New Bill: No Funds to China's Military Act
Washington, DC, December 4, 2020
Let’s say a government-controlled company started selling televisions at crazy low prices all over the world. Like a huge 4K flat screen for under $50 – many hundreds of dollars less than every other TV on the market. Let’s say the televisions work well and had great reviews, and because that government is subsidizing the cost, no other company could come close to those low prices.
How long would it take for that company’s competition to disappear? Not long, right?
Once other manufacturers were out of the picture, what kind of leverage would that company have over you? Could they get away with handing over your data to its government, blacklisting certain providers or TV shows, or even forcing certain content on your screen? Of course they could, and there’s not much you could do about it at that point.
The reality is China is trying to accomplish something along these lines, only much more sinister. Instead of televisions, they’re trying to exploit technologies that are significantly more complicated and vital to our national security. And they’re doing this for nefarious purposes.
The People’s Liberation Army (“PLA”) is the name of China’s military. The PLA controls a number of Communist Chinese companies that provide goods and services in industries where expertise and/or resources are scarce. Things like telecommunications equipment, electronics, chemical production, etc.
For example, 5G technology is expected to play a vital role in our nation's future, from cellular communications and broadband internet all the way to remote education and rural healthcare. When PLA-subsidized companies are allowed to flood the market with artificially low-priced 5G technology – subsidized by the government just like the television analogy above – this drives competition out of business. Once we have nowhere else to obtain these products, it ultimately creates a one-way reliance on China that they can abused as a means of political or military leverage.
If we end up in a conflict with China, or if they just want to “send a message”, what’s to stop them from throwing a switch and disrupting our national communications? Or withholding supply of vital chemicals and medicines to the U.S.? We'd have nowhere else to turn.
It makes zero sense from a national security standpoint for us to rely exclusively on Communist China for technologies that are vital to our nation.
That’s why earlier today, I introduced a new bill in the House that will prohibit the use of federal funds to purchase any goods or services that came from companies affiliated with the People's Liberation Army ("PLA") of China. It's called the "No Funds to China's Military Act" and it's an important step to (1) promote free and fair competition, and (2) to prevent the most dangerous elements of the Communist regime from doing harm to our country.