The Trump administration's shutting down of China's consulate in Houston, Texas, was not only "the right move," but one that had to be done regardless of the diplomatic consequences, according to Rep. Darin LaHood, R-Ill., on Newsmax TV.
"We'll have to deal with the consequences diplomatically because of this, but something had to be done," LaHood told Wednesday's "Spicer & Co," declaring "we have to change the behavior of China."
LaHood was effusive in praise for Secretary Mike Pompeo and President Donald Trump in holding China accountable for alleged intellectual property theft, balking on the trade deal to buy American goods, and the global coronavirus pandemic.
"We can't continue to sit by and have China rip us off," LaHood told host Sean Spicer. "And this was a message sent across the bow to China in shutting down their consulate in Houston but also remember, Houston is an area where we have strong aerospace technology, we have a strong energy space there, we have Laughlin Air Force Base.
"China continues to engage in practices – whether it's espionage, whether it's stealing our intellectual property – it has to stop."
LaHood, who serves on the House task force to deal with China, vowed the administration and Congress are "looking at all options" in seeking China's accountability on many fronts, including reports of forced-labor camps of Muslim Uighurs.
"We're looking at sanctions, we're looking at tariffs, we're looking at holding companies accountable that are involved with the forced-labor camps in the western part of China," LaHood said.
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