Biden Admin. China Approach Fails To Keep Pace With ‘Pacing Threat’
‘The Chinese military is outpacing us in pivotal military capabilities like hypersonics, precise long-range fires, and even naval vessels… Chinese agents are engaged in an aggressive effort to steal sensitive Western technologies and government secrets… the Administration’s envoys have been laughed out of Beijing’
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks today on the Senate floor regarding competition with China:
“One year ago, President Biden met for the first time as President with Chairman Xi, the head of the Chinese Communist Party. And he pledged that the United States would compete ‘vigorously’ with the PRC.
“Well, one year later, the President and the Chairman will meet again today. So let’s take stock of whether the Biden Administration is living up to its pledge of ‘vigorous’ competition.
“The stakes of this competition simply cannot be overstated.
“The Chinese military is outpacing us in pivotal military capabilities like hypersonics, precise long-range fires, and even naval vessels. Beijing has secured a commanding share of the rare minerals necessary to create critical supply chains.
“Chinese agents are engaged in an aggressive effort to steal sensitive Western technologies and government secrets. And the PRC consistently signals its disdain for national sovereignty, human rights, and the free flow of commerce.
“In other words, strategic competition with China is going to determine the course of the next century of American history. And yet, the Biden Administration has too often met this historic moment with weakness and naivete. Time and time again, it has sacrificed competition on the altar of green climate policy.
“In the Administration’s quest to turn the American automobile industry electric, it has apparently made peace with sending American tax dollars to the Chinese industries that dominate battery-making inputs.
“In pursuit of grand climate diplomacy, the Administration’s envoys have been laughed out of Beijing by a state that keeps on increasing its carbon emissions and has no plan to start cutting them literally for years.
“And meanwhile, the consequences of the Biden Administration’s neglect for American hard power are only getting more dangerous.
“The PRC is acquiring new weapons as much as 6 times faster than the United States. And for each of the past two years, it announced a 7% increase in military spending.
“But even as the President’s national defense strategy identifies China as ‘the pacing threat’, his defense budget requests haven’t even kept up with inflation.
“Chairman Xi has gone out of his way to align closely with fellow adversaries of the West, stepping up joint military exercises with Putin’s forces and helping both Moscow and Tehran endure Western sanctions.
“China has made military competition with the West a top priority. We can’t afford to ignore this challenge.
“Our allies certainly aren’t. Japan, South Korea, Australia, and other Indo-Pacific partners are investing heavily in their own defense.
“Taiwan is seeking to make itself a harder target for Chinese aggression. But America must continue to do its part.
“We have to keep investing in the sort of defense industrial base that can sustain this armament and strengthen our own military for effective deterrence.
“The Senate has multiple opportunities before us – in both supplemental measures and full-year defense appropriations – to do exactly that. And we can’t afford not to seize these opportunities.”
Related Issues: China, America's Military, National Security