The People’s Republic of China has engaged in systematic and aggressive influence operations across America which threaten U.S. interests. To counter this activity, action is required at the federal, state, and local levels. The Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) strategy for exploiting subnational governance to advance its objectives is led by its official foreign influence agency, the United Front Work Department (UFWD). The UFWD, through its various front organizations, including the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries, has established an extensive network of associations, sister cities, cultural groups, friendship societies, and business forums in all 50 states.
Issue 1: Protect Against Malign CCP Investment
The CCP can exploit Chinese investments in the U.S. to steal intellectual property and data, hold critical infrastructure at risk, and expand its control of critical supply chains.
Action: Risk-manage CCP-linked investments that threaten state security.
Issue 2: Stop CCP Exploitation of State Funds
Public employee pension systems, state-funded universities, and other state retirement funds hold sizeable Chinese equities and bonds, fueling the CCP’s technology development and boosting the economy and military of an adversary. Chinese companies fail to comply with basic investor protection standards or federal security laws.
Action: Divest state funds from China.
Issue 3: Prohibit Chinese Contracting
Chinese technology (e.g. Huawei) used in U.S. critical infrastructure undermines national security by enabling the CCP to embed backdoors, creating vulnerabilities.
Action: Ban Chinese technology and firms from state procurement processes.
Issue 4: Stop Education Infiltration
The CCP has infiltrated all levels of U.S. academic institutions from K-12 classrooms to the most elite universities. By providing donations, research grants, establishing Confucius Classrooms and Institutes, and through Chinese government-sponsored student associations, the CCP compromises academic freedom, and promotes a pro-CCP narrative in America’s education system.
Action: Stop malign CCP activities in education and enforce transparency for donations and grants.
Issue 5: Prevent Illegal CCP Police Activity and Repression on U.S. Soil
The CCP routinely engages in illegal police operations that predominantly victimize Chinese Americans and Chinese nationals living in the U.S. This undermines American sovereignty and rule of law.
Action: Ensure every state has the tools to investigate and coordinate with the FBI to dismantle CCP police operations including police stations.
Issue 6: Ban Chinese Apps/TikTok
Chinese law requires businesses in the country to provide the government with data or intelligence cooperation upon request, making apps like TikTok a significant threat to data privacy and U.S. national security. In addition, these apps provide the CCP a backdoor to election interference, disinformation campaigns, and other malign intelligence-collection activities. Other popular Chinese apps, including WeChat, Temur, CapCut, and SHEIN, pose similar threats.
Action: Ban dangerous Chinese apps, including from all government devices, and block access to their domains on public networks.
Issue 7: Counter the CCP’s Cultural Influence in Entertainment and Sports
The CCP influences U.S. culture in entertainment and sports by coercing people and studios in Hollywood and the NBA to self-censor and promote pro-CCP narratives.
Action: Require transparency of and investigate any CCP censorship of media and events that receive state tax privileges or other legal advantages.
Issue 8: Prevent Malicious Land Use
The purchase of U.S. farmland and property near critical infrastructure or military bases could enable the CCP to threaten U.S. food security and conduct espionage.
Action: Screen and reject all land purchases from foreign malign actors that could threaten U.S. national security.
Issue 9: Combat Espionage Activities
The CCP operates extensive espionage operations at the state and local levels, threatening the security and prosperity of everyday Americans. The CCP uses seemingly legitimate forums, from business and academia to social and alumni groups, cultural exchanges and sister cities programs, as avenues for intelligence collection.
Action: Educate state and local actors about the espionage tactics deployed by the CCP and restrict or ban the activities of CCP-linked groups that pose espionage risks.
Issue 10: Reform State Lobbying Disclosures
The CCP hires American lobbyists to engage state officials and influencers to promote its interests.
Action: Prohibit lobbyists working for the CCP or their interests from lobbying at the state and local levels.
Issue 11: Stop the Use of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Policies that Empower CCP Manipulation of American Society
ESG policies risk enriching China at America’s expense and place vital energy supply chains at China’s mercy. ESG policies cost Americans their jobs and money.
Action: Discourage ESG compliance and regulations that harm states by passing legislation to protect state pensions and instate economic interests. Visit ESGHurts.com for model legislation. Support efforts by state treasurers and attorneys general to combat ESG.