Biden Delivers Speech at Sichuan University; Says U.S. is Good for Debt

Vice President Joe Biden ended his trip to China by delivering a keynote speech at Sichuan University in Chengdu, the Los Angeles Times reports:

Referring to the debt-ceiling accord that averted such a default earlier this month, Biden passed blame from foreign soil on what he called the “strong voice” within the Republican Party that prevented an even stronger deal, and predicted it will ultimately be decided in the 2012 campaign.

“The American people are going to speak on that,” he said.

In a broad-ranging speech at a local university in the southwestern city of Chengdu on Sunday morning, Biden also said the United States and China have “a stake in one another’s success,” and touted the Obama administration’s efforts to bolster ties with the Asian super-power.

He also made a delicate pitch for China to foster greater openness and freedom to its people.

And from Reuters:

“You’re safe,” Biden told a university in Sichuan, the southwest province that is the second and last stop of his visit to China, in answer to a question about Washington’s ability to repay its debt.

“Please understand that no one cares more about this than we do, since Americans own 87 percent of all our financial assets and 69 percent of all our treasury bonds, while China owns 1 percent of our financial assets and 8 percent of our treasury bills, respectively,” Biden said at Sichuan University in the provincial capital, Chengdu.

“So our interest is not just to protect Chinese investment. We have an overarching interest in protecting the investment, while the United States has never defaulted and never will default.”


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