Johnson, GOP colleagues propose sweeping bill to counter China’s abuses

U.S. Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-SD) joined more than 30 Republican colleagues to unveil comprehensive legislation that would counter the malign influence and theft perpetuated by the People’s Republic of China and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). 

The Countering Communist China Act, H.R. 4792, is comprised of more than 100 individual bills that would target China’s censorship, investigate the CCP’s role in the COVID-19 pandemic, address national security and medical supply chain concerns, and highlight China’s human rights abuses, among other provisions, according to a bill summary provided by Rep. Johnson’s office.

“It has become quite clear that the CCP is developing into the single greatest geopolitical threat the United States will face in the 21st century,” Rep. Johnson said. “We must be ready to combat malign Chinese behavior from a multifaceted approach which is what the Countering Communist China Act sets out to do.”

Rep. Johnson is one of 33 original cosponsors of the almost 300-page H.R. 4792, which is sponsored by Republican Study Committee Chairman Jim Banks (R-IN) and has been referred for consideration to 14 different committees in the U.S. House of Representatives.

H.R. 4792 includes one of Rep. Johnson’s bills, which would target China’s intellectual property abuses by amending the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) to exempt firms owned by China from the sovereign immunity defense to lawsuits brought in U.S. courts, according to the congressman’s staff. 

If enacted, H.R. 4792 also would ban the United Front Work Department — China’s political operations arm — from accessing U.S. financial institutions; prohibit universities receiving grant money from the National Science Foundation to work with entities having ties to the CCP; require a determination into whether China’s negligence and coverup of the COVID-19 virus would meet the criteria of negligently using a biological weapon; and create a new Select Committee within Congress to investigate the COVID-19 coverup, among other provisions, according to the bill summary.

“The Democrats’ China-spending bills fall short, so that’s why House conservatives are introducing our own China bill as a benchmark for how Congress should address the China threat,” said Rep. Banks. “Their bill places a burden on taxpayers and lets China off easy, but our bill protects taxpayers and holds the Chinese Communist Party accountable.”