tv China Discussion at CPAC CSPAN March 10, 2021 7:35pm-8:01pm EST
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representative robert like kaiser discussed china the recent conservative political action conference. this is 25 minutes. >>. [applause] >> i think everyone of us did it exactly the wrong waybut thank you all for being here . are you having a fun morning so far as to i recognized all kinds of interesting people in the crowd. i don't know if they want me to call or notbut bill, would you stand up and wait everyone ? good. we got other folks here. i can't believe howgreat it feels just be open for, what do you think ? the people in your state think it's a good idea to keep schools open?
>> absolutely. america is tired of being locked down. states like tennessee have been on the cutting edge of reopening seeing their economies come back but seeing their kids back in school, we need to have our nation open again. i applaud states like tennessee and florida wherewe are today that are making strides to get our economy back open . it's veryimportant . >> let's jump into our topic. you know one of the things we spent a lot of time talking about cpac is the menace of china from an economic perspective and national security perspective. we have the concept called claude, some of you like me might not be that familiar with. give us a one minute overview of how we handle a very tough neighborhood knowing that you just return before you ran for the senate from being ambassador of the country to japan, you know that
neighborhood well. give us a note overview. >> out before i do that i want to take a moment to complement you and cpac for your vision because you've taken cpac to that region. you're taking conservative leadership and there's a real need, a real desire , cpac japan is going to be a big success. india is an opportunity and we bring our message of conservative freedom to the same ideas that have made america great area area where going to seemore conservatives and more strength . they realize what a threat china is area china stands for something authoritarian, the thing that so counter to our freedom and they realize it and appreciate more than anybody that we need to work as close as we can with our allies in that region . japan, america, australia and india to push back on china . china is a hegemon area they're attacking us militarily and diplomatically and of course they're attacking us diplomatically
and we have the best trade negotiator in the world with us did so much with china and japan, about like kaiser so we have significant challenges today and i couldn't be more honored to be here to talk to you with ambassador like kaiser about what we're facing. >> this whole idea of uniting these countries with american foreign-policy and economic policy, with india, japan, theseother countries in the region . it's kind of a break from this idea that we always turn to europe. the ambassador is like we always got to be, it's a different way of thinking. give us the inputs of your thinking about changing our entire focus to not just china so much of it was reorienting our thinking on china from an economic and trade perspective. >> thank you for small and i want to congratulate you,
i've been a cpac fan forever and i believe thework you do is important . it's like a lifework i know and you and mercy get all the credit in the world for it. so let me take a step back and say one of the great successes of the trump administration and one of the reasons that president trump ran for president in his trade. he thought we had a bad trade policy and that we been taken advantage of by the japanese. for years and years andover the last decade by the chinese . when he did it, and i sort of offensive synthesizes two things. one, he reoriented the purpose oftrade policy . instead of promoting multinationals for corporate profit it became for working people and farmers and ranchers. that's what he did and he fundamentally believes that. the notion that it's hard for
us to even remember what it was likefour years ago when people thought about trade. i thought the chamber of commerce, et al. multinational corporations they thought outsourcing was good . but getting cheap t-shirts was the objective of our economic policy area president trump changed all that, nobody believesthat anymore . president biden when he was a candidate didn't even run against, he didn't believe in that policy but he'd been running against it because it was so often perspective and the second thing he did was he alerted people to the problem of china. four years ago people thought china was a force for good. it was nonsense. president trump never believed that. i certainly don't. i wrote and talked about going back to the 90s when he has convinced everyone that this is a very serious threat with the united states being number one in the world and
all the basic values we care about. >> you been involved in this conversation about trade policy for a long time everyone this argument ? >> i think we want it but it's like every crucial argument, we've got to keep winning so everybody out here's to stay on top of it. there's nothing conservative about free trade. what conservatives believe is maintaining our values, the things we think are important and if you go all the way to work, that's what the essence of what we believe is . small government for sure but also maintaining asic values. and this fight, but trade policy should be out in every case is does it help working people. a better life, better communities, families that stay together, less opioids this is what trade policy is about. it's not about corporate bottom line, not about cheap t-shirts, it's not about christmas lights that often or more. that's what it was about
before trump. i think we've turned the corner. we won that argument but the people on the otherside are not going to stopfighting . you can see it right now in washington every day . i called corporate globalists approach. this is pushing back but i do think it's one of the great accomplishments , those two things. the orientation on china, china is a genuine threat area i wrote this in 1996 i said if china gets into the wto there won't be a working man's job in america that's not at risk. >> if you think about the accomplishments president trump and ambassador like kaiser forward it's the greatest blue-collar movement in america. we shot saw jobs accelerate at the base we never seen before, they opted collar jobs. it's been great for hispanics and black americans and all of america blue-collar comeback was the theme of our ministration. you did a great job leading. you think about our allies, a
