Story at a glance:
- Democrats and Republicans do not want China to have a technological advantage over the U.S.
- The Chinese Communist Party is rapidly advancing because of intellectual property theft and industrial espionage, said Republican Rep. Mike Gallagher.
- Biden wants $37 million to deal with the chip manufacturing shortages.
On Wednesday, both Democrats and Republicans agreed on a $100 billion spending bill going toward basic and advanced technology research and science in an effort to compete with China.
The five-year spending bill, called the Endless Frontier Act, was sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), Republican Sen. Todd Young (Ind.) and others.
Lawmakers also want to authorize another $10 billion to be designated to about 10 regional tech hubs and create a supply chain crisis response program, Reuters reported. The bill's purpose is to have the government strengthen the private sector and university research efforts in advanced technologies with federal funding.
“There is a bipartisan consensus that the United States must invest in the technologies of the future to out-compete China,” Schumer said, adding “whichever nation develops new technologies first – be they democratic or authoritarian – will set the terms for their use.”
“[The U.S. superiority in science and technology] is at risk. The Chinese Communist Party has used decades of intellectual property theft and industrial espionage to close this technological gap in a way that threatens not only our economic security but also our way of life,” Republican Rep. Mike Gallagher (Wis.), another sponsor, said.
The Senate Commerce Committee is expected to mark up the bill next week as Schumer looks to fast-track approval.
Schumer is committing himself in promoting an “emergency spending” regarding funding semiconductor manufacturing provisions from last year’s defense bill as its own entity.
In response to the U.S.'s chip manufacturing shortage, causing automakers and other manufacturers to cut production, President Biden proposed a $37 billion bill to fund their efforts.
In addition, Biden wants a $2.3 trillion infrastructure and jobs spending bill that includes semiconductor manufacturing and research.
“Seminal piece of legislation taking definitive steps to restore American competitiveness in 10 key advanced-technology industries of the future, such as biotech, clean energy and semiconductors,” The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation said.
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