Thursday, July 18, 2024

Taxpayer transparency legislation would expose funds going to China

Homeland Security Chair Mark Green, R-Tenn., is introducing legislation that would require the federal government to show how much federal money is going to China.

The bill would mandate that the federal government create a comprehensive annual report detailing exactly how much taxpayer money is going to Chinese groups

In China, businesses and nonprofits are intertwined with the government in a way that is less common in the U.S., which means that cooperating with Chinese entity can be handing money, intellectual property and more directly to the Chinese Communist Party.

“Xi Jinping wants to see a weakened United States,” Green told The Center Square. “Given Communist China’s track record, there must be transparency. My bill requires a detailed annual report on federal funds sent to Chinese entities and institutions.

“The threats to our homeland from the Chinese Communist Party cannot be overstated,” he added.

Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, conducted an analysis with the Congressional Research Service and Open the Books to determine just how much U.S. funding goes to China,

That analysis, released over the summer, found that about $490 million went to Chinese organizations via federal grants since 2017.

Green’s bill comes as China’s leader, Xi Xinping, meets with President Joe Biden in California this week.

National security experts say China, which is responsible for manufacturing much of the fentanyl that has killed tens of thousands of Americans, could invade Taiwan at any time.

“Taxpayers deserve a detailed look at funds that currently go to entities in China. From stealing American intellectual property, setting up ‘police stations’ to monitor Chinese residents living in the U.S., and scheming to devalue the dollar, this regime is a threat to our way of life and our national security,” Green said in a statement. “My bill mandates one important thing: transparency.”

The bill comes after a hearing from The Homeland Security Committee, which Green chairs, on Wednesday. During that hearing, national security experts raised the threat of China as a top national security concern.

Those concerns include cyber attacks. FBI Director Christopher Wray testified at the hearing that China has used cyber attacks, corrupt business practices, and more to gather intelligence and steal American research.

“There is nothing traditional about the scale of their theft,” Wray said. “It is unprecedented. American workers and companies are facing a greater, more complex danger than they have dealt with before. Stolen innovation means stolen jobs, stolen opportunities for American workers, and stolen national power.”