From the time China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001 and into 2019, 42-54% of Americans viewed China favorably, with even one in 10 viewing the country very favorably in 2017. This all changed over the past several years. According to both Gallup and Pew Research, Americans’ negative view of China today is at roughly 80%. Both Democratic and Republican voters share the increasing sentiment that China poses the largest threat to the United States moving forward – a sentiment unlikely to wane any time soon.

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Republicans chose Representative Mike Gallagher of the Green Bay, Wis., area as the Chair. He served in the U.S. Marines with two deployments to Iraq, has a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University, a master’s degree in Security Studies from Georgetown University, a second in Strategic Intelligence from National Intelligence University and a Ph.D. in International Relations from Georgetown. His counterpart, the Ranking Democratic Member on the Select Committee on China, is Representative Raja Krishnamoorthi from Schaumberg, Ill., who received his bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering at Princeton prior to graduating from Harvard Law School and becoming president of a small technology business. Both men are in their fourth term in Congress and under 50 years old.

I provide their background only to help the public better understand not only their approach, but the thinking in Washington, D.C. – that the U.S. is now, and will remain, in a state of strategic conflict with the Chinese Communist Party. Having lobbied both these members of Congress in the past, they have a reputation of being forward-thinking lawmakers who are not just looking at policy toward Beijing to-day but how Washington can best position the U.S. for the future. They both bridge the gaps between manufacturing, policymaking and future technologies using their personal backgrounds and also the heavy manufacturing footprint in both their Congressional Districts.

Congressman Gallagher is looking at an approach that he and others call “strategic decoupling,” which is different than a hard break between the world’s two largest economies. The Select Committee does not have the authority to move legislation to the floor of the U.S. House but will develop a series of recommendations that will overlap with the standing committee, which may ultimately craft bipartisan legislation further targeting China.

The Committee will examine the technology race, advanced manufacturing growth and dual-use materials that have both commercial and military applications in China, among numerous other topics. We know that lawmakers want to review the increasing use of “entities lists” compiled by the Biden administration. These refer to the inclusion on lists that bar importation into the U.S. or exportation to China related to semiconductors, telecommunications technology, military goods and imports manufactured using forced labor.

The focus on China is not exclusive to the new committee on Capitol Hill. The House Foreign Affairs, Homeland Security, Armed Services and Intelligence Committees all plan investigations. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy lists China as one of his top-three priorities, and the U.S. Senate has no shortage of China hawks in that upper chamber.

U.S. restrictions and focus are now on virtually all aspects of relations with China, from technology controls to military positioning to labor-rights enforcement. States around the country are re-examining Chinese foreign direct investment into the U.S., including into the food supply. In August 2022, President Biden signed into law measures that aim to counter U.S. reliance on Chinese imports and in-crease domestic semiconductor manufacturing while also investing in U.S. battery capabilities.

Much of the concern stems from the lack of division between the Chinese government, the Chinese Communist Party and Chinese companies. It is in Beijing’s strategic plan to specifically view manufacturing companies as also in the service of the military and not in existence solely for commercial gain. A report last year showed that wholly or partially Chinese government-owned companies accounted for more than half of the top 100 largest listed corporations in China.

While the U.S. Congress increases its focus on Beijing, the Biden administration has kept the Trump-era tariffs on over 10,000 Chinese imports in place. The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative is currently reviewing the nearly 1,500 public comments it received on the effectiveness of the 25% and 7.5% tariffs on Chinese imports, and many believe they will keep at least some of the tariffs in an effort to maintain leverage over Beijing.

Few in Washington expect much bipartisanship this year or even agreement within each party. When it comes to China, however, Republicans and Democrats are unified in their rising concern and eagerness to act. We expect a continuation of restrictions on certain exports and technology to China; the Biden administration to keep many of the import tariffs in place; and federal and state governments to incentivize manufacturing in America while barring certain Chinese investments.

In response to Gallup’s 2019 poll, respondents said they considered Russia “to be the United States’ greatest enemy.” That sentiment has changed among the American voter, and their Senators and Representatives on Capitol Hill have taken note. China is not sitting back as all this occurs, meaning this next generation of lawmakers, such as those helming the U.S. House Select Committee on the Strategic Competition between the U.S. and the Chinese Communist Party, have a full plate in 2023.