U.S. Senator Todd Young (R-Ind.) responded to reports that the Chinese Communist Party is lobbying against his bill to invest in frontier technologies that will help the United States outcompete China. According to a Reuters report, the Chinese Embassy in Washington is pressuring American business leaders to oppose Senator Young’s United States Innovation and Competitiveness Act, also known as the Endless Frontier Act.
The report says the Embassy is threatening businesses by telling them they will lose market share in China if the bill becomes law.
“Xi Jinping does not want this bill to become law,” said Senator Young. “He is scared – rightfully so – that the U.S. will once again surge ahead when USICA becomes law. The Chinese Communist Party knows that when we invest in American ingenuity, there is no nation in the world that can out-innovate the United States.”
The Senate passed USICA in June with an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 68-32. Among other provisions, the bill would invest $29 billion over the next five years through the National Science Foundation in emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, quantum computing, and more. The legislation also includes critical funding for the CHIPS Act to address the worsening semiconductor shortage.
According to the Reuters report, the letters sent from the Chinese Embassy encourage the businesses to lobby on the country’s behalf against the bill.
“We sincerely hope you … will play a positive role in urging members of Congress to abandon the zero-sum mindset and ideological prejudice, stop touting negative China-related bills, delete negative provisions, so as to create favorable conditions for bilateral economic and trade cooperation before it is too late,” the letters said.
Senator Young said the threats will only help to ensure the bill becomes law.
“Absent from these letters are any reasons why USICA will be bad for America – only bad for the Chinese Community Party. Passage of this bipartisan legislation will create high-paying jobs for Americans, supercharge our nation’s military and technological capabilities, and ensure the Chinese Communist Party’s illiberal sphere of influence does not continue to grow unchecked.”
USICA could be added as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act as early as this week.