I don't know if this thought experiment holds up, but I've been formulating it in my mind the past couple of days:
First and most important to this thought experiment: Imagine if Hillary Clinton had been elected.
Now, imagine if there were widespread, if unsubstantiated, reports that she had close ties to the Chinese government, that these ties were based mainly on shared monetary interests, and that she also stated, openly and roughly during the same time as these reports surfaced, she wanted to repeal (potential) actions taken against China for the incursions into the South China Sea.
Next, imagine if there were other widespread (if unsubstantiated) rumors that the Chinese government had actively tampered with her opponent's (i.e., Trump's) campaign in order to help get Clinton elected. Further, in these same reports, imagine that the Chinese government claimed to have dirt on Clinton that would make it politically and personally embarrassing for her to risk crossing China and having that dirt come to light. In this scenario, then, it would seem that Clinton had both financial and reputation-based reasons for why she might say that the U.S. should soften its stance towards China.
Next, imagine that President-Elect Clinton publicly denigrated intelligence agencies that suggested Chinese influence in helping undermine her opponent's credibility, despite the fact that the head of one of those agencies (let's just say the CIA) also, the week before the election, sent to congress an enigmatic, suggestive, and damaging letter about an ongoing investigation of her opponent, Donald Trump.
Finally, imagine if the press reporting some of these reports, including Fox News, were ignored or publicly denigrated at a news conference President-Elect Clinton held, a week before taking office. And then, soon after, a widely respected Republican questioned the President-Elect's legitimacy. (It couldn't be someone like Donald Trump himself, who questioned--openly and with little reproach from his own side--Barack Obama's legitimacy--for five plus years.) Let's say the person questioning Clinton's legitimacy is John McCain. And after McCain questions Clinton's legitimacy, imagine Clinton saying publicly that McCain has "done nothing" and is "all talk and no action."
Would you, my dear Trump-loving readers (of whom I'm sure I have many), be outraged or restrained in your response? Don't answer out loud. It's a thought experiment.
[The above has been revised for clarity.]