suffered from problems with china too. they subsidize the industry. got 5g and while way to worry about it as well but they're basically the same problems but it's american leadership. it was president trump leadership it took to standup and do something about it and i can say this ambassador, thank you . our farmers in west tennessee back me every day because they know i work my heart out alongside you for two years to get that us-japan trade deal done and that's one of the best trade deals that's ever been done. agricultural markets for our ranchers, iq. >> one of the best things about the last election was the fact that we had you now in the united statessenate . so when you say we won the argument , we've got bill
haggerty in the senate. that's a big advantage. letme talk about this issue of allies. i think it's important. we talk about the quad those are the countries that are allowing china . and there's a military security kind of alliance there. we dealt with them economically . but this notion and the japaneseare dependable allies on the subject . the australians for sure and india also because they're right on the border but you'll see a lot of people say we have to take our cues from europe. because everyone, you know europe doesn't necessarily see it the way we see. they don't want to follow the united states area they view this at least a lot of them as one of the great comments was henry kissinger's comment when you say have you talked to europe and he says how i call it europe so europe is a lot of different things. we have to announce that a very large majority i think of elites and people, a tripartite, basically the united states, china they
don't see us with them against china. they justdon't view it that way and it's a fundamental flaw . i suggest to people as you watch what happens with this administration , look for what i call kind of red flags. getting rid of the tariffs on china. giving exclusions, taking care of corporations. making concessions to the wto. these are things that we have to keep our eye on. we will see their oldest goes. but it's important to work with our allies. we tried to do it and i would say there are certain allies. >> along the lines as bob mentioned this administration. with a gun. they reentered the who you are going back the paris lemon tree. they canceled the keystone xl pipeline. china is laughing all the way to the bank if this happens. whathappens when the keystone xl pipeline gets canceled and
we stop leasing land . we become energy independent. we become dependent on nations that don't have our best interests at heart and those paying jobs , they go away. you can't just turn around and get the job at a solar manufacturing facility or company thatmakes wind turbines because those are all made in china .>> i think you fail to understand john kerry is going to fly those americans to china on his private jet and find them jobs in china. >> as we allowed north spring to come back online, this is certainly putting us in a strategic disadvantage and look was trying to run into the around nuclear deal. it's the europeans trying to broker this, they want to do business with iran and if we let the sanctions that allow them another economicbonanza . this is bad for america and i think the division has been clear about it, we need to listen. >> let me ask you both a
quick question, i feel like i get rid of the jargon , we have this free trade, we have all these words and now it's like what they mean, what are we trying to get to and you're not saying we don't want trade, you're saying what i think is putting some of my language, i read your language it's where not going to get where we want to get with economic partners overseas through weakness. through saying we will send our jobs and try to encourage you todeal with us better . it's peace through strength, you get foreign countries where you want them to be by telling them you're going to aggressively stand up for your own people. is there anything set up that's right? >> the best thing we can do for our allies is have the strongest best military and economy in the world. everything we do just directs to that. that helps everybody. the one thing we have to remember, we are the ultimate
force for good in the world. and i fundamentally believe that. the united states is the fundamental force in the world but to go to your point, let's look at nafta versus the usmca. the objective was a corporate objective and after what you saw with was the movement of our auto industry. and president trump, he's right, we've got to get those jobs back. there's no reason those jobs should go down the. we basically set up a system where in order to makemoney that's what you did . then you fast-forward the us and ca and it was the opposite. the objective there was clearly if you want to get the benefit of this agreement you've got to bring the job so we put in place regional content requirements that were much higher and the opposite of the direction everyone went to. requirements of a certain amount of everything and to
be made in the united states . and that's just a great example. i can get hundreds of them, i don't want to get overly technical but if you start with the proposition that how do working people make more money and get better jobs as opposed, do we want trade? of course we want trade but we want trade on terms that help american workers. to help our farmers so senator, it sounds like you get accused of being republican, most of you are republican but lots of uart. it's not a republican outfit. a conservative free-market low taxes low regulation constitution pro-america organization. what i just heard from bob like kaiser is it's almost like republicans are saying it's not about the ceotelling me what he needs in a trade contract .
