Close this content Fox News Potential 2024 GOP candidates warn US influencers taking money from China: You're 'condoning' genocide
Several potential 2024 GOP presidential candidates warned U.S. influencers taking money from China to promote the Beijing Olympics that they are “condoning” genocide.
Former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, as well as Republican Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Tom Cotton of Arkansas, cautioned social media stars against taking the People’s Republic of China’s paycheck to promote the diplomatically boycotted 2022 Winter Olympics in China.
Haley said that Americans should make note of the people who do take the communist nation’s money to promote the games and decried anyone taking money from China as ignoring the ongoing genocide against Uyghur Muslims in the country.
“Americans should take the names of any celebrity or influencer being paid by the Chinese government to promote the Olympics,” Haley told Fox News in a Thursday statement.
“To put it plainly, anyone who’s receiving a paycheck from President Xi is turning a blind eye to human rights and condoning the genocide of millions of Uyghurs,” she continued.
Cruz told Fox News that the world is paying attention to the atrocities in Xinjiang, regardless of the stream of propaganda coming out of Beijing.
“No amount of propaganda on behalf of the Chinese Communist Party will distract from the fact the CCP is engaged in an ongoing genocide and is guilty of a multitude of human rights abuses,” Cruz said in a statement.
The Republicans’ comments came after a report from the Washington Free Beacon earlier this week about the communist government of China’s plan to pay influencers to promote the Olympic Games from which the U.S., Australia and Canada have pulled their diplomatic delegations.
The report cited disclosures that were filed with the Justice Department under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) showing that the Chinese consulate in New York City paid a New Jersey-based public relations firm $300,000 to hire popular Instagram, TikTok and Twitch users to promote the Olympics and China-U.S. relations.
Cotton told Fox News that he is not surprised by the Chinese Communist Party’s plan to pay off online celebrities and advised those who take the money to read up on the Foreign Agents Registration Act.
“The Chinese Communist Party regularly infiltrates American universities and corporations—it’s no surprise that they’re attempting to bribe ‘influencers’ to spread propaganda,” Cotton told Fox News in a Thursday email. “I would encourage any influencer cozying up to the CCP to familiarize themselves with the Foreign Agents Registration Act.”
Republicans have argued that the Biden administration’s diplomatic boycott of the Winter Olympics does not go far enough, with Sen. Bill Hagerty, R-Tenn., saying the games should be pulled from China entirely.
“What President Biden should do is insist that the International Olympic Committee move the Olympics from Beijing. The United States should lead the world in protecting not only our own athletes, but all athletes from the malign behavior of the Chinese Communist Party as evidenced by the recent disappearance of Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai,” Hagerty said earlier this month.
Although three years out, Cotton, Cruz and Haley have all been floated as potential challengers to President Biden for the White House.