Why Mitt Romney’s call for economic boycott of China Olympics comes as no surprise
Dennis Romboy, 15 March 2021
SALT LAKE CITY — Sen. Mitt Romney’s call for an economic and diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Olympics in Beijing isn’t surprising given his political stances on China.
In his first speech on the Senate floor after taking office in 2019, the Utah Republican shifted his focus from Russia to China as America’s greatest geopolitical adversary. While running for president in 2012, he argued that Russia presented the biggest threat to the United States.
Romney said China’s economic strength and large population enable a military power that “could eclipse our own.”
“It is possible that freedom itself would be in jeopardy,” he warned. “If we fail to act now, that possibility may become reality.”
In his first two years in the Senate, Romney filed legislation to combat China’s economic aggression, condemned the Chinese Communist Party and sought sanctions over abuses of ethnic minorities. He pushed for a National Security Council task force to counter the Chinese government’s “sinister propaganda” about the origins of the coronavirus
Just last week, Romney and seven GOP colleagues reintroduced the Strengthening Trade, Regional Alliances, Technology and Economic and Geopolitical Initiatives Concerning China Act to advance a comprehensive strategy for U.S. competition with China.
“We must take decisive action now to confront China’s growing aggression, which includes linking arms with our friends and allies to dissuade the Chinese Communist Party from its predatory policies and demand that China abide by the norms and rules which the rest of us follow,” he said.
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee, of which Romney is a member, will hold a hearing on the issue this week.
Romney has accused China of unfair trade practices, stealing American jobs, currency manipulation and intellectual property theft.
“I think we have to hold China’s feet to the fire,” he said in 2019.
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