it's about us saying back to that ceo, that affects your thousands of workers in america that's what we are talking about . >> that's the message president trump brought forward to america in 2015 and 2016 that's what resonated and if you think about it, it's a history lesson. think about it, after world war i and world war ii the economies were devastated. it made sense for america to have these advantageous trade deals but we should have time-limited goes. what they've done is taken advantage of us at every turn and are under president trump leadership we went not for free trade, we went for reciprocal trade . he worked his heart out to make certain that we got even trade terms. america can compete any day, american companies can compete any day of the week if we have reciprocal trade. that's what bob like kaiser and president trump over and
that's why our economy took off like no other economy in the office in 2017. >> let me give three data points, first from the election of president trump selected until february, right before the covid hit we did 5000 manufacturing jobs and people thought were gone forever 86 million jobs over all. we've reduced the trade deficit in five of the previous 6/4 so that it takes a little while and reproduced the trade deficit and increase median family income by 6.8 percent. the highest in american history so this policy will work. and it will work for working people. the corporations are going to try to take care ofthemselves anyway, we don't have to focus on this . that's what they will do. and on this history thing let me remind people that we all talk about, i was in the reagan administration and ronald reagan very much
america first policy. they would talk about we want free trade and that's fine but if you look at what he did, heput imports of steel in the united states , semi-conducted in the united states, motorcycles in the united states so you have some of these fuel free trade organizations were saying he was the most contentious president since hoover. after he got out ofoffice . so this policy is very much the heart of how conservatives have fought and it's very much a change as bill said from this, it's made sense to get away our prosperity to help the rest of the world right after the second world war. that makes sense. it does not make sense in the 80s, 90s, it makes no sense at all. we have to keep taking care of our people. >> exactly and what you make, that was the whole discourse.
those jobs are coming back. it was a theme of hopelessness. back in the election i can remember barack obama and what magic wand does he have to bring these jobs back? abracadabra, you brought those jobs back to america. thank you president trump and thank you bob like kaiser . >> i have read bob like kaiser being called so many things. if he's a warlock that's awesome. take us back to the region. we started off talking about countries that are in a tough neighborhood around china. we had cpac in australia, we're talking about india. what is their response to the bob lightheiser donald trump trade? do they embrace it, did they realize it was a holding reality ?
>> they realize while it may be tough and they may lose some of the advantageous terms that they had dating back to world war ii they realize a strong america and strong alliance will be critical to stand up to china and let me remind you mine is our adversary at every level . they built their military now to point nobody could have imagined 20 years ago . military budget has increased people. we have more military stationed in japan and anywhere else in the world because of that tough neighborhood and we got to be there standing up every day from the military standpoint because they're approaching the east china sea, their threatening freedom . australia gets this. their economic predatory practices are also, pages subsidies to cheat against us and you can't allow chopped china access to the market the same way you two hours. they're doing everything they can watch all property and they have . we got to stand up to this bringing allies like india and australia and japan is the best way to push back in a way that they understand china only understands strength and that's why bob
lightheiser to maintain our strength as america militarily and economically. >> donald trump, i'm stepping on his applause lines. it's a great conversation, donald trump has decided to come to cpac. i don't know if that's popular in this room or not. [applause] as i said in previous cpac, keep that enthusiasm. but senator haggerty, i think you need to keep avoiding politics. if he stays involved talking about what bob lightheiser talks about that will help us win on these issues. >> president trump is theone that will bring unity to our party and will bring us together because his policies work . and i have such great
admiration for bob lightheiser, i'm not a good complement her and i can't even look at him but you work when you were in the cabinet area you didn't, you didn't, you were really a peacock. he worked starving yourself before the media, you are getting the contract on you are doing the hard work of negotiations and if i was ever at the white house late you were always there looking like you could spend a very long day going at arian you believe in this stuff. you and the president kind of picked up on getting it done. how important is it from your perspective as somebody who works alongside the president that his voice not be canceled or silenced on this question of being strong and defending working men and women of this country and on china. >> he had four years of extremely successful president. i have an enormous amount of respect.
not only respect personal affection for the president area i worked very hard with them and i've never seen a person work harder than the notion that you can cancel donald trump is absurd. that literally area if they could have canceled the they would have done in 2016. they tried to cancel them for four years. we ask you this, do you think that china what's the fact that you get canceled. >> i would say to the president and i said publicly before that in thefinal analysis , you're going to be judged by how you change relationships with china. that's what history is going to say. it's going to be a lot of footnotes and the fundamental question it was with reagan and the soviet union, that is the thing thathe did . and that was clearly the point. nobody took on china.
period. the situation got worse and worse and worse. the trade deficit was going up and we lost jobs and millions of jobs. there's no question that they view him as a very negative force. >> 's first term, four years i think are going to come down in history as the most consequential president that we ever seen in our life. >> you may have more. >> what i consider, i know a lot of you like to have had another four years but it was eight years of compliments in 4 years. can you all give your appreciation to senator bill haggerty and bob lightheiser.
>> you're watching c-span2. c-span2 was created by america's cable television companies and they brought to you by these television companies who provide c-span2 to viewers as a public service . >> secretary of state anthony blanton and defense secretary lloyd austin will travel together to japan and south korea next week . first overseas set for senior cabinet officials provided administration . the hill like the trip march 15 18 comes at a time of tense relations between washington and beijing as the bike andadministration reviews its policy