Tom Cotton: U.S. needs to stop chasing Chinese officials ‘like lovestruck teenagers’

Sen. Tom Cotton took a shot at Biden administration officials for their efforts to meet with Chinese officials, comparing them to “lovestruck teenagers.”

“Biden administration officials should stop chasing after their Chinese communist counterparts like lovestruck teenagers. It’s embarrassing and it’s pathetic,” Cotton (R-Ark.) said during an interview on “Fox News Sunday,” when asked about Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s visit to Singapore, where he attended a conference also attended by his Chinese counterpart, Li Shangfu.

The two shook hands at a dinner Friday — an unexpected greeting, after China rejected a U.S. request for a meeting during the annual defense and security forum that Austin had traveled to Singapore for.

The handshake and the meeting request were both part of a U.S. effort to smooth tensions with China, which have long simmered but reached a boiling point in recent months after a Chinese spy balloon was spotted flying over the U.S. Those tensions were evident again after a Chinese warship approached an American destroyer and a Canadian frigate going through the Taiwan Strait over the weekend.

But Cotton believes those efforts “project weakness to China,” he said.

“It encourages them to do things like buzz our aircrafts or come within a few hundred yards of our ships. It encourages them to send spy balloons floating all across America,” he said.

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