Despite early signs following the Tsai Ing-wen administration that Beijing would be willing to work with the new administration in Taipei, relations froze almost immediately after President Tsai’s inauguration in May 2016. While President Tsai used accommodating language and sought to meet her counterparts in Beijing halfway, the Chinese Communist Party countered that she had “failed” her test and therefore that it had no choice but to suspend ties between the two sides, a decision that launched the two sides of the Taiwan Strait into a new period of hostility. Despite early efforts by Beijing to blame Taipei for the diplomatic impasse and rising tensions, Beijing’s behavior abroad instead created more empathy and support for democratic Taiwan.