Rubio Chimes In On Recent Ban On Chinese Imports

This past Sunday in an appearance on the CBS show “Face the Nation,” Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) spoke with host Margaret Brennan in order to talk about the tensions between Ukraine and Russia, along with the Chinese threat, and various other topics.

After highlighting that the “mostly Muslim minority” prisoners being held in the detainment camps out in communist China are being tormented and subject to rape, torture, forced abortions, and labor, Brennan questioned Rubio about the power of the United States to “restrict imports made by forced labor.”

“But is it really possible to clean up the supply chain because China is such an economic behemoth here?” questioned Brenna.

In response, Rubio stated by making note that the U.S. must become take steps to be more self-reliant when it comes to manufacturing and goods, as such things can be interrupted by natural things or deliberately as a way of interference.

He went on to bring up the new slave labor bill that had been passed:

We passed a bill that says if something is made in a factory in that part of China, we are going to presume it’s made by slave labor and not allow it into the country unless companies can prove that that’s not the case.

Back on the 23rd of December, Old Uncle Joe put the pen to the “Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act” to sign it into law. The original bill was put forth by Rubio and Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR).

Brennan then put forth a question about which companies have allegedly benefitted from the use of labor out of Xinjiang, and Rubio highlighted Nike “and others that have definitely benefited from the supply chain that’s located in that part of the world.”

“And so we saw the lobbying efforts of Apple, of Nike and others … arguing that this would raise the costs for consumers,” stated Rubio. “But ultimately, it’s slave labor, and it’s a horrific genocide.”

When Brennan spoke up about Tesla opening up a new showroom in Xinjiang, Rubio answered back by stating that he understood the motive in regard to profit, “but our agenda has to be the national interest of the United States, not to mention what’s right or wrong in the world.”

TRANSCRIPT:

BRENNAN: Well, and as I mentioned, this alliance between Russia and China seems to be building. On China itself, more than one million mostly Muslim minorities are in detention camps in China. According to the State Department, they’re subject to forced sterilization, abortions, rape, torture, forced labor, restrictions on prayer, restrictions on movement. I know you’ve been working to try to restrict imports made by forced labor inside these camps. But is it really possible to clean up the supply chain because China is such an economic behemoth here?

RUBIO: Well, a couple of things that we need to do, the first is, we need to do this no matter what, because this country has to be a country that makes things again. If we’ve learned anything over the last couple of years [it’s] that you have to have a manufacturing and industrial capability, and you can’t be dependent on foreign supply chains entirely, especially those located in a place like China because of a pandemic, a war, or out of leverage against us. You could be cut off and create an economic crisis. But the second is, we’ve passed that bill. We passed a bill that says if something is made in a factory in that part of China, we are going to presume it’s made by slave labor and not allow it into the country unless companies can prove that that’s not the case…

BRENNAN: Which companies are the worst abusers on this front?

RUBIO: I think there are many American companies like Nike and others that have definitely benefited from the supply chain that’s located in that part of the world. And the list could be even more extensive than that because there are people that are buying from subcontractors. Many of them know they’re sourcing material from that area, but they have continued or continue to allow it to happen. And so we saw the lobbying efforts of Apple, of Nike and others … arguing that this would raise the costs for consumers. But ultimately, it’s slave labor.

BRENNAN: Yeah.

RUBIO: And it’s a horrific genocide.

BRENNAN: Well, and Tesla just opened a showroom in the province where these camps are located. I mean, American businesses still seem to be more than willing to try to tap the Chinese market.

RUBIO: Well, it’s one of the largest markets, the second largest market in the world, and in some industries, the largest. I understand the profit motive behind it. And that’s fine. But I understand that with their view of it, that’s their agenda. But our agenda has to be the national interest of the United States, not to mention what’s right or wrong in the world. And ultimately, it’s important for policy leaders to push back and say, look, we want American companies to be prosperous and do well, but not in ways that undermine American national security interests, which in the case of China, they are.

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