WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) today warned of the economic and national security threats China poses to the United States. In remarks delivered on the Senate floor, Senator Tuberville stressed the need for greater accountability; increased, targeted defense spending; and a proactive posture toward the malign actions of the Chinese Communist Party.
Excerpts from the Senator’s speech can be found below, and his full remarks can be viewed here.
“But, we face a more serious threat in this nation. An issue larger than left or right. A threat that goes beyond conservative and liberal–China. China seeks to shackle the United States economically, technologically, and militarily. The communist leaders of China are employing every instrument of national power to diminish our standing and influence in the world.”
“China continues to outspend us on National Security. In just the last ten years, China’s defense spending has increased by $200 billion while we, the United States of America, has decreased by $400 billion. And that brings me to a very important point: Senator Schumer needs to bring up the National Defense Authorization Act for a vote on the Senate floor.”
“Every year since 1960, we have passed the National Defense Authorization Act, better known as the NDAA. The NDAA is one of few bills that the House and Senate – Democrats and Republicans – work together on. That’s because our military deserves that. And our national security depends on it. One of the most important items we agreed on in this year’s NDAA was that our military needs more support.”
“In a stunning referendum on the president’s disappointing and dangerous military budget – Democrats and Republicans on the [Senate] Armed Services Committee came together to increase our military’s budget by $25 billion. We cannot ask our military to do more with less. We cannot expect our military to defend [against] new threats from our adversaries, like China, without the resources required to do the job.”
“The best way to ensure our armed services have the resources they need to defend our country against China is to pass this bill. Especially in the light of the news we’ve seen recently about China’s hypersonic missile testing. Earlier this year, as the Senate Armed Services Committee crafted the NDAA, I fought to prioritize robust funding, authorization for high-energy lasers, and hypersonic missile development. This investment accelerates the country’s timeline to a fully-capable hypersonic missile while, at the same time, assisting our missile defense capability with tracking hypersonic, ballistic, and cruise missiles. This is an offensive and defensive approach. China is actively trying to outpace us, and keeping pace is not enough. To do that, we need to have sustained and strategic investments in our military. That is what the NDAA provides – and why we need a vote on the Senate floor. So, what does it say about Leader Schumer’s priorities that passing our military authorization is at the bottom of his list?”
“And when it comes to taking over the economic upper hand: China has no rules – and Chinese companies definitely don’t play by ours. Our country has already seen Chinese companies, backed by the Chinese Communist Party, attempt to invest in and even take over [American] companies. This grave national security threat will only grow if we allow China to invest in our critical industries.”
“One way to do that is to add a permanent agricultural perspective to this committee, which is not on there as we speak. The COVID pandemic showed us just how important it is to have strong supply chains – especially when it comes to our food supply. Every American is supported by a safe and secure food supply – it’s critical to our country’s prosperity. Not everyone thinks about food security in relation to national security – but they are linked.”
“Our food supply must remain secure from foreign governments, like China, that have no business being in the American economy and actively try to harm our country. That’s why I introduced a bill called the Foreign Adversary Risk Management or FARM Act to put more protections in place for America’s agricultural industry. My bill will make sure the agriculture industry has a permanent seat at the table as CFIUS reviews agricultural-related investments…By adding agricultural supply chains as a covered transaction that CFIUS has to review, we can make sure our food supply chains remains strong and free of damaging foreign government interference.”
“Like China’s communist leaders, leftists in this country believe that when it comes to the economy, bureaucrats know best. They think raising the corporate [tax] rate to be higher than Communist China’s will strengthen our economy. Nonsense. That’s like standing in a bucket and trying to lift yourself by the handle.”
“Their way is not the way to combat China – it is the way to become China. We all know China wants to overtake the United States as the world superpower. But what makes the United States a superpower is not just our economic and military might. We are a superpower for what our military is fighting to defend and to protect: our freedoms and our values, and the American spirit of innovation and ingenuity – of hard work and grit. These values pose a direct threat to communist China – they are why China wants to surpass our country as the world’s Number one superpower. We need leadership that protects our national security and our economic security – it’s the only way to combat the aggression that the Biden administration’s weakness has invited.”
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.