Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chair Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and ranking member Sen. Jim Risch (R-Idaho) on Thursday announced their finished bipartisan proposal to counter China's rising political and financial power.
Why it matters, via Axios' China reporter Bethany Allen-Ebrahimian: This bill marks a culmination of years of growing bipartisan concern, and the rise of an increasingly authoritarian China. If it passes, it will send a strong signal to Beijing that both parties are unified in defending democratic values from authoritarian encroachment.
Details: Under the proposed bill, the U.S. would ...
- send more security assistance to countries in the Indo-Pacific region and offer debt relief to countries requesting forbearance during the coronavirus pandemic;
- impose sanctions in response to human rights abuses in Xinjiang;
- double down on the federal government's effort to fight China's raids of U.S. intellectual property; and
- monitor China's acquirement of ballistic, hypersonic glide, and cruise missiles.
What they're saying: "The United States government must be clear-eyed and sober about Beijing's intentions and actions, and calibrate our policy and strategy accordingly," Menendez said in a statement.
- "I am incredibly proud to announce this unprecedented bipartisan effort to mobilize all U.S. strategic, economic, and diplomatic tools for an Indo-Pacific strategy that will allow our nation to truly confront the challenges China poses to our national and economic security."
What's next: The Senate Foreign Relations Committee will review the bill and vote on April 14, Menendez said.