The president continues, as time goes on, to make important policy pronouncements via Twitter, and it’s not as though he could be expected to be set to stop any time soon. It’s a testament to how un-seriously he takes the presidency that he’s so reliant on social media.
On Tuesday, he took to the social media platform yet again, this time with an update about the relationship of the United States with China. He has, over recent weeks and months, pursued an aggressive trade policy towards China to the point of sparking concerns about a trade war, which is the context his tweet came in.
‘Trade negotiations are continuing with China. They have been making hundreds of billions of dollars a year from the U.S., for many years. Stay tuned!’
As he indicated here, a longstanding issue of his with China has been our trade deficit with them. He has struggled to get his facts straight when it’s come to our trade deficit with China, claiming at one point that our deficit with them reached $500 billion in 2017, which would mean that the value of Chinese imports exceeded the value of U.S. exports to China by that amount. In fact, our 2017 trade deficit with China was actually about $336 billion.
Despite his struggling with the facts, he has pressed on with his trade aggression towards China, announcing tariffs against Chinese goods recently that sparked Chinese retaliation. Negotiations between the two countries over the future of their trade relationship are, as the president mentioned, ongoing, but he recently said that as a part of those negotiations, the U.S. would consider lifting sanctions on a Chinese telecommunications giant, ZTE.
That sanctions relief may be in return for the Chinese relaxing their restrictions on certain American imports.
For now, we will have to wait and see how the negotiations turn out — or, in the words of the perpetually television gimmick-oriented president, we will have to “stay tuned.”
The president offered his Tuesday update about China after giving one about Melania Trump, who is in the hospital this week after undergoing treatment for a benign kidney condition.
After the above messages, Trump added one touting his recently moderately rising poll numbers, fitting in a jab at both the media and the ongoing Russia investigation in the process.
To be clear, the media does not “make up” stories.
Check out Twitter’s response below.
Featured Image via The Asahi Shimbun via Getty Images