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U.S. Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) wrote a series of tweets criticizing the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in the Senate, attacking what she felt was a lack of attention given to a proposed amendment prohibiting the Chinese Communist Party from purchasing the United States' agricultural land.
"Biden needs to promise the American people that no tax dollars will be used to help the Chinese Communist Party buy American farmland," Blackburn tweeted. "Why would Democrats vote against an amendment that keeps federal funds out of the Chinese Communist Party’s hands and into American farmers?"
"Ban the CCP from buying U.S. farmland," she continued.
The $700 billion climate, tax, and health care package passed by a 51-50 vote, with Vice President Kamala Harris serving as the tiebreaker. Over $300 billion will go to climate initiatives, while other provisions will expand the IRS, introduce a new tax on stock buybacks, and set a 15% tax floor on large corporations. The House of Representatives will consider the legislation before it can be signed by President Joe Biden.
"During a recession and with inflation at a 41-year high, Democrats just passed a bill to spend over $700 billion, increase taxes and decrease energy production," Blackburn said in a statement on her official website, calling the legislation "reckless." "We should be cutting taxes, not increasing them."
Prior to the act's passing in the Senate, Blackburn had introduced an amendment to the legislation that would have prohibited the CCP from buying up more U.S. farmland, as well as cracked down on CCP members attempting to join American universities.
"Beijing is positioning itself to exploit the United States," Blackburn told the Washington Free Beacon. "The Chinese Communist Party is attempting to take over the USA across all industries — pushing spies into U.S. universities and buying U.S. farmland. China is succeeding with weak leaders like Joe Biden in the White House. We must crack down on China and unravel our ties."
According to Politico, Chinese investors and Chinese-owned companies owned nearly 200,000 acres of U.S. farmland, worth approximately $1.9 billion, in early 2020. The CCP has a history of expanding its role in the American agriculture industry, with its actions including purchases of American food companies such as pork-processor Smithfield Foods.