Tom Cotton July 21, 2020: Senator Cotton Speaks on the Senate Floor
This technology, brilliant american entrepreneurs and engineers kick started the digital revolution that shaped the modern world that was then today. Sadly, most of my conductors are not made in the usa we’ve learned during this pandemic. How dangerous it is to rely on distant factories and overstretched supply chains that can be compromised by emergencies or enemies. Well, almost three quarters of the world’s capacity to make computer chips is located in just a handful of countries in east asia, closer to communist china than our shores and all within range of the missiles of the people’s liberation army. China is investing huge sums, possibly 150 billion dollars in its semiconductor industry, and this investment is paying off for the first time. Ever last year, china surpassed the united states in its capacity for manufacturing, advanced ships. China is projected to surpass japan and south korea in the next two years, which would put it behind only taiwan, an island just 80 miles on its shore, which i must remind you, the pla regularly trains to invade. We cannot allow china to dominate production of computer chips. Doing so would be a grave threat that could allow a corrupt click of communists to impose a high tech tyranny on the rest of the world.
That’S. Why i’m offering a bipartisan amendment, along with senators, cornyn, schumer warner and others to ensure american leadership in computer chips? In the face of this chinese threat, our proposal calls for key investments in advanced factories and research and development, so that america discovers and then produces the next generation of semiconductor technology.
It also requires the department of defense and the intelligence community to work with trusted industry partners to secure the supply chain for computer chips for our military and other national security needs. This bill is on moonshot investment and such investments don’t come cheap. So i regret that the question of funding this bill has been postponed to another time, but i look forward to having and winning that debate because make no mistake. Robust support is needed to ensure the future of the american semiconductor industry at the very least, it’s necessary to level the playing field so that american companies can compete against the coercive anti competitive and mercantilist policies of communist china and others. And it will provide a surge of support and demand for advanced technology, just as the federal government has always provided. We offer this amendment so that the next digital revolution is also made in the usa, not in communist china. I urge my colleagues to support it and to support america’s continued technological primacy in the world.