Pence: Biden should call for 2022 Olympics to be moved out of Beijing

Pence: Biden should call for 2022 Olympics to be moved out of Beijing

Former Vice President Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PenceWant to evaluate Donald Trump's judgment? Listen to Donald Trump Will Pence primary Trump — and win? Poll: 73 percent of Democratic voters would consider voting for Biden in the 2024 primary MORE on Wednesday called for the 2022 Winter Olympics to be relocated out of Beijing, urging President BidenJoe BidenTrump endorses Ken Paxton over George P. Bush in Texas attorney general race GOP lawmakers request Cuba meeting with Biden For families, sending money home to Cuba shouldn't be a political football MORE to oppose the host city because of China's human rights record.

"President Biden should make a clear and unequivocal demand that the 2022 Winter Olympics be moved from Beijing unless China comes clean on the origins of COVID-19 and immediately ends persecution of the Uyghur people," Pence said to applause in a speech at The Heritage Foundation on U.S.-China relations.

"The Olympics should only take place in countries that respect fundamental human rights and the well-being of mankind," Pence added.

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The former vice president, who delivered two major policy speeches on China while in office, pointed to the relocation of the 2022 games as one of several actions Biden and his team could take to get tougher on China. 

Pence also called for the administration to consider halting U.S. funding of scientific research in China in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic originating there. He also suggested Biden should accelerate efforts to decouple the American economy from Chinese industries to protect U.S. interests and improve domestic supply chains.

A number of conservatives have called on the Biden administration to boycott the Winter Olympics in Beijing or for the event to be moved out of the country over China’s repression of Uyghur Muslims, which both the Trump and Biden administrations have described as genocide, and Beijing's crackdown on human rights in Hong Kong.

White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiSenators scramble to save infrastructure deal Overnight Health Care: New round of vaccine mandates | Health groups call for mandates for all health workers | Rising case count reignites debate over restrictions On The Money: Senate infrastructure talks on shaky grounds | Trump tells Republicans to walk away | GOP sees debt ceiling as its leverage against Biden MORE said in April a boycott was not being considered by the administration after a State Department spokesperson suggested it could be discussed.