Earlier this week, both of New York’s senators took the impending visit of Chinese President Hu Jintao as an opportunity to air their grievances with China, and to recommend that President Obama take a harsh tone with regard to human rights abuses and economic inequity.
Obama walked a fine line during the visit, mostly avoiding public criticism of his counterpart, while his press secretary, Robert Gibbs, assured reporters that the two had discussed some of the more controversial issues in private.
So how did Chuck Schumer think Obama handled it?
“I think the president is, was very well aware that President [Hu] Jintao and China have to move, and he was very polite and showed China the respect,” Schumer said, after the president’s speech in Schenectady this afternoon.
“But at the same time, said some of the things that had to be said. That on both economic and issues and human rights–in places like North Korea–China has to step up to the plate and live with its responsibilities.
“But he didn’t beat them over the head with it. He did it in a very positive way, and hopefully that can produce some results.”