published : 2023-10-28

As a Democrat and a Republican, we are united in warning China's Xi on fentanyl, fair trade

We made it clear to Xi that Americans must be given a fair chance to succeed in China (or the task to create one if not provided)

An image of the U.S. congressional delegation meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping, emphasizing the bipartisan unity in addressing China's challenges. (Taken with Nikon D850)

It’s not difficult for Republicans and Democrats to find common ground on China.

Congress is united in working to keep our economy strong and Americans safe against the geopolitical threat the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) poses.

We recently joined a congressional delegation trip to China to deliver that message to President Xi Jinping in person.

For too long, China has built up its military, undermined the foundations of many of our democratic allies, facilitated the flow of drugs into the U.S., and continued to double down on unfair trade practices to hurt American businesses.

We embarked on this trip, in part, to help manage our relationship with China and to make clear that when it comes to out-competing China, standing up for our country’s values, and maintaining our military’s cutting edge, Republicans and Democrats are united.

When American innovators, entrepreneurs and workers are given a fair chance to succeed, our economy is second to none.

In China, we met with American business leaders who stressed the importance of leveling the playing field for U.S. companies who do business in China.

Unfortunately, as we know, China engages in unfair and anticompetitive trade practices that target and punish American businesses.

A photo of American business leaders discussing the importance of fair trade and leveling the playing field for U.S. companies in China during the delegation trip. (Taken with Canon EOS R)

We made clear to Xi that we will not stand for these unfair tactics.

And now that we’re home, we will keep pushing for our bipartisan bill, the Strengthen American Competitiveness Against Harmful Subsidies Act, to ensure that our country is proactively monitoring and addressing China’s use of industrial subsidies and rampant pollution, which undercut U.S. competitiveness.

Maintaining our country’s economic edge is not only vital for American businesses, it is also in our national security interest.

We were proud to help develop and pass the bipartisan CHIPS and Science Act, which kick-started the production of more semiconductors and other critical technologies — including defense technologies — here in America.

The CCP currently controls over 60% of the world’s semiconductor production.

Securing semiconductor supply chains outside the CCP’s reach is vital to our national security and creates American jobs.

The CCP is also responsible for the overwhelming majority of the world’s fentanyl precursor production, which has fueled the fentanyl crisis in the U.S.

We pressed Xi and CCP leaders to crack down on the illicit trafficking of these precursor chemicals.

A striking image capturing the significant control the CCP holds over the world's semiconductor production, showcasing the need for securing semiconductor supply chains outside their reach. (Taken with Sony Alpha a7R IV)

While Xi said he was open to working on this, he needs to actually follow through with action.

We must do everything we can to cut these deadly drugs off right at the source.

Lastly, the events of recent weeks have reminded us that there is no replacement for strong American leadership.

The CCP has demonstrated a willingness not only to continue to deny freedoms in its own country but also to find common cause with autocracies around the world.

As Russian President Vladimir Putin continues to wage war against Ukraine, as Iran funds terrorism and as Hamas launches horrific attacks on our ally Israel, the CCP is watching to see if Americans are still willing to oppose evil, stand by our allies and defend democracy.

By building on the bipartisan progress that we have made on this trip, we have an opportunity to show that the American people will not waver in our determination to defend freedom and outcompete China.

We can show the world that even though the American people do not always agree on everything, we will always remain united when confronting adversaries like China.