MADISON, Wis. — The Chinese Communist Party is crying xenophobia to avoid accountability for its handling of the coronavirus, while attempting to sow racial upheaval on US soil, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo charged Wednesday.
Pompeo made the allegation during remarks to the Wisconsin state Senate in Madison’s Capitol building, warning of a larger effort by the Chinese government to subvert American life.
“They … want you to believe that America’s righteous anger at the CCP over its handling of the coronavirus has something to do with race,” said Pompeo. “It does not. It has everything to do with citizens who are no longer with us, children who aren’t able to go back to school, jobs that have been lost.
“The CCP thinks it can drown out American cries for accountability with shouts of racism.”
Republicans on the House Foreign Affairs Committee detailed in a Monday report — obtained early by The Post — how the Chinese government spent the early days of the outbreak in Wuhan destroying evidence, attempting to silence watchdogs and hiding the truth from international health experts.
Those actions potentially allowed the coronavirus to grow into a pandemic and cost hundreds of thousands of lives — implications that Chinese President Xi Jinping was happy to gloss over in a speech Tuesday before the United Nations General Assembly.
Pompeo on Wednesday alleged that the CCP is attempting to use claims of racism as not just a shield but a sword.
“The CCP wants to foment the kind of strife we’ve seen in Minneapolis, and Portland, and Kenosha,” he said, referring to American cities rocked in recent months by violent demonstrations over police brutality and racial discrimination. “That’s disgusting. We can’t let it happen.”
Pompeo said that tactic is just one of many the CCP is employing in an attempt to enlarge its toehold in the US — one state and one community at a time.
In February, a Chinese consul based in Chicago reached out to Wisconsin state Sen. Roger Roth, angling for him to pass a resolution praising China’s handling of the coronavirus.
Pompeo said Chinese envoys are making similar entreaties across America.
“The reality is that most every state legislature in the country has probably received a letter from the CCP much like Senator Roth’s email,” he said. “The Chinese consulate in New York, for instance, is incredibly politically active.”
At an even more local level, Pompeo cited the infiltration of the NYPD by an alleged Chinese secret agent, Baimadajie Angwang.
“We’re fighting to protect our wallets, our hearts, our minds and our freedoms,” said Pompeo. “Each of us, as public officials, must never be complacent or complicit in the CCP’s campaign to fracture American society and to silence American voices.”
Additional reporting by Aaron Feis in New York