When President Joe Biden referred to Chinese President Xi Jinping as a "dictator" in the lead-up to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken appeared visibly frustrated.
When asked by CNN's M.J. Lee if he would continue to refer to Xi as a "dictator," Biden answered that, yes, he would.
It appeared that the president's remark did not make Blinken very happy, as the Daily Caller reported.
Biden held a solo press conference describing his meeting with Xi and discussing the agreements the U.S. has made with China.
Reporters could be heard shouting questions at Biden as he walked away from the stage, and the president responded in kind.
A reporter asked a question about the conflict between Israel and Hamas after the crowd had quieted down, and then someone asked Biden if he still refers "to President Xi as a dictator," noting the phrase that Biden "used earlier in the year."
“Well look, he is [a dictator],” the president said, offering comments that caused a notable ripple effect.
“I mean, he’s a dictator in the sense that he is a guy that runs a country that is a communist country and a form of government totally different than ours," Biden said.
Blinken pops his butt plug when Biden calls Xi a dictator… pic.twitter.com/krSmD9wua2
— James Woods (@RealJamesWoods) November 17, 2023
On their trip to San Francisco, California, Biden and Xi had their first face-to-face meeting in a year.
The White House had earlier stated that the two leaders would discuss "maintaining open lines of communication" between their countries and a "range of regional and global issues."
The two sides have settled their differences and agreed to resume military-to-military communications and their efforts to curb fentanyl production.
Much of the fentanyl that has been flooding across the U.S.-Mexico border in recent years has originated in China. Xi has committed to push to "dramatically curtail" the production of fentanyl precursors.
Chinese state media outlets seemed hopeful a few days before the meeting that Xi would obtain what he wanted from Biden after their meeting.