This is a challenging moment in our relations with China. We have been getting cooperation from them on Iran, Syria, North Korea, and the valuation of their currency. Now, relations are strained because of dissident Chen Guangcheng’s escape from house arrest and flight to the U. S. embassy in Beijing. The Obama Administration wants to help Mr. Chen and his family without derailing the progress we have made with China on vital national security issues.
The timing is especially bad, given that Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner are on their way to China for long-scheduled meetings.
So when he should just shut up and let the President handle this crisis (which some are calling the most serious with China since Tiananmen Square back in 1989), Mitt Romney jumps in to declare that we must confront the Chinese on their one-child policy. The President is in a delicate diplomatic situation, and Mitt uses the moment for a purely political shout-out to the pro-life Republican base.
Great pandering, Mitt! Leadership? Statesmanship? Not so much.