “raise prices on everything in America.” Let’s pretend it’s true for the sake of argument. If so, what are the reasons? Costs incurred by importers, manufacturers or any other company that purchases products to sell are ultimately passed on to the consumer. This is pretty basic.

The same argument that Biden used to attack Trump would also apply to Biden, even if his tariffs were 5 percent instead of 10 percent.

Joe’s tariffs don’t even come close to 10 percent or 5 percent. Here’s more:

Biden’s China Tariffs cover a wide range of products and industries. These include a tariff of 100% on electric vehicles, 25% on EV Batteries, 50% on solar cells and semiconductors, 25% on steel and aluminum, ship-to shore cranes, and 25% on medical equipment.

Please don’t get me wrong; I am not in agreement with the numbers above.

Biden’s dishonesty, whether it is due to confusion or outright lies, that Trump tariffs will somehow drive prices up but not his own, is what I strongly disagree with. This is absurd. Biden’s argument of 51 percent Chinese ownership is not comparable. It’s the price of doing business in communist countries.

Tariffs 101

Both Donald Trump and Joe Biden are likely to be wrong on the issue of who pays the tariffs.

The U.S. imposes import tariffs and U.S. companies pay the tax directly to the U.S. Government on the goods they purchase from abroad. Tariffs can affect other parties besides U.S. companies directly paying them. For example, foreign businesses that sell goods to U.S. firms (if they lower their prices in order to absorb tariffs) or U.S. customers who buy the goods.

It’s true that Trump keeps things in his head. In Biden’s situation, however, his lying is legendary. Add to that his confusion about life in general, and I will continue to support him every day and twice on Sunday.