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International

Trump: Chinese meddling in U.S. politics is a “bigger problem” than Russian

10:35, Monday, 15 October, 2018
Trump: Chinese meddling in U.S. politics is a “bigger problem” than Russian

President Donald Trump threatened to impose another round of tariffs on China and warned that Chinese meddling in U.S. politics is a “bigger problem” than Russian involvement in the 2016 election.

Asked in an interview with CBS’s “60 Minutes” whether he wants to push China’s economy into a depression, Trump said “no” before comparing the country’s stock-market losses since the tariffs first launched to those in 1929, the start of the Great Depression in the U.S.

“I want them to negotiate a fair deal with us. I want them to open their markets like our markets are open,” Trump said in the interview that aired Sunday, while adding that more tariffs “might” be in the mix. So far, the U.S. has imposed three rounds of tariffs on Chinese imports totaling $250 billion, prompting China to retaliate against U.S. products. The president previously has threatened to hit virtually all Chinese imports with duties.

Questioned about his relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin’s efforts to influence the 2016 presidential election, Trump quickly turned back to China. “They meddled,” he said of Russia, “but I think China meddled too.”

“I think China meddled also. And I think, frankly, China ... is a bigger problem,” Trump said, as interviewer Lesley Stahl interrupted him for “diverting” from a discussion of Russia. He didn’t provide evidence in the interview of China’s involvement in the last election or its involvement in the current election cycle.

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