China does not "seem to want" a democracy, so there is "a question" over whether to consider its leader, President Xi Jinping as a dictator, presidential candidate and former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg continued to argue during a town hall event.
"It's a question of what is a dictator," Bloomberg answered during a CNN Town Hall in South Carolina on Wednesday, reports the New York Post. "They don't have a democracy in the sense that they have general elections. That is true. They do have a system where a small group of people appoints the head."
He added, over the past 20 or 30 years, there have been several people who have the same position as Xi.
Bloomberg made the comments after being asked about remarks he had made during Tuesday night's Democratic Party debate when he would not call Xi a dictator.
"In terms of whether he's a dictator, he does serve at the behest of the Politburo, of their group of people, but there's no question he has an enormous amount of power," Bloomberg said Tuesday. "You can negotiate with him."
The former mayor told CNN on Wednesday he does not agree with the Chinese people on their stance.
"I think they'd be better off opening things up, having freedom of the press, which they don't have, having lots of different cultures come in," he said. "That's the great strength of America. They don't seem to think that, and I think we should work as hard as we can to change that."
However China is the world's second-largest economic power, so the United States "should get used to the fact that China is going to keep growing and become stronger," Bloomberg said. "We have to figure out a way to work with them while protecting our industries and protecting our country militarily."
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