McConnell To Biden Admin. On China: Put ‘Actions Over Words’
‘China is America’s single greatest strategic adversary. The PRC is not inclined to do America or the West any favors. And political relations with Beijing have declined not because of insufficient economic ties, but because of China’s concerted efforts to intimidate its neighbors, spy on our communications, steal our technology, and undermine global free markets.’
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:
“As I’ve discussed this week, competition with China is a global proposition. But increasingly, the Biden Administration’s approach to the PRC reflects a faulty assessment of the challenges this competition presents.
“A few weeks ago, the Secretary of Commerce visited Beijing to tend the ‘soft power’ of American businesses in China. Unfortunately, the PRC had already targeted Secretary Raimondo with hard power, successfully stealing her official email in a cyberattack just weeks earlier.
“To the extent that economic relations with China are deteriorating, it’s because on President Xi’s watch, American and other foreign businesses are facing a state that increasingly expropriates companies, steals intellectual property, welds workers inside of apartment buildings, and forces business leaders to attend communist indoctrination sessions.
“So the Biden Administration is uninterested in negotiating trade deals with our allies and partners. But it seems desperate to double down on trade with communist China.
“PRC officials publicly mocked Secretary Raimondo’s efforts as ‘doomed to fail,’ and vowed quote, ‘China will never let down its vigilance because of a few ‘beautiful words’ from the U.S.’
“This is hardly the only time the Biden Administration has tilted at windmills – literally and figuratively. Remember special climate envoy John Kerry’s own recent trip to Beijing. He sought common ground on green energy goals with a nation that publicly pledged not to stop increasing carbon emissions for the better part of a decade.
“Unsurprisingly, our former colleague failed to secure a meeting with President Xi or his foreign minister. Perhaps, as I’ve discussed before, the CCP had already made that latter official disappear.
“China is America’s single greatest strategic adversary. The PRC is not inclined to do America or the West any favors. And political relations with Beijing have declined not because of insufficient economic ties, but because of China’s concerted efforts to intimidate its neighbors, spy on our communications, steal our technology, and undermine global free markets.
“The sooner the Biden Administration accepts that reality, the sooner the United States can engage more deeply with allies and partners who share our interest in preserving the peace.
“Russia’s escalation against Ukraine has taught allies in Europe a valuable lesson about the dangers of economic overreliance. Views are changing across Europe as our allies take a new look at the nature of the dictatorship in Beijing and its ‘friendship without limits’ with Moscow.
“The German foreign minister, for example, has publicly warned against replacing dependence on Russian gas with new economic dependence on the PRC.
“Asian allies have long been concerned with the PRC’s growing assertiveness. They understand that Russia is a Pacific nation with significant air and naval presence in the Far East.
“Americans who focus single-mindedly on the Indo-Pacific would do well to consider Russia’s own military power in that region. Just last month, the Russian and Chinese navies conducted a joint patrol off the coast of Alaska – the largest such operation in anyone’s memory.
“These revisionist powers will not go away. They will not be pacified by economic envoys.
“Strategic competition will continue to test America’s global interests and reach.
“It’s time to work more closely with friends and allies.
“It’s time to invest more seriously in hard power and industrial capacity.
“It’s time for the Biden Administration to prioritize actions over words.”
Related Issues: National Security, Russia, China, Ukraine