Biden commerce secretary nominee won’t commit to keeping Huawei on US blacklist

Posted 35 days ago


President Biden’s nominee to lead the Commerce Department would not commit to keeping Huawei on the U. S. entities blacklist after the Trump administration deemed the Chinese telecom company a national security threat and sought to limit its sway worldwide and its access to U.S. markets.

Gina Raimondo, the Democratic governor of Rhode Island, often took a strong rhetorical stance on China throughout her Tuesday confirmation hearing before the Senate Commerce Committee, but she declined to promise that Huawei would remain on the Commerce Department’s “entities list” for companies deemed to be national security threats.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki emphasized Monday that “strategic patience” in the Biden administration’s interagency review process and its outreach to Republicans, Democrats, and global allies about its China strategy. Former Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe argued on Monday that the U. S. stance toward China needed action, not patience. Raimondo repeatedly emphasized the Biden administration was conducting a broad review on how to approach China.

Sen. Ted Cruz noted a number of Chinese companies, including Huawei, had been added to the Bureau of Industry and Security’s entities list for their role in the Chinese Communist Party’s surveillance of its Uighur Muslim population.

Trump Secretary of State Mike Pompeo declared the Chinese government’s abuses a genocide, and Biden agrees. The Texas Republican asked Raimondo if she would commit to keeping those companies on the blacklist, and she replied only that “I will commit to working with you on that, and I certainly agree with you that the entities list is a powerful tool in the commerce secretary’s tool kit to shore up American national security.”

When pressed about Huawei, she said, “I will review the policy, consult with you, consult with industry, consult with our allies, and make an assessment as to what’s best for American national and economic security.”

“Well, I will say that there is chatter in Washington that the Biden administration is contemplating going easy on China and removing companies from the entities list — I certainly hope that does not happen, because I think that would be profoundly contrary to the national security interest of the United States,” Cruz replied.

Republican Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska was even more blunt, releasing a statement saying, "This is ridiculous: Huawei didn’t change because America has a new President. H... (Read more)