House GOP leaders are slamming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's 2,900-page China competition bill, arguing that its climate-related funding is misguided and fails to sufficiently counter Chinese Communist Party "aggression."
The Senate version of the bill passed back in June 2021 with 18 Republican votes.
Pelosi's version includes billions in climate-related funding including an $8 billion contribution to the United Nations' Green Climate Fund. According to Roll Call, the U.S. contribution to the fund was $625 million in fiscal 2021 and the House Appropriations Committee proposed increasing it to $1.6 billion for the fiscal 2022 budget.
Texas Rep. Mike McCaul, the top Republican on the House Foreign Relations Committee, said Pelosi and other House Democratic leaders have "decided to torpedo the chance of a bipartisan, bicameral bill to confront the generational threat posed by the Chinese Communist Party."
Pelosi's decision to include language of the immigration-related EAGLE Act in the America COMPETES Act "proves Democrat leaders are not serious about confronting the CCP," he also said.
"The EAGLE Act authorizes more taxpayer money to pour into an unaccountable UN climate slush fund than it does to counter the CCP. It reflects virtually no Republican input, and – to be frank – will be dead on arrival in the U.S. Senate."
The House bill would have to be melded with the previously passed Senate bill in a way that both chambers could pass to get the measure to President Biden's desk to be signed into law.
“I would strongly urge Speaker Pelosi and other House Democrats to scrap their weak, partisan bill and work with Republicans on comprehensive legislation that will actually counter CCP aggression," McCaul also said.
House Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy said that House Republicans won’t back Pelosi's bill.
"By proposing a toothless bill that does more to appease their corporate allies than it does to strengthen America’s security," he said. "It wastes billions of dollars on unrelated matters and includes no measures to make China pay for the chaos they created. The COMPETES Act isn’t serious legislation – it is a façade to cover up the Democrats’ reluctance to actually do anything to hold China accountable."
Republican Study Committee Chairman Rep. Jim Banks also criticized the funding in the proposed bill for not doing enough to improve national security.
"This is why conservatives wrote our own China bill last summer that ... includes tough measures like sanctions that would limit the Chinese Communist Party’s ability to subvert our nation’s institutions and steal our intellectual property," the Indiana lawmaker said. "If Congress really wanted to confront the China threat, we’d pass the RSC’s Countering Communist China Act.”
The House bill maintains the $52 billion in funding for computer chip manufacturing that's included in the Senate version that passed last June.
Virginia Democratic Sen. Mark Warner, a co-sponsor of the bill, said passage of the chip funding would help lower the price of automobiles, which have been rising amid a shortage of chips.