Congressman Mo Brooks, R-Huntsville, announced Thursday that he has cosponsored the bipartisan Concerns Over Nations Funding University Campus Institutes in the United States Act, or CONFUCIUS Act.
The CONFUCIUS Act is sponsored by U.S. Rep. Donna Shalala, D-Florida. The CONFUCIUS Act establishes requirements for colleges and universities that receive federal funding and have contracts or agreements with Chinese Confucius Institutes.
The contracts or agreements must include clear provisions that (1) protect the academic freedom of the institutions; (2) prohibit the application of foreign law on the institutions’ campuses; and (3) grant full managerial authority of the institutes to the institutions, including full control over teaching plans, activities, research grants and employment decisions.
An identical bill has been passed in the Senate by unanimous consent on June 10, 2020. Sen. John Kennedy, R-Louisiana, sponsored the bill.
“The Communist Chinese Party is America’s economic, military, and health foe,” Brooks said. “It is an open secret that the Communist Chinese Party’s #1 foreign policy goal is to help assist with and manage America’s economic and military decline. To their credit, the Communist Chinese are creative and clever in their infiltration and subversion of American institutions. In that vein, the so-called ‘Confucius Institutes’ at Troy University and Alabama A&M University are nothing more than propaganda and spying units of the Communist Chinese Party.”
“So far, forty-five patriotic American universities from 30 different states have already shut down their Confucius Institutes since 2014,” Brooks said. “It is a tragedy that the State of Alabama has not joined in that patriotic effort.”
“The evidence against Communist China is overwhelming,” Brooks said. “The American Association of University Professors has decried the threat Communist China poses to academic freedom and the Director of the FBI’s Counterintelligence Division has warned of Communist China’s efforts to conduct espionage through Confucius Institutes. Earlier this month, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo designated the Confucius Institute U.S. Center as a ‘foreign mission,’ recognizing CIUS for what it is: an entity advancing Beijing’s global propaganda and malign influence campaign on U.S. campuses and K-12 classrooms.”
“Confucius Institutes are funded by the [People’s Republic of China] and part of the Chinese Communist Party’s global influence and propaganda apparatus,” Pompeo said in a statement. “The United States wants to ensure that students on U.S. campuses have access to Chinese language and cultural offerings free from the manipulation of the Chinese Communist Party and its proxies.”
“The Communist Chinese Party cannot be allowed to gain influence over America’s education system or undermine American national security,” Brooks concluded. “America must wise up and fight back against Communist China’s egregious espionage and propaganda on American soil. As students head back to college campuses, please remember there are two Alabama universities that have refused to follow the lead of 40+ patriotic universities across America by closing their Confucius Institutes. The two aiding and abetting the Chinese Communist Party? Troy University and Alabama A&M. Last month, I formally requested that Governor Kay Ivey and other state leaders be patriotic and heed the warnings about Confucius Institutes. To date, the State of Alabama has done nothing to help America on this issue, thereby letting Communist Chinese Party espionage and propaganda units continue to infiltrate our university system, sow the seeds of discord and dissent, and spread anti-American lies. I’m taking action in Congress to fight back against Communist China. I would hope that Alabama leaders would join me and other patriotic states and Americans and do the same.”
Troy University has disputed Brooks’ assertions about the Confucius Institute on the Troy Campus.
Brooks and State Rep. Tommy Hanes have been urging both Alabama universities with Confucius Institutes to close them. Brooks is in fifth term representing Alabama’s 5th Congressional District. Brooks has no Democratic general election opponent.