President Joe Biden said China under Xi Jinping has “real problems” while speaking at an event in San Francisco on Tuesday, a day before he is set to hold a crucial summit meeting with the Chinese President in an attempt to normalize fractured ties between the two countries.
Addressing the audience at a fundraiser, Biden presented Xi as an example of “how reestablishing American leadership in the world is taking hold” and added, “They’ve [China] have got real problems,” according to AFP.
Biden did not elaborate further and it was unclear if he was referring to China’s recent economic slowdown.
Earlier on Tuesday, Biden said his primary goal for the meeting was to normalize the frayed relationship between the two world powers but said he would not shy away from confronting Xi on matters he is concerned about.
Biden said he wanted either side to be able to “pick up the phone and talk to one another if there’s a crisis,” and ensure that the two militaries are in contact with each other.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle Biden also took a swipe at his domestic rival, former President Donald Trump, at the fundraiser saying his recent “vermin” remarks were similar to the rhetoric used in Nazi Germany.
Both Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris attended a fundraiser at San Francisco’s Merchants Exchange building and met with California Gov. Gavin Newsom and the city’s mayor London Breed. Biden’s presence at the fundraiser drew a large crowd of pro-Palestinian protestors calling for a ceasefire in the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. Some protesters chanted “cease-fire now” and “Genocidal Joe, he must go” while others demanded the pulling of all aid to Israel. The protestors, however, were unable to directly confront the president.