Josh Hawley Seeks to Ban Federal Contracts for China-Linked Consulting Firms
A plan by Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) would prohibit the United States federal government from awarding contracts to China-linked consulting firms.
The legislation, called the Time to Choose Act, would prohibit the Department of Defense and other federal agencies from dishing out contracts to U.S. consulting firms that contract with the Chinese government, Chinese Communist Party, or subsidiaries.
“The fact that these consultants are awarded huge contracts by our Defense Department and other federal agencies, while they are simultaneously working to advance China’s efforts to coerce the United States is appalling and completely unacceptable,” Hawley said.
“It is well past time that we hold these companies accountable and prohibit this kind of conflict of interest in government contracting,” he continued.
In addition, Hawley’s legislation would impose penalties on consulting firms that attempt to hide or misrepresent their affiliations with the Chinese government. They would also be banned from receiving future contracts.
Likewise, the legislation would terminate existing federal contracts with firms working for China and require those firms to pay fines in the sum of three times what the U.S. government spent on their contract.
Most recently, McKinsey & Company was found to be working for China-owned corporations while also holding federal contracts with the United States government. Since 2008, the firm has received nearly $900 million in taxpayer money via contracts.