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Trump’s Praise of Ambassador Terry Branstad

Oct. 15, 2020 (EIRNS)—President Donald Trump’s warm accolades to Terry Branstad at the Des Moines, Iowa rally for the job he carried out as Trump’s Ambassador to China, has undoubtedly been noticed in relevant circles. Trump did not let up on his theme of “the China virus,” etc., during the rally, but Branstad’s respect for President Xi Jinping and respectful handling of relations with China during his three years or so he served as ambassador is well-known, in Beijing—and by Trump’s geopolitical enemies in London and Washington, who know his agenda is not the same as their warmongering.

Trump chose to give “one quick story” about his first meeting with Branstad, long before his presidential campaign was even on the table. Then-Iowa Governor Branstad had asked for a meeting on some trip to New York, and Trump said he figured he’d receive him for five minutes. “And he came up, a humble guy, great guy ... and I ended up spending an hour and a half.” Trump recounted that Branstad had told him a story in that meeting, about how some 35-40 years prior, when he was selling corn in China, he had met a man, and when he went home to his wife, he told her, “You know, I just met a future President of China.” Trump continued: And when I asked Branstad, “Who was that?” Branstad told him, “It was President Xi, who is now the President of China.... I could tell right from the beginning he was different, and he was.”

Trump interrupted his recounting of that story at that point, to note that he’s “not happy with what’s going on” with China, but then went on to praise Branstad for his hard work for Trump’s 2016 election. And when we won, he related, “I said you know, we have to pick somebody really smart for China, and I said, you know, the Governor of Iowa came to me and told me that story and I said, ‘how would you like to be Ambassador to China?’ And he said, ‘Sir, I’ve been [serving as governor] for 24 years. It would be an honor.’ And I have to tell you this,” President Trump concluded, “he represented us great with China. He represented us great. I never told that story.... We love him. He’s a special guy.”

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