Following the shooting down of the Chinese spy balloon this past week after it had been “violating” American airspace for days, President Joe Biden and his speechwriters would “likely modify” the section of his State of the Union speech concerning China that is scheduled for Tuesday night.
The administration is juggling Beijing’s threat of consequences for shooting down the spy balloon as Biden’s speechwriters work to help the president highlight a number of accomplishments during the State of the Union address this week, according to Axios. The president will try to be “nimble” and would have to “likely rewrite” his section on China.
On Thursday, American citizens found the surveillance balloon drifting over their houses for the first time. “We are convinced that this high-altitude surveillance balloon belongs to the [People’s Republic of China],” a top defense official stated last week when the news surfaced.
The alleged Chinese spy balloon was then shot down by the military on Saturday morning while it was over the Atlantic Ocean near the Carolina coast, after drifting around the continental United States for many days.
Residents of South Carolina captured video of the spy balloon being blasted out of the sky by the US military on Saturday:
According to a statement from Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III on Saturday, “this afternoon, at the command of President Biden, U.S. fighter jet assigned to U.S. Northern Command succeeded in bringing down a high altitude surveillance balloon deployed by and belonging to the People’s Republic of China (PRC) over the sea off of the coastline of South Carolina in U.S. airspace.”
The State of the Union address and the Chinese spy balloon, however, occur at a very pivotal moment in Biden’s presidency.
The list of inquiries the incoming Republican-controlled House plans to conduct against the Biden administration will eventually include the Chinese spy balloon, which sparked indignation from both political parties.
In addition to China, the House Republicans have planned a spate of inquiries against Biden. In the end, the Chinese surveillance balloon just fuels the flames.
Despite this, Axios noted that Biden will wish to utilize the speech to attempt to keep his administration’s ability to work with China after Biden and Chinese leader Xi Jinping met last Nov. and agreed to establish additional channels for their officials to speak on a more regular basis. Biden is reportedly preparing to run again for the presidency.
According to reports, climate discussions are being placed between John Kerry, Biden’s Special Presidential Envoy for Climate (SPEC), and his Chinese counterpart. Additionally, Janet Yellen, the Treasury Secretary, recently met with her Chinese counterpart in Zurich.