All Republicans on the House Homeland Security Committee wrote a letter to the Biden White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan. They acknowledged that some Biden nominees and appointees have addressed China, but the lawmakers “remain troubled that you have not yet provided definitive clarity on how the administration plans on continuing the productive measures from the last four years to protect our homeland from this far-reaching CCP threat.”
The Trump administration took a combative stance toward China, in terms of trade tariffs, electronic privacy and on human rights violations in Hong Kong and against minorities in Xinjiang province. The Biden administration has recognized China as a threat but is expected to take a less aggressive approach than the prior administration.
China’s foreign minister, Wang Yi, has said he believes Biden represents a “new window of hope” for the country’s relationship with the United States. The Biden administration will “return to a sensible approach, resume dialogue with China, restore normalcy to the bilateral relations and restart cooperation,” Wang Yi said.
However, Secretary of State Antony Blinken told senators at his confirmation hearing that President Donald Trump was “right” in taking a tougher approach to Beijing.
“I disagree very much with the way that he went about it in a number of areas, but the basic principle was the right one, and I think that’s actually helpful to our foreign policy,” Blinken said.
February 2, 2021
Mr. Jake Sullivan
National Security Advisor
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Northwest
Washington, D.C. 20500
Dear Mr. Sullivan,
As you are undoubtedly aware, our nation’s Information and Communications Technology (ICT) supply chain has been relentlessly and strategically targeted by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) as part of a systematic, multi-decade attempt to erode America’s global dominance. We remain extraordinarily concerned about the CCP’s blatant efforts to weaponize their private sector for intelligence and military purposes, exploit the data of American people and businesses, and manipulate global markets for critical and emerging technologies, all while being less than forthcoming on the international stage.
While several members of the incoming Cabinet and leadership team have nominally addressed some of these issues during confirmation hearings, press briefings, and official statements — we remain troubled that you have not yet provided definitive clarity on how the administration plans on continuing the productive measures from the last four years to protect our homeland from this far-reaching CCP threat. Just days ago, the nominee for Secretary of the Department of Commerce, Governor Gina Raimondo, refused to confirm whether Huawei will remain on the Department of Commerce’s Entity List.
It is imperative that we prevent an authoritarian, communist regime that is actively engaged in genocide and does not share America’s interests from infiltrating and exploiting our nation’s communications and technology backbone. These connected systems, to include 5G networks, will increasingly underpin our way of life for the coming decades and must remain secure. This should not be a controversial proposition.
The House Committee on Homeland Security is committed to standing strong against the CCP’s overreach. We will not be bashful when it comes to being honest with our constituents and the American people about the threat the CCP poses. We are hopeful for a productive partnership with you and the new administration. The stakes are simply too high for rhetoric and soundbites without action.
Please provide us with a briefing on your plan to counter the CCP’s aggression at your earliest convenience.
Michael T. McCaul
Jeff Van Drew
Carlos A. Gimenez