WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Rick Scott led the introduction of the Countering Corrupt Political Influence Act (CCP Influence Act) to increase transparency and reporting requirements of Chinese Communist Party officials in the U.S. conducting government business. The CCP Influence Act would build upon a Trump administration policy to require the State Department to mandate that Chinese foreign missions, including its embassy and various consulates around the United States, notify the Department of State in advance of all official meetings with state officials, official meetings with local and municipal officials, official visits to educational institutions, and official visits to research institutions.
The bill also applies to foreign missions in the U.S. from other countries of concern, including Russia, Iran, North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua and Afghanistan, while under the control of the Taliban. Additionally, this bill would require a monthly report of the notification logs from the State Department to the President, Senate Homeland Security Committee and Senate Foreign Relations Committee to ensure transparency when foreign governments are conducting business domestically.
Senators Ted Cruz, Katie Britt, Todd Young and John Cornyn are cosponsors of this legislation.
Senator Rick Scott said, “For too long, the U.S. has allowed our adversaries like Communist China to operate and benefit from a complete lack of transparency when conducting business on U.S. soil. As individuals and entities tied to the evil government of Communist China continue to buy American farmland, infiltrate our universities and attempt to persuade the decisions of local and state governments, we must take action to protect U.S. interests. Today, I am demanding more transparency. When our diplomats are abroad, we fully expect them to help improve relations in the country they are assigned – that’s their job. It is unacceptable that CCP diplomats stationed in the United States are able to take full advantage of our open society to meet with institutions whenever they choose, yet the CCP doesn’t reciprocate. That needs to change. Until the CCP provides equal treatment of our diplomats, I am urging more transparency in the actions of the CCP in America. That is why I am introducing the CCP Influence Act, and I urge my colleagues to pass this important bill with critical national security implications.”
Senator Ted Cruz said, “China poses the most significant long-term threat to the national security of the United States. The CCP and other foreign adversaries target American educational institutions for infiltration and influence operations. The United States has inadequate transparency into these activities, and it is critical for Congress to act in order to counter these efforts.”
Senator Todd Young said, “Chinese diplomats in the U.S. have access to a wide range of Americans and American institutions, but the Chinese Communist Party limits both the movements and access of U.S. diplomats who are trying to do their jobs in China. This double standard can no longer be accepted. Our bill responds to this imbalance of policy by requiring diplomats to report meetings with certain U.S. entities and individuals to the State Department.”
Senator John Cornyn said, “To effectively counter growing threats from the CCP, we must know how, when, and with whom Chinese diplomats engage on American soil. This legislation would require adversaries like China to disclose their diplomatic activity to the State Department, and I’m glad to support it.”
Read more in the Washington Examiner HERE.