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Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

In the coming weeks and months, Democrats plan to argue that President Trump "rolled over" for China as the coronavirus crisis worsened because "he sought a deal to begin undoing the damage caused by his trade policies," per a new memo reviewed by Axios.

Why it matters: Top Trump campaign officials said they'll paint Joe Biden as "soft" on China as a major line of attack during the 2020 race. The new memo by Democratic National Committee officials outlines a rebuttal as Biden prepares for the general election race against Trump.

  • This new memo is the sixth in a series called "In Focus: Trump’s Disastrous Coronavirus Response."

Trump's campaign this month released a controversial digital ad bashing Biden as overly friendly and deferential to Beijing.

  • The president's team has sought to turn a critical focus on the former vice president's past posture toward China to counter criticism of Trump's handling of the coronavirus or approaches to China.

What they're saying: The DNC's War Room writes in the memo that it's an understatement to call Trump weak on China and that he "rolled over in a way that has been catastrophic for our country" and "put himself and his political fortunes first."

  • The memo quotes a NYT article describing internal disputes in the administration over dealing with China, trade talks and the virus.
  • It also cites Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and economic adviser Larry Kudlow talking about how the coronavirus might interfere with trade negotiations.

The other side: "They are only doing this because Joe Biden has a big China problem," Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh told Axios in an email.

  • "Democrats wailed endlessly about Trump's tough tactics on China, so it's a joke that they would now try to paint him as soft."
  • "Joe Biden called the President's travel restrictions on China 'xenophobic' and 'reactionary.' All this memo does is prove that Joe Biden and his Democrat allies are not serious people."

Go deeper

Fed signals it could yank economic support quicker as inflation sticks around

Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell testifies during a hearing before Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee today. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The Federal Reserve will consider pulling back economic support sooner "as the threat of persistently high inflation has grown," chair Jerome Powell said during a congressional hearing on Tuesday.

Why it matters: This is the biggest signal yet the Fed is backing away from its stance that soaring prices would be fleeting — a change that could shift its policies that underpin the economy.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
Updated 1 hour ago - Economy & Business

Crypto meets the real world

Illustration: Megan Robinson/Axios

The two largest countries in the world seem intent on effectively banning their citizens from participating in crypto, which poses a serious threat to the crypto agenda.

Why it matters: The crypto world is global — but the real world is fragmented into nation-states, each of which claims control of what happens within its borders.

Meadows cooperating with House Jan. 6 select committee

Mark Meadows. Photo: Yuri Gripas/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows is cooperating with the House select committee in charge of investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, the panel said Tuesday.

Driving the news: Meadows, who failed to appear before the panel earlier this month, is believed to have insight into former President Trump's role in efforts to stop the certification of President Biden's election win.