Many American business leaders would be happy to have President Donald Trump talk tough on trade in his meetings Thursday and Friday with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
But not too tough.
While many companies and industries are hoping Trump can win concessions from America's largest U.S. trading partner, they're much less eager to see the two countries square off in a trade war.
"They would like the Trump administration to advocate for [a level playing field]," Tom Manning, a University of Chicago law professor and former CEO of Cerberus Asia, told CNBC. "They do not, however, want the Trump administration to disrupt what has become a stable atmosphere for American business in China."
Trump's blistering rhetoric condemning China's trade practices generated cheers of support on the campaign trail.
"We can't continue to allow China to rape our country," Trump told his cheering supporters last year on at a rally in Indiana. "There are no jobs because China has our jobs."
Trump has accused China of manipulating its currency to boost its exports and criticized companies for shifting production to China.
Since taking office, Trump has kept up his belligerent broadsides on China's trade policies. Last week, he warned in a tweet that the meeting at his Mar-a-Lago resort on Thursday and Friday will be "very difficult" and "American companies must be prepared to look at other alternatives."
Some business leaders and industry associations share Trump's frustration with Beijing's trade policies, arguing that China has been flooding the U.S. market with cheap products, while tightly controlling foreign investment.
U.S. automakers complain about high Chinese tariffs on American imports compared to U.S. duties on Chinese vehicles. Tech companies have long cited a range of trade disparities, including China's weak patent protections for U.S. intellectual property.
But retaliation by the U.S. could spark an even broader response from Beijing.