Prominent House Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX) criticized the Biden Administration during an interview this week. The member of Congress also encouraged Washington to take further action following the overflight of a Chinese spy balloon.
The chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee spoke to CBS News this weekend to discuss the further implications of the transit of the Chinese spy balloon.
McCaul echoed an increasing sentiment in Congress supporting sanctions against the Chinese government and associated companies. The congressman stated that he would make it a top priority to “stop the export of technology to China that then goes into their most advanced weapons systems.”
The member of Congress cited the recent actions to restrict access to American technology among six Chinese entities.
McCaul expressed concern over the time that the balloon overflew much of the United States prior to being shot down off the coast of South Carolina. The Texas Republican cited the balloon flying over three sensitive nuclear sites, which he said: “tells a story as to what the Chinese were up to.”
In an earlier interview, McCaul described the Chinese balloon overflight as a test, calling it a “shot across the bow.”
President Biden will speak to a joint session of Congress tonight against the backdrop of renewed tensions with China and a showdown with House Republicans over the US debt ceiling.
Speaking with @DavidWestin, Rep. Michael McCaul (R) Texas, weighs in https://t.co/EMV5AkmjUJ pic.twitter.com/9X5FOL6DK9
— Bloomberg TV (@BloombergTV) February 7, 2023
During the interview, McCaul stated that he believed that the spy balloon may have allowed China a closer look at American military capacity than a higher satellite.
Rep. McCaul described the Chinese action as a “provocation.”
McCaul was not the only Republican to criticize the Biden Administration’s decision to wait until the balloon arrived at the Atlantic Ocean to shoot down the balloon.
House Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY), third in the House Republican leadership, described the balloon incident as a major test of the Biden Administration. Stefanik wrote that President Biden “abysmally failed” at this test.
Rep. Dan Bishop (R-NC) agreed with the sentiment. Bishop asked why the Biden White House allowed the balloon to fully transit the continental United States.
Members of Congress also utilized a public hearing regarding the balloon to seek answers from officials from the Department of Defense.