Saturday, August 06, 2011

Republican candidates and their China Business Connections

The Cable at Foreign Policy has the skinny on a clash between Huntsman and Romney over their respective China businesses:
Bain Capital, the firm that Romney founded, has been active for years in trying to help Chinese corporations acquire U.S. technology firms. In 2005, Bain teamed up with Haier Group, China's largest appliance maker, and private equity firm Blackstone Group in a failed attempt to acquire Maytag for more than $1 billion. In 2007, Bain joined Huawei Technologies in an attempt to acquire 3Com for $2.2 billion in cash, but later abandoned the deal because it could not satisfy the objections of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS). The CFIUS review board was concerned because 3com makes hacking software for the U.S. military and Huawei has ties to the Chnese military.
Ugly, eh? But.... Romney left Bain in 1999. Meanwhile, there's Huntsman:
Last week, The Washington Post reported that Huntsman's company has reduced its workforce in the United States and it moving its "center of gravity" to Asia. His father, Jon Huntsman, Sr., founded the multibillion-dollar chemical company. According to Hunstman Corps' 2010 annual financial report, the company has numerous holdings in China, several joint ventures with Chinese firms, and owns exactly 20 Chinese subsidiaries.
Not much more to say. A huge problem with US China policy is that too many people involved in it are also involved in China businesses.
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Okami said...

One fly in the ointment with these two guys. They are pretty much despised by the primary voters and will probably burn out when South Carolina's primary turns to someone more palatable.

Romney's big issue is Romneycare, which has been a disaster. Then there are the flip flops.

Huntsman has serious issues with loyalty. Erick Erickson will probably sink his nomination.

The guy I'd put money on and vote for is Rick Perry. Everyone loves Rick Perry who votes in Republican primaries. The only person who could beat Rick Perry is Chris Christie, and he said he isn't running no matter what.

I was willing to give Bachman a chance till I heard her try to run talking points past Laura Ingraham.

Pawlenty is basically VP material.

Marc said...

To be fair, don't forget the Democrat side with the Clinton's holdings in China as well as Dianne Feinstein and her hubby's.

Readin said...

So you're saying Romney started a business and after he left the business the people who took over started trying to help China? Sounds like a non-story.

The Huntsman thing is more problematic except that he won't get the nomination because he's not very conservative. A big part of the Republican base is too fed up moderate Republicans who cave to higher spending at the first sign of trouble. Someone as far to the left as Huntsman isn't likely to get the nomination. His accepting an appointment from Obama will probably cause him problems too. That's sad because he accepted an appointment as Ambassador for the United States of America, not as Ambassador for Obama. His service to his country shouldn't be held against him.

Michael Turton said...

Yes, but I've comment numerous times on Dem connections. I always present the issue as "bipartisan" or actually, post-partisan. Many who comment on China have businesses there.

Anonymous said...

Well, however valid the charges of hypocrisy, and whatever his chances of actually being nominated, I still appreciate Huntsman bringing this issue out into the open. I'm also happy to see that Randall Schriver is involved in his campaign, as he has been trying to drive the point home for some time that the Chinese have gotten very good at influencing U.S. foreign policy in hidden ways.

Anonymous said...

At the very least the Republicans are actually injecting this issue into their debate. This demonstrates the seriousness with which the issue is being addressed, whereas the Democrats tend to sidestep the issue altogether.