Amid Republican criticism about provocations from Beijing, White House National Security Adviser Susan E. Rice will visit China this weekend in preparation for Chinese President Xi Jinping’s state visit to the White House next month.
An NSC spokesman said Ms. Rice will visit Beijing on Friday and Saturday to meet with senior Chinese officials and “underscore the United States’ commitment to building a more productive relationship between our two countries.” She will also discuss “areas of difference” ahead of Mr. Xi’s visit to the White House late next month.
As the plummeting Chinese financial system has roiled global markets, Republican Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin called on President Obama Monday to cancel Mr. Xi’s state visit. Mr. Walker, a candidate for the GOP presidential nomination, said the Chinese leader doesn’t deserve the honor of a state visit.
“Why would we be giving one of our highest things a president can do — and that is a state dinner for Xi Jinping, the head of China — at a time when all of these problems are pending out there?” Mr. Walker told reporters in Spartanburg, South Carolina. “We should say those … honors should only be bestowed upon leaders and countries that are allies and supporters of the United States, not just for China, which is a strategic competitor. Part of our problem right now is that they don’t respect us.”
China is suspected to be behind a massive data hack of federal government employee data that was uncovered earlier this year. Administration officials say Mr. Obama intends to raise the issue of hacking with Mr. Xi.