Mister Speaker, I offer this motion today to restore funding levels for a bipartisan priority to counter China.
The amendment adds $102 million to restore funding for the Countering Chinese Influence Fund to the current fiscal year level of $300 million.
We can all agree that the Chinese Communist Party is actively working against U.S. interests all over the globe – from space technology, to deceptive trading practices, to their outsized influence in pharmaceuticals and medical equipment.
The threat from China is significant, and now is not the time to retreat in our efforts to stop their destructive actions.
The Countering Chinese Influence Fund was established last year to address the growing reality that Beijing has a foothold in areas of critical importance, including in our own back yard.
China is now the largest investor in Latin America, practicing the same type of corrupt and predatory financing it uses elsewhere around the world.
The Commander of the U.S. Southern Command testified this year that some of China’s investments in the region could enable the Chinese military to threaten sea lanes vital to global commerce and the movement of U.S. forces.
He also expressed concern about Chinese telecommunications investments and how they could be detrimental to our security.
We must directly address China’s actions in order to protect our national security and maintain U.S. leadership throughout the world. This fund is one way to do that.
I hope Members on both sides of the aisle will agree that it is more productive to fund programs with bipartisan support than to fund partisan efforts that have no chance of becoming law.
I urge a yes vote on this motion, and I yield back the balance of my time.
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