A dip into the pool reports: chair

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From a White House pool report filed by the New York Times’s Mark Landler, who on Wednesday covered Vice President Joe Biden‘s meeting in China with his Chinese counterpart Li Yuanchao:

VP Biden was received by Vice President Li Yuanchao at the Great Hall of the People with full ruffles and flourishes.

As a military honor guard stood rigidly at attention, VPOTUS entered a vast chamber, striding over to Li to shake hands. Biden greeted the members of Li’s delegation, and then introduced him to his own aides. …

Li recounted that Biden had told him, on walking in, that the first time he had been in the room, it was 1979 and he was there with a delegation of Senators to meet Deng Xiaoping. He has made four visits to China in all. …

Biden said he had the privilege of establishing a personal dialogue with President Xi.

“What impressed me then and impresses me now is that I believe he is committed, as you are, to managing our differences candidly and constructively,” he said.

Biden concluded by noting one change since 1979: he was seated in the most distant chair as the junior member of the delegation. “So I’ve made progress,” he said. “I’m in this chair.”