Slouching Toward Phase One | Council on Foreign Relations


Once an administration strikes a deal with China, it often ends up finding itself playing the role of China’s defense attorney. Admitting that China isn’t living up to the deal would cast doubt on the wisdom of the initial deal.

And right now, it would also raise a second awkward question for President Trump, namely what if anything is he willing to do ahead of the election if China isn’t living up to its end of the bargain. Going back to tariff threats might trigger a stock market sell-off (and it obviously wouldn’t do anything to help contain the virus).

Source: Slouching Toward Phase One | Council on Foreign Relations

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