WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) joined six other Senators to send a letter to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin pressing the Pentagon to publish the names of Chinese military companies operating directly or indirectly in the United States, as required by federal law.
The letter was co-signed by U.S. Senators Ted Budd (R-NC), Tom Cotton (R-AR), Joni Ernst (R-IA), Rick Scott (R-FL), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), and Deb Fischer (R-NE).
Read the full letter below or here.
We write to express our concerns regarding the Department of Defense’s failure to annually publish the names of “Chinese military companies” operating directly or indirectly in the United States, as required by Section 1260H of the Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act.
Congress passed this provision with bipartisan support in order to highlight and counter the People’s Republic of China’s Military-Civil Fusion strategy, which supports the modernization goals of the People’s Liberation Army. As the phrase “Military-Civil Fusion” implies, the concept is to eliminate barriers between China’s civilian research and commercial sectors, and its military and defense industrial sectors. China’s efforts threaten the trust, transparency, reciprocity, and shared values that underpin international science and technology collaboration and fair global business practices. In a secretive and exploitative manner, China is acquiring the intellectual property, key research, and technological advancements of the world’s citizens, researchers, scholars, and private industry in order to advance its military aims.
To counter that effort, it is imperative that the Department of Defense continues to release the “Chinese military companies” list. The public release of this list ensures that U.S. and international companies are aware of specific Chinese entities that are supporting China’s military ambitions.
We request a briefing on why the Department of Defense failed to produce the “Chinese military companies” list in 2023, as mandated by Section 1260H of the FY2021 NDAA. As part of that briefing, we request an update on the process for determining how the Department of Defense develops, updates, and publishes the list.
Since assuming office in the U.S. Senate in 2021, Senator Tuberville has led and supported numerous efforts to protect American resources, farmland, schools, investments, intellectual property, and national security from the growing threat of Communist China. Senator Tuberville believes the United States must face China’s growing military and non-military threats with clear-eyed resolve as China attempts to overtake the United States as the top global superpower.
Economic Security, Investments, and Intellectual Property
- To curb Chinese influence in the economy, Senator Tuberville introduced legislation to ban members of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) from receiving B-1 and B-2 visas to the United States for vacation and non-official government business.
- The CCP is responsible for trillions of dollars of intellectual property theft each year. To curb growing foreign influence and crime and discourage other Chinese nationals from joining the CCP, the bill cosponsored by Senator Tuberville would bar all 93 million CCP members from entering the United States using nonimmigrant B-1 and B-2 visas.
- Senator Tuberville believes the retirement savings of our military and federal government employees, known as the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP), should not be invested in the economies of our adversaries, such as China.
- Senator Tuberville wrote about this issue in the Wall Street Journal in a column entitled, “I’ll Keep Veterans’ Pensions Safe From Communism” and discussed the issue on Fox Business.
- Senator Tuberville continued the push for accountability from the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board (FRTIB) surrounding the board’s policy on foreign investments.
- Senator Tuberville placed a hold on nominees to the FRTIB until the nominees provided clarification regarding foreign investment policies, which forced the nominees to commit to opposing TSP investment in China.
- Senator Tuberville led the call for an investigation into Webull Financial, LLC and Moomoo, Inc. — two Chinese-owned stock trading apps operating in the United States that are registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FIRA).
- Both apps are widely used by American investors and freely collect and store sensitive information about users, including Social Security numbers, mailing addresses, and sensitive financial account data.
- In May 2023, Senator Tuberville sent a letter to SEC Chair Gary Gensler and FINRA President and CEO Robert Cook calling for oversight of the trading platforms due to the potential CCP access of American user data. In the letter, Senator Tuberville asked for answers to critical questions about the ability of the SEC and FINRA to examine the Chinese companies’ compliance with American laws.
- As a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions committee, Senator Tuberville has taken action to protect American schools from being further infiltrated by the Chinese Communist Party.
- In September, Senator Tuberville joined colleagues to introduce the Safeguarding American Education from Foreign Control Act.
- This bill would tighten the enforcement of rules surrounding foreign donations to higher education institutions and their contracts with foreign entities. This is a direct response to efforts by the Chinese Communist party to exert financial influence over American educational institutions and students.
- In August, Senator Tuberville joined 19 of his Senate colleagues in sending a letter to the Department of Education expressing outrage for allowing the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to infiltrate U.S. classrooms through Confucius programming.
- Confucius programming establishes a partnership between schools, universities, or nonprofits and a Chinese government entity. Expansion of Confucius Classrooms in the United States is a top priority for the Chinese government.
- In February, Senator Tuberville let Troy University know that future funding opportunities would be in jeopardy if they did not end their Confucius Institute program. Coach was pleased when Troy announced they were closing the program.
Farmland, Agriculture, and Energy
- In January, Senator Tuberville led a bipartisan, bicameral coalition of 59 lawmakers in introducing the Foreign Adversary Risk Management (FARM) Act to bolster the U.S. agriculture industry’s role on the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), the governmental body that oversees the vetting process of foreign investment and acquisition of American companies. More information about the FARM Act can be found here.
- In March, Senator Tuberville joined a bipartisan, bicameral group of colleagues to cosponsor the Protecting America’s Agricultural Land from Foreign Harm Act, which would prohibit the sale of U.S. agricultural land to any individual or entity tied to the governments of Iran, North Korea, China or Russia.
- Last year, Senator Tuberville introduced the Securing America’s Land from Foreign Interference Act to prohibit members of the Chinese Communist Party from purchasing land in the United States and set minimum penalties for foreign purchases that fail to comply with federal reporting requirements.
Senator Tommy Tuberville represents Alabama in the United States Senate and is a member of the Senate Armed Services, Agriculture, Veterans’ Affairs, and HELP Committees.