News

Economy & Business

Sanders: China Has Made ‘More Progress’ on Extreme Poverty than Any Country in History

Senator Bernie Sanders at a campaign event in Davenport, Iowa, August 19, 2019. (Al Drago/Reuters)

Presidential contender Bernie Sanders spoke highly about China’s leadership in a new interview, saying that the Chinese government has made great strides in combating extreme poverty despite moving in a more authoritarian direction.

“China is a country that is moving unfortunately in a more authoritarian way in a number of directions,” the Vermont senator said in his interview with The Hill. “But what we have to say about China in fairness to China and its leadership is, if I’m not mistaken, they have made more progress in addressing extreme poverty than any country in the history of civilization, so they’ve done a lot of things for their people.”

Since the 1980s, the number of people living in extreme poverty in China has dropped dramatically. By 2015, the country’s “poverty headcount ratio,” the percentage of its citizens living on less than $1.90 a day, was at 0.7, according to the World Bank. But even so, by the end of 2017, 30.46 million rural people still lived below China’s poverty line, the National Bureau of Statistics reported.

Sanders also said that while he agrees that China looks out for its own interests first, he disagrees with calling the country an “existential threat” to the American worker, as some have warned.

“Their economy now is struggling but I think it is absolutely possible for us to have a positive working relationship with China,” Sanders said.

China and the U.S. have escalated their war of reciprocal tariffs over the past year, as President Trump continues to demand that Beijing change what he says are unfair trade practices, such as stealing intellectual property and manipulating the country’s currency.

China announced Friday that it will retaliate against the Trump administration’s latest tariffs with duties on $75 billion worth of U.S. goods. Tariffs of between 5 and 10 percent will be imposed on September 1 and December 15, the same dates the U.S. plans to slap a 10 percent tariff on the $300 billion worth of Chinese exports it has not yet taxed.

Over the weekend, Sanders said that as president he would be open to using tariffs to provide leverage in negotiations with the world’s second-largest economy.

“If it is used in a rational way within the context of a broad, sensible trade policy, it is one tool that’s available,” Sanders told CNN. “We need a rational trade policy today, not what Trump is doing by tweet.”

Send a tip to the news team at NR.

Most Popular

How to Avoid a China-Led World Order

As the COVID-19 crisis has unfolded, it has opened our eyes to China’s rapidly expanding role in the international order and global economy. Beijing’s outsize role in the World Health Organization has come under attack, as has the muscular diplomacy used by China’s foreign ministry in responding to ... Read More

How to Avoid a China-Led World Order

As the COVID-19 crisis has unfolded, it has opened our eyes to China’s rapidly expanding role in the international order and global economy. Beijing’s outsize role in the World Health Organization has come under attack, as has the muscular diplomacy used by China’s foreign ministry in responding to ... Read More
Education

Science, Coronavirus, and Notre Dame

A few weeks back, the University of Notre Dame outlined its plan for reopening campus in the fall, detailing the way in which the administration hopes to bring students back to South Bend to resume in-person classes. Like the overwhelming majority of colleges and universities in the U.S., Notre Dame shifted all ... Read More
Education

Science, Coronavirus, and Notre Dame

A few weeks back, the University of Notre Dame outlined its plan for reopening campus in the fall, detailing the way in which the administration hopes to bring students back to South Bend to resume in-person classes. Like the overwhelming majority of colleges and universities in the U.S., Notre Dame shifted all ... Read More
Elections

Biden’s Middle-Class Tax Pledge

Biden is pledging not to raise taxes on anyone making less than $400,000 a year. As I note in my Bloomberg Opinion column, Democratic proposals to increase income taxes keep getting narrower in scope. In 1993, President Bill Clinton and a Democratic Congress raised income taxes on households making more than ... Read More
Elections

Biden’s Middle-Class Tax Pledge

Biden is pledging not to raise taxes on anyone making less than $400,000 a year. As I note in my Bloomberg Opinion column, Democratic proposals to increase income taxes keep getting narrower in scope. In 1993, President Bill Clinton and a Democratic Congress raised income taxes on households making more than ... Read More