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Republican Senator Tommy Tuberville of Alaska as well as Republican Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas have introduced a new bill against the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
The purpose of the bill is to prevent the CCP from buying land in the U.S.
The bill, called “Securing America’s Land from Foreign Interference Act,” was put together after a 2020 report showing that “foreign persons held an interest in nearly 37.6 million acres of U.S. agricultural land.”
U.S. Department of Agriculture reported that “approximately 14 states have some level of foreign ownership restriction, yet there are no federal restrictions on the amount of private U.S. agricultural land that can be owned.”
Senator Tuberville explained, “We cannot continue giving our top adversary a foot in the door to purchase land in the United States and undermine our national security.”
In addition, the bill also includes penalties for those who violate federal law. Foreign purchases must comply with federal reporting requirements.
More on this story via Townhall:
According to Cotton’s statement, Chinese investments in U.S. agricultural is subject to provide the CCP with leverage over America’s supply chains and give them access to sensitive information critical to the nation’s national security.
“Chinese investments in American farmland put our food security at risk and provide opportunities for Chinese espionage against our military bases and critical infrastructure. Instead of allowing these purchases, the U.S. government must bar the Communist Party from purchasing our land,” Cotton said.
According to reports from the USDA, Chinese investors’ holdings of U.S. agricultural land spiked from 13,720 acres in 2010 to 352,140 acres in 2020.
“Chinese investors’ holdings of U.S. agricultural land surged from 13,720 acres in 2010 to 352,140 acres in 2020,” Cotton’s statement claims.
Republicans have sounded alarms on the issues, saying that Chinese land purchases near U.S. military installations should raise concerns because of possible intelligence gathering.