A Twitter post today reminded us of that time when Ambassador Huang Ping, Consul General of the People’s Republic of China, paid a visit to Connecticut to meet with Governor Ned Lamont, Lt. Governor Susan Bysiewicz, former Secretary of State Denise Merrill and even CT Attorney General William Tong, the first Chinese-American Attorney General in the U.S.
That meeting took place on March 15, 2019, in Hartford.
Shortly after the meeting, a Chinese think tank released a report on June 22, 2019, that rated all 50 U.S. Governors on how "friendly" they were with Beijing.
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo even warned US governors on February 8, 2020, in a speech to the National Governors Association, that China was, in fact, watching them.
Then Covid arrived, with the World Health Organization (WHO) declaring the beginning of the pandemic on March 11, 2020, followed by Trump's March 13, 2020, declaration that Covid-19 was a national emergency.
On April 2, 2020, Lamont leveraged his previous relationship with Ambassador Huang Ping to humbly request for China's assistance in obtaining personal protective equipment (PPE), including face masks that never actually stop covid. Lamont said, "we stand ready to follow-up on any suggestions you might have for increasing our access to your great country's manufacturing systems." in the request.
On May 12, 2020, Lamont welcomed a massive shipment from China that included six million surgical masks, 500,000 protective masks, 100,000 surgical gowns and 100,000 temporal thermometers. It seems the relationship with Ambassador Ping paid off.
Lamont patted himself on the back for securing the Chinese-made PPE items, saying “I think I got tired of what, what’s going to come up from Washington, going down on bended knee. I said, ‘Let’s see what we can take control of ourselves.’ ”
“We’ve delivered more surgical masks in the last two days than we’d given away in the last two months,” Lamont bragged at the press briefing, adding that the sweetheart deal with China provides "more flexibility".
Tong said, "I was proud to join with Chinese Ambassador Huang Ping, the Consul General in New York, and Fairfield County based Chinese-Americans to facilitate the largest ever shipment of PPE to our state’s frontline first responders and medical personnel." Tong took credit for initially reaching out to Ambassador Ping in March 2020 to make the request.
For some reason, though, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China removed the article that announced the original 2019 meeting with the Connecticut Governor, Lt. Governor, Secretary of State and Attorney General. This meeting preceded the PPT request by a year. Why remove it?
Fortunately, the Internet Wayback Machine crawled the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website on July 22, 2020, and saved a copy of the article, which we are sharing here for posterity.