Donald Trump has come under the cosh for appearing to praise the president of China, Xi Jinping’s recent power grab that may see him rule the country for life.
This comes after the ruling Communist party in China announced that leader Xi Jinping was eliminating the two-term limit for presidency, paving the way for him to rule indefinitely.
While the unprecedented move has drawn heavy criticism among liberals and pro-democracy activists, Trump seems to be in support of it after his remarks at a fund-raising event in Florida.
In an audio recording aired by CNN, President Trump hailed Xi for the development, telling his cheering supporters: “Maybe we will give that a shot.”
“He’s now president for life,” the 71-year-old US president said, eliciting chuckles from the crowd of Republican donors. “And look, he was able to do that. I think it’s great.”
The controversial president garnered even more laughs when he quipped: “Maybe we’ll have to give that a shot someday.”
Though the US leader’s comments struck a jocular tone, many on Twitter voiced concern over the prospect of an indefinite Trump presidency.
“Whether this was a joke or not, talking about being President for life like Xi Jinping is the most unAmerican sentiment expressed by an American President,” said Democrat Ro Khanna, a California congressman.
“George Washington would roll over in his grave.”
I have refrained from just being anti Trump. But whether this was a joke or not, talking about being President for life like Xi Jinping is the most unAmerican sentiment expressed by an American President. George Washington would roll over in his grave. https://t.co/y6ScZslUqe
— Ro Khanna (@RoKhanna) March 4, 2018
A major criticism of Trump has been his admiration for strong male rulers around the world, with many arguing that it’s antithetical to American values.
But the president couldn’t care less, as he recently ordered the Pentagon to organise a military parade as is done in dictatorships such as North Korea and Russia.