News & Politics

Press Secretary Dodges on Why Biden Revoked Rule Protecting U.S. Power Grid From China

AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein

It is beginning to look like President* Joe Biden’s only goal is tearing down everything that President Donald Trump put in place regardless of whether or not it is good for Americans. It began with revoking the Keystone pipeline permits that will put thousands of pipeline union workers out of a job. Most of us knew that was coming, but the weirdest revocation yet is Biden’s decision to suspend a rule that protected our power grid from Chinese influence or hacking. The Hill reported on Trump’s order in May.

The executive order bans the use of equipment for the power grid that was manufactured by a company under the control of a foreign adversary, or the buying of any equipment that poses a national security threat.

“Additional steps are required to protect the security, integrity, and reliability of bulk-power system electric equipment used in the United States,” Trump wrote. “In light of these findings, I hereby declare a national emergency with respect to the threat to the United States bulk-power system.”

Former Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette said the order would “greatly diminish the ability of foreign adversaries to target our critical electric infrastructure.”

Considering our adversarial relationship with China, a country that recently brought us the COVID-19 pandemic when China did not alert the rest of the world to the magnitude of the problem they were facing in Wuhan earlier in 2019, it’s head-scratching why any president (Democrat or Republican) would want to give China more access to U.S. infrastructure.

Trump’s order protected our power grid from Chinese technology that might have embedded back-door capability to infiltrate our systems. The Biden team did not offer any official explanation for this change. In fact, the Biden administration has no answer for why the president* decided to rescind the protections. Don’t you find that strange?

Press Secretary Jen Psaki floundered laughably when questioned about the order by Newsmax’s Emerald Robinson. Watch:

Psaki claimed she would “circle back directly” with Robinson and answer this question. But don’t we deserve a public statement on the matter? One thing that Democrats and Republicans should be able to agree on is that Chinese access to our national security should not be a thing. Considering China’s history of duplicity and hacking American interests, why on earth would anyone think this is a good idea? Do they want cheaper equipment? Is it a budgetary issue? Was it a mistake? Sadly, I can’t tell you because the White House isn’t giving us any explanation.

Further, no media is reporting on it other than right-wing media. But CNN did write a piece about China’s access to Taiwan’s power grid. If that report can be believed, China is perfectly capable of using another nation’s power grid as a weapon against them. CNN reported in 2019:

The Philippines’ power grid is under the full control of the Chinese government and could be shut off in time of conflict, according to an internal report prepared for lawmakers seen by CNN.

China’s State Grid Corporation has a 40% stake in the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP), a private consortium that has operated the country’s power lines since 2009. Concerns over potential Chinese interference in the Philippine energy system have dogged the arrangement since it was first agreed a decade ago.

Lawmakers called for an urgent review of the arrangement this month after the report claimed that only Chinese engineers had access to key elements of the system, and that power could in theory be deactivated remotely on Beijing’s orders.

Why would we want this in the United States when everyone knows China is an adversarial country that has already willfully harmed Americans by suppressing information about COVID-19? Was one plague not enough for Joe Biden? Is he hoping for a power grid attack crisis as well?

What possible explanation could the White House have that would make the revocation of Trump’s order to protect the power grid valid? I hope Robinson continues to ask this question until we get an answer.

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