WASHINGTON – The U.S. Senate recently passed a bipartisan bill, which Senator Maggie Hassan joined in introducing, that would close a loophole that the Chinese Communist Party frequently exploits to conceal its role in lobbying efforts. The bill was introduced by U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA).
"As countries like China and Russia seek to exploit loopholes to influence our democracy, increasing transparency around foreign lobbying activities is critical to our national security," said Senator Hassan. "It's important that the Senate passed our bipartisan bill, which will crack down on loopholes in lobbying disclosure laws that for too long have allowed bad actors to sneak through our system."
“The Chinese Communist Party has exploited loopholes in lobbying disclosure laws to mask their involvement in lobbying campaigns that are pushing their agenda and influencing U.S. policy. This bill shines a light on those types of secret schemes so we can make more informed decisions when crafting policy. I’m grateful to have bipartisan support for this measure,” Senator Grassley said.
The Disclosing Foreign Influence in Lobbying Act makes clear that foreign governments and political parties that participate in the planning, supervision, direction or control of a lobbying effort must disclose their activity, regardless of any financial contribution to the lobbying effort. This would prevent the Chinese Communist Party from circumventing federal lobbying laws by using registered, closely-connected organizations and businesses as proxies to push their interests when lobbying the U.S. government.
Senator Hassan is working across the aisle to address the national security and economic threat posed by the Chinese government, and this past summer she worked with her colleagues to pass into law the bipartisan CHIPS and Science Act, which included $1.5 billion to strengthen telecommunication technology research and development here at home, so we can install our own technology instead of using Chinese technology in telecommunications networks. The President also previously signed into law the Secure Equipment Act of 2021, a bipartisan bill cosponsored by Senator Hassan, which directs the FCC to close a loophole to better prevent telecommunications equipment manufactured and sold by companies that pose a national security threat from being deployed in the United States.