Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.), member of the Armed Services Committee, on Thursday, Feb. 18, introduced five pieces of legislation to counter the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), which he said is the U.S.’s foremost enemy.
“The greatest threat to American freedom and justice is the Chinese Communist Party, which is why I’m proud to advance these five pieces of legislation to protect America’s interests from Beijing,” said Banks, who is also the chairman of the Republican Study Committee.
“China is our foremost military adversary, but it also seeks to infiltrate our economy, universities, digital infrastructure, and intelligence agencies,” he said, adding, “Congress should be focused on safeguarding each of these American institutions from the Chinese regime.”
The #CCP is our foremost military adversary, but it also seeks to infiltrate our economy, universities, digital infrastructure and intelligence agencies.
Today I intro’d 5 bills to safeguard each of these institutions from the Chinese Communist regime.https://t.co/1QY36dMYvu
— Jim Banks (@RepJimBanks) February 18, 2021
The first bill is Stop Funding the PLA Act, which prevents U.S. investments from flowing to China’s military industrial base. The act would require a Treasury Department-led effort to produce a list of PLA-linked companies in which U.S. individuals, American entities, companies, banks, and financial institutions cannot invest.
The second bill is Placing restrictions on acquisitions by the People’s Republic of China. The bill would empower the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS)—the body responsible for reviewing national security implications of foreign investments in U.S. companies or operations—to prevent predatory investments of American companies by the CCP.
The third is Online Consumer Protection Act, which would prohibit the download of an application or software from a country that poses a national security risk to the United States without first acknowledging a warning about the application or software’s source nation.
The fourth is Safe Career Transitions for Intelligence and National Security Professionals Act. The legislation would restrict the ability of national security professionals to work for certain foreign-government-backed organizations for five years after a position, which required a security clearance.
The fifth is Protect Our Universities Act, which would prevent foreign espionage against the U.S.’s most sensitive academic research by requiring the Department of Education to create and lead an interagency task force and requires students from adversarial nations to apply for a waiver granted by the director of National Intelligence (DNI) to participate in sensitive research projects funded by the Department of Defense, Intelligence Community, and Department of Energy.
These bills are among a flurry of legislation that Banks and other Republican Study Committee members have launched this week to push back against the CCP and secure America from foreign threats.
A number of officials under former President Donald Trump’s administration rated the CCP as the U.S.’s No. 1 security threat.