WASHINGTON—As President Biden devotes himself to dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, Republicans are striving to elevate China policy as a top issue, pressuring him to take an aggressive stance as Americans’ opinion toward the global rival grows more negative.
Republicans positioning themselves as leading critics of Mr. Biden, chiefly those seen as considering a 2024 presidential run, have buffeted his nominees with questions about how they would deal with China. GOP lawmakers are proposing legislation to limit visas given to Chinese nationals and to crack down on American universities’ relationships with China. Some Republicans want the president to boycott the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing.
The goal, lawmakers and party strategists say, is to maintain pressure on Mr. Biden to confront China—and to make his policies a top issue for voters ahead of the 2022 midterm elections and the presidential race two years later.
“China poses the single greatest geopolitical threat to our nation over the next century,” said Sen. Ted Cruz (R., Texas), who ran for president in 2016 and who has tangled with several of Mr. Biden’s nominees. He tried to block the confirmation of Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo after she initially stopped short of promising to maintain the Republican Trump administration’s blacklisting of Huawei Technologies Co. Ms. Raimondo later called telecommunications equipment made by “untrusted vendors” a threat to the U.S.
Mr. Cruz said Mr. Biden’s choices for administration positions “raise serious questions as to whether this administration understands the threat.” He and other GOP lawmakers sharply questioned Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the now-confirmed United Nations ambassador, over past comments on China.
Source: WSJ – US News