It was already "incredible" that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is requiring lawmakers to wear N95 or K95 masks on the House floor, but even more "unbelievable" that the masks provided for members of Congress were made in China, considering the originations of the COVID-19 pandemic, Rep. Rob Wittman said on Newsmax Thursday.
"Here's the mask," the Virginia Republican said on Newsmax's "Wake Up America," while holding one up. "It's on the House floor, in big, bold letters saying 'made in China.' It's unbelievable that this is what the speaker is doing. We know the source of this virus, being in China, being there in Wuhan, and then [us] walking on the House floor with these 'made in China' masks on our faces."
The move comes at a time when the United States is too dependent on China for items such as masks and PPE (personal protection equipment), he added.
"It's counter to everything that this nation should be doing, cutting its dependence from China, and making sure that China is being held accountable for what's happened around the world with this virus," said Wittman.
He said he's written a letter to Pelosi urging her to support American workers by supplying masks that are made in the United States, but he hasn't gotten a response.
"Not only should I get a response, but the American people should get a response as to why Speaker Pelosi is putting in the hands of members of Congress these masks made in China," said Wittman. "Why isn't she supporting U.S. businesses … think about how unbelievable this is, China being the source of the virus and it's now profiting off the spread of the virus by selling PPE to the United States. It's unbelievable."
He added that the words "made in America" are still important, and U.S. businesses can compete worldwide.
"We need to bring those jobs back to the United States," said Wittman. "Things like semiconductors, things like pharmaceutical ingredients, those sorts of things need to be produced back here in the United States. They are critical to our economy, and we do not want to be reliant upon nations that are not our friends, that are specifically our enemies."
Such manufacturing would also provide high-paying jobs and a firm basis for the economy while being crucial to the United States' national security, he continued.
However, policies under President Joe Biden are "all very sympathetic to China and Russia," said Wittman. "It's incredible to me that on one side, they say that, Oh, gosh, there was this sympathy towards Russia in the policies put forward by the Trump administration, yet this administration has done nothing to create our nation's Independence from China or Russia, for that matter, or to stand up against Xi Jinping or stand up against Vladimir Putin."
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