(FreedomBeacon.com)- It isn’t just members of Congress who are worried about China; it’s other leaders of private groups.
This week, Scott Paul testified before the House Select Committee on China, saying that he believes Congress should suspend the country’s current free trade status that it has with China. Paul testified on behalf of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, which he says has been hurt by this status it continues to give the Communist country.
Back in 2001, the United States backed China entering the World Trade Organization. Under then-President George W. Bush, China was then awarded “permanent normal trade relations status” with the U.S. following Congress’ approval.
In his testimony Tuesday, Paul said this status should be revoked or suspended.
Those words are in line with new legislation that has been filed by Republican Senators J.D. Vance of Ohio, Rick Scott of Florida, Ted Budd of North Carolina and Tom Cotton of Arkansas.
Their bill, the China Trade Relations Act, would do exactly what Paul is suggesting. Each presidential administration would have the option, if the bill were passed, to decide whether to authorize a free trade status to China. The current president would ultimately have the discretion to make that decision based on how the relationship between China and the U.S. is at that time.
The bill is currently still in front of the Senate Finance Committee. A similar bill hasn’t been put forth in the House, yet, where Republicans hold a slight majority. Democrats hold the majority in the Senate, which means it’s unlikely that the Republicans’ bill will pass through.
During his testimony, Paul said that American companies have, for the last few decades, made huge investments over in China without receiving any pushback from the American government. He added that this free trade status for China – which quite often the federal government subsidizes – has ultimately gutted America’s middle class and working communities.
As he commented:
“Bringing China into the world trading system in 2000 seemed like a slam dunk but instead became a spectacular failure of conventional wisdom and elite opinion.
“Governors sought Chinese firms for projects that cost American jobs: The San Francisco Bay Bridge, rail cars for Boston, Chicago, and other cities; even the Alexander Hamilton bridge in New York City, named for the father of American manufacturing policy.”
Paul isn’t alone in his opinion, either.
Katherine Tai, who serves as the U.S. trade representative, has said multiple times that America relies too much on China for critical technology, products and materials. Executives have often complained regarding tariffs being placed on China, but Tai said the “fundamental problem” is actually that the U.S. isn’t currently capable of manufacturing what are the basic necessities the country needs.
Studies have also shown that tariffs would result in a big boon for bringing more jobs back to American soil while also increasing wages at the same time.