Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy said this week that if elected next year, he would sign a “declaration of independence” from China. The candidate said that the United States had become too interdependent on the communist state.
The candidate made the comments during a campaign stop with Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R). The governor asked Ramaswamy about how he would handle foreign policy regarding China. “We cannot depend on an enemy for our modern way of life,” he said.
Ramaswamy further told Reynolds that the United States was never dependent on the Soviet Union for essential goods such as those currently manufactured by China.
“Today we depend on communist China for the way we live our lives, that doesn’t work over the long run,” Ramaswamy said.
He further argued that if former President Thomas Jefferson were still alive, “the declaration he would be signing is the Declaration of Independence from Communist China, that’s a declaration of independence that I will sign.”
The Declaration of Independence from China is what Thomas Jefferson would’ve signed if he were alive today. pic.twitter.com/qLbEACQ6Fw
— Vivek Ramaswamy (@VivekGRamaswamy) August 13, 2023
The entrepreneur-turned-candidate also said that the United States needed to show more resolve against Beijing. Ramaswamy said that the U.S. still cooperated with China because “we are scared” and that “we depend on them.”
He promised to “speak the hard truth.”
The candidate’s comments also come during particularly high tensions between Washington and Beijing. The United States protested China’s use of a spy balloon that crossed over the nation prior to being shot down off the coast of South Carolina.
In addition, the United States has grown increasingly wary of China’s intentions toward its neighbor Taiwan. Beijing has carried out a number of military exercises so far in 2023.
Last month, the Biden administration announced more than $300 million in military aid to Taiwan. The planned package is intended to deter a possible Chinese invasion and includes a number of weapons, including portable air defense systems.
Washington also previously approved $19 billion in sales of military gear to the country, including F-16 fighter jets.