GOP reps reintroduce bill that would allow Americans to sue China over COVID

by Jacob Fuller

Willie R. Tubbs, FISM News

Late last week, a pair of Republican congressmen reintroduced a bill that would allow American citizens to sue the Chinese Communist Party over an alleged misinformation campaign related to the outbreak of COVID-19.

Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.), newly appointed as chair of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, was joined by Rep. Michael Burgess, MD (R-Texas) in introducing a piece of legislation that bears both of their last names.

“Knowing that [Chinese President] Xi Jinping and his [communist] regime systematically failed to be truthful and transparent, our legislation seeks to not only gain access to more information but also provide much-needed relief to the loved ones of those who died and others who have suffered severe economic loss during the pandemic,” Smith said in a statement.

The meat of the Smith-Burgess bill is a measure that would waive the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, a 1976 law that establishes the rather strict criteria under which foreign governments can be hailed into court.

Were the bill to pass — and it’s highly unlikely that it does, given the make-up of the Senate and White House — American citizens would enjoy the right to sue the Chinese government for damages relating to death, injury, or financial and property losses associated with COVID.

Smith-Burgess also presupposes that China was “willful or grossly negligent’ in its “misrepresentation of information to the World Health Organization (WHO).”

“The Chinese Communist [Party’s] refusal to provide real-time information killed Americans,” Burgess said. “The American people lost loved ones and suffered a multitude of losses during the Coronavirus pandemic. They deserve the ability to get answers from the CCP.”

While the bill has numerous hurdles to clear in order to become a law, the most challenging aspect of the proposal is what to do if the measure actually passes.

Specifically, the congressmen did not articulate how an American court would force a representative of the Chinese government into a trial, much less how an American could collect on a judgment assuming one was handed down.

Still, Smith and Burgess believe the law would ultimately prove beneficial, primarily in the area of sussing out what actually happened to cause COVID-19.

“We must finally get to the truth about what happened and who was involved in this deception in order to bring justice to those who suffered profoundly from COVID-19,” Smith said.