Thirteen Republican lawmakers have been named to the new House Select Committee on the Strategic Competition between the United States and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) announced the postings on Jan. 24, saying that the committee would “stay laser-focused on getting ahead of our national threats.”
Rep. Mike Gallagher (Wis.), who will chair the select committee, said that the roster of GOP members would offer the bipartisan effort a unique combination of backgrounds and skills with which to curb the malign influence of China’s communist regime.
“The Select Committee on the CCP will require the best and the brightest our nation has to offer, and the team Speaker McCarthy has assembled fits the bill,” Gallagher said in an email to The Epoch Times.
“My colleagues chosen to serve on the Select Committee come from a wide range of committees and backgrounds and will use their unique expertise to expose the CCP’s strategy to undermine American leadership.”
Other Republicans named to the select committee include Reps. Jim Banks (Ind.), Andy Barr (Ky.), Neal Dunn (Fla.), Carlos Gimenez (Fla.), Ashley Hinson (Iowa), Dusty Johnson (S.D.), Darin LaHood (Ill.), Blaine Luetkemeyer (Mo.), John Moolenaar (Mich.), Dan Newhouse (Wash.), Michelle Steel (Calif.), and Rob Wittman (Va.).
Democratic members of the committee have not yet been named. With up to seven seats, the Democratic members are expected to help round out the effort’s bipartisan commitment to defending the national interest.
“I’m excited to welcome this serious group of members to the Select Committee, and similarly look forward to working with our Democratic colleagues on this important mission,” Gallagher said.
The select committee was first announced in December and created on Jan. 10 by a bipartisan vote of 365-65. The committee does not have legislative jurisdiction but seeks to investigate the CCP’s malign influence and will recommend policies to Congress to counter such influence.
The move to establish the committee follows a flurry of reports from the Pentagon and Congressional advisory bodies that assert the CCP is seeking to undermine and ultimately displace the United States as leader of the international order.
“It’s a comprehensive problem, and it’s going to require a comprehensive set of policy changes to prevail in this generational competition with the Chinese Communist Party,” said committee member Andy Barr during a previous interview with NTD, a sister media outlet of The Epoch Times.
“The threat is real in both the economic and the military space, so we need a multidisciplinary and cross-jurisdictional select committee that brings to bear the expertise from across the Congress on both sides of the aisle.”
The creation of the select committee was lauded by Republicans and Democrats alike, though members of each party had their own reasons for supporting the committee’s establishment.
To that end, Gallagher has already committed the select committee to addressing some items related to Chinese communist influence in the United States.
Gallagher said that the select committee would call on executives from both Disney and the NBA to explain their relationships with the CCP following numerous high-profile incidents in which the companies appeared to censor Americans under the influence of the regime.
For Barr’s part, preventing the illicit flow of American intellectual property to the CCP regime was the foremost concern.
“The strategic competition between the United States and the Chinese Communist Party is the most critical international challenge of our generation,” Barr said in a Jan. 24 statement.
“I will work to stop the CCP’s theft of intellectual property and forced transfer of technology, implement greater U.S. safeguards to block malign CCP foreign investment in the United States, and protect American investors from unwittingly financing CCP military, surveillance, and technology companies that threaten our national security.”
Other lawmakers, including California’s Michelle Steel, said that the CCP needed to be held accountable for its continued human rights violations in Xinjiang and elsewhere.
“I am honored to join the China Select Committee to continue my fight to hold the CCP accountable for their horrific violations of human rights, their theft of U.S. intellectual property, to secure U.S. supply chains, and strengthen U.S. trade competitiveness,” Steel said in a Tuesday statement.
“We can no longer stand by and allow the CCP to grow in influence and hostility towards free and sovereign nations around the world. I am eager to get to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to ensure the safety of the U.S. and all freedom loving people in the face of CCP aggression.”
The Democrats are expected to release their list of proposed members for the select committee sometime in the next week.