Dissident Jimmy Lai: Biden won't protect Hong Kong freedom fighters, Trump already is

"I do think that the way that President Trump deals with China is the right way by playing hard ball," said Hong Kong media baron and democracy activist Jimmy Lai. "I don't think Biden would have such a strong impact."

Published: September 30, 2020 4:06pm

Updated: December 16, 2020 10:03pm

Hong Kong dissident Jimmy Lai said he is worried that a Joe Biden White House won't protect pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong the way that he believes President Trump is.

The media tycoon was arrested last month under a harsh new national security law that mainland China imposed on Hong Kong as part of an intensifying crackdown. After a public outcry by pro-democracy activists, Lai was released on bail. Earlier this month, a court in Hong Kong found him not guilty of criminal intimidation charges stemming from a separate 2017 case.

Lai's Apple Daily news outlet has also reportedly been searched by Chinese authorities wary of Lai's outspoken criticism of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

"If he becomes president, I'm sure President Biden will play gentlemen, with China [in a way] that President Trump would not," Lai told Just the News in a video interview. "I think the pandemic, the Wuhan Virus, is a Pearl Harbor to the people of the U.S. and the free world that woke up the people to the bad behavior of CCP, which is detrimental to their lives. They feel very uneasy about it, their decency and values were hurt by it. And I think the people who have a resentment about CCP will be the determinants of the politics in the U.S." 

"But I do think that the way that President Trump deals with China is the right way, by playing hard ball," Lai continued. "I don't think Biden would have such a strong impact. And I haven't seen Biden being very strong against China. I'm afraid that if he becomes president, he will be more reconciliatory to China than President Trump."

Peter Navarro, White House trade and manufacturing policy adviser, told Just the News in an interview that he agreed with an assessment by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence that China prefers that President Trump lose re-election in November.

"Well, there's no question that's true," Navarro said. "Donald J. Trump is the toughest — only president — he's the toughest and only president to stand up to China since Nixon and Kissinger went to China back in the '70s. I mean, every president since then has allowed in some way ... the Chinese Communist Party [to] have their way with the United States economy, and also our defense sector."

Lai said he was confident that Trump would ultimately prove victorious over Biden.

"I don't think President Trump will be will be defeated," Lai said. "I have no doubt he will be reelected. Because people in the U.S. know that in this time, they need President Trump — his record of reviving the economy and making [the] U.S., which is an energy importer, into an exporter, which also brought about the peace in Middle East because the U.S. doesn't have to depend on the [Middle East] for the oil, for energy. That makes it easier to solve the problems in the Middle East."

Last month, Lai thanked President Trump for his support at a White House press conference in response to a question by Just the News

"I hear he is a wonderful gentleman, certainly a brave man," Trump said. "And I send him best wishes."

“Thank you Mr @realDonaldTrump#HK can’t be successful without freedom and it can’t be the international financial center it once was. It is very sad,” Lai, founder of The Apple Daily newspaper, tweeted one day after Trump's greetings.

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"Whether to charge me, to put me in jail, or whatever they do to me, will depend on the political situation, especially with the US," Lai continued. "They will do what they have to do to me, according to political expedience, not about law, not about the legal procedures. I'm not thinking about it, because I would not know what's going to happen. But I just hope that President Trump, who has been supporting Hong Kong, and myself thank him for that — will get reelected. And we are more assured of the political support and the support of the American people. And this is the greatest salvation for us. We need the American people's voice and the voice of the free world, to help us."

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