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Jon Huntsman on Foreign Policy

Republican UT Governor


China is our most important relationship of the 21st century

Q: Your vision for dealing with China?

HUNTSMAN: We have the most important relationship of the 21st Century with China. We've got to make it work. Of course we have challenges with them. But it's nonsense to think you can slap a tariff on China the first day that you're in office, as Gov. Romney would like to do. You've got to sit down and sort through the issues of trade. They're all interrelated. And to have a president who actually understands how that relationship works would serve the interest of the people in this country, from an economics standpoint and from a security standpoint.

ROMNEY: I'm sorry, Governor, you were, the last two years, implementing the policies of this administration in China.

HUNTSMAN: I think it's important to note, as they would say in China, that he doesn't quite understand this situation. What he is calling for would lead to a trade war. It makes for a nice applause line but it's far different from the reality in the US-China relationship.

Source: WMUR 2012 GOP New Hampshire debate , Jan 7, 2012

80 million bloggers in China will take China down

Romney: The US should go before the WTO and bring an action against China as a currency manipulator. People say, "Well, you'll start a trade war." There's one going on right now, folks. They're stealing our jobs. And we're going to stand up to China.

Huntsman: I've tried to figure this out for 30 years of my career. First of all, I don't think, Mitt, you can take China to the WTO on currency-related issues. Second, I don't know that this country needs a trade war with China. Who does it hurt? Our small businesses in South Carolina; our exporters; our agriculture producers. We don't need that at a time when China is about to embark on a generational position. So what should we be doing? We should be reaching out to our allies & constituencies within China. They're called the young people. They're called the internet generation. There are 500 million internet users in China. And 80 million bloggers. And they are bringing about change, the likes of which is going to take China down.

Source: 2011 debate in South Carolina on Foreign Policy , Nov 12, 2011

Get used to 21st century of US and China on the world stage

What does a trade war with China do? That disadvantages our small businesses. It disadvantages our exporters. It disadvantages our agricultural producers. So I say, for the first and the second-largest economies in the world, we have no choice; we have t find common ground. We have to of course use our trade laws, and use them very, very aggressively.

But at the end of the day, we've got to find more market-opening measures. We've got to get more governors from this country together with governors from provinces of China, mayors together with mayors, and exploit the opportunities that exist for exporters. That's a job-creator in this country. It's a huge job creator. And we have to get used to the fact that as far as the eye can see into the 21st century, it's going to be the United States and China on the world stage.

Source: 2011 GOP debate at Dartmouth College, NH , Oct 11, 2011

We need diplomatic corps to exhibit democracy abroad

Q: [to Santorum]: If the security situation were to fall apart in Iraq in 2012 would you support sending US troops back to the region?

SANTORUM: I'm not for taking them out of the region. I believe we need to listen to our generals, and our generals ar being very, very clear that we need 20,000 to 30,000 troops. We want victory.

HUNTSMAN: We do have a difference of opinion here in terms of overall foreign policy. We're at a critical juncture in our country. We don't project the goodness of this country in terms of liberty, democracy, open markets, and human rights, with a weak core. And right now in this country, our core, our economy, is broken. And we don't shine that light today. We're 25% of the world's GDP. The world is a better place when the US is strong. So guiding anything that we talk about from a foreign policy standpoint needs to be fixing our core. But after 10 years of fighting the war on terror, people are ready to bring our troops home from Afghanistan.

Source: 2011 GOP Google debate in Orlando FL , Sep 22, 2011

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Page last updated: Mar 24, 2013