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house Bill H.R. 3289

Should the U.S. Take Steps to Deter China From Undermining Hong Kong’s Autonomy?

Argument in favor

Hong Kong needs to remain a free, democratic, and autonomous entity but is facing increasing interference from the communist Chinese government. This bipartisan bill would show that the U.S. stands with Hong Kong by sanctioning those violating human rights and taking steps to protect American citizens and businesses in the event that extradition from Hong Kong to China is allowed.

Troy's Opinion
···
07/01/2019
Of course you should. Unfortunately nothing will happen since china has us by the balls because Trump is a moron and doesn’t know what he’s doing. Not to mention John Bolton would rather go to war with Iran because that’ll make more money than any humanitarian efforts. The Republican Party is a bunch of sycophants and criminals
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Robert's Opinion
···
07/01/2019
We should help them to keep their freedom. We should not abandon them.
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Matthew's Opinion
···
07/01/2019
Having lived in HK recently, the _vast_ majority of Hong Kongers vehemently dislike mainland Chinese policies and control. The protests are the freedom that Hong Kongers
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Argument opposed

If China wants to undermine Hong Kong’s autonomy and status as a democratic government it’s going to do so whether or not the U.S. threatens sanctions in response. It may be a bipartisan effort, but this bill ultimately won’t do much to protect human rights or democracy in Hong Kong.

jimK's Opinion
···
07/01/2019
Hard to do this given our administrations authoritarian approach to governance - kind of hypocritical. Also, we should not be telling a sovereign nation how they need to act. I do think that a diplomatic reminder of the economic benefits to China of an autonomous Hong Kong is warranted as are the benefits thus afforded to word trading partners.
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Hillary's Opinion
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07/01/2019
Not now. We have no moral authority left to spend anywhere. Let's get our own dictator wannabe and the power hungry senators and reps (who are so greedy that they knowingly allow a dictator-in-training to begin to flourish) out of office and consigned to history before we go telling anyone else how to live. Mitch McConnell I'm talking to YOU!
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burrkitty's Opinion
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07/01/2019
This isn’t any of our business at all. This is between Great Britain 🇬🇧 , Hong Kong 🇭🇰 , and Mainland China 🇨🇳.
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      Committee on Foreign Affairs
    IntroducedJune 13th, 2019

What is House Bill H.R. 3289?

This bill — the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act — would reaffirm the U.S. commitment to democracy, human rights, and autonomy of Hong Kong and aim to prevent the People’s Republic of China from undermining Hong Kong’s rights. It would require the administration to develop a strategy for protecting U.S. citizens and businesses from risks posed by Hong Kong allowing extradition to China, which would include revisions to the U.S.-Hong Kong extradition agreement or a State Dept. travel advisory.

The administration would be required to identify persons responsible for the abduction of Hong Kong booksellers and journalists and those complicit in suppressing basic freedoms, in addition to people complicit in the rendition of individuals to mainland China for trial or detention. Persons involved in such repression would be barred from entering the U.S. and all of their U.S.-based assets would be frozen.

The Secretary of State would be required to make an annual certification of Hong Kong’s autonomy to justify special export & trade treatment current federal law grants Hong Kong. The Secretary of Commerce would be required to issue an annual report assessing whether Hong Kong is adequately enforcing both U.S. export regulations related to sensitive dual-use items and sanctions imposed by the U.S. and United Nations, particularly those on Iran and North Korea.

Additionally, this bill would clarify that visa applicants shouldn’t be denied visas based on the applicant’s arrest, detention, or other adverse government action taken as a result of their participation in the non-violent, pro-democracy advocacy, human rights, or the rule of law in Hong Kong.

Impact

Hong Kong and its people; China; and the U.S.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 3289

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-Depth: Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ) introduced this bill to reaffirm America’s commitment to Hong Kong’s democracy, human rights, and legal system at a time when the Chinese Communist Party is attempting to undermine Hong Kong’s autonomy:

“We introduce this legislation today because democracy and freedom are under assault in Hong Kong, and it is critical for the Congress to reaffirm the United States’ commitment to Hong Kong’s autonomy, to the human rights guaranteed the people of Hong Kong, and to those peacefully protesting the Chinese government’s increasingly rough oversight of Hong Kong. It is in everyone’s interest that Hong Kong remain a free and prosperous bridge between China and the world. But if Beijing intends to force Hong Kong into becoming just another mainland Chinese city under authoritarian rule, we must reevaluate whether Hong Kong warrants the special status granted under U.S. law.”

Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA), an original cosponsor of this bill and the chair of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC), added:

“This legislation makes clear that the U.S. Congress stands with the people of Hong Kong in their effort to preserve human rights and the rule of law in Hong Kong. If the extradition bill moves forward and Hong Kong’s autonomy and democratic institutions continue to erode due to interference from the Chinese government, the Congress has no choice but to reassess whether Hong Kong can receive preferential economic and trade benefits under U.S. law.”

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), the CECC co-chair who sponsored this bill’s companion in the Senate, said:

“As over one million Hong Kongers take to the streets protesting amendments to the territory’s extradition law, the U.S. must send a strong message that we stand with those peacefully advocating for freedom and the rule of law and against Beijing’s growing interference in Hong Kong affairs. I am proud to re-introduce legislation that places the U.S. firmly on the side of human rights and democracy and against those who would erode the freedoms and autonomy guaranteed to the people of Hong Kong, freedoms that have made the city a prosperous global commercial hub governed by the rule of law.”

This legislation has the support of six bipartisan cosponsors evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans.


Of Note: Hong Kong was a colony of the United Kingdom until it became a special administrative region of the People’s Republic of China on June 30, 1997. The Chinese and British governments agreed in their Joint Declaration on the Question of Hong Kong that Hong Kong would continue to practice a democratic, capitalist system of government and law for at least 50 years after being reunified with socialist China. It has never been publicly stated what will happen to Hong Kong’s governance in 2047 (Macau, a similarly-governed former Portuguese colony, will be in the same situation in in 2049).

China's perceived  interference in Hong Kong's affairs have raised questions over whether the communist regime was abiding by the terms of the "one country, two systems" policy. A wave of protests swept Hong Kong recently after its pro-mainland chief executive Carrie Lam proposed a bill to allow extradition of people from Hong Kong to face trial in mainland China. After Lam announced she would postpone consideration of the bill, two million of Hong Kong’s seven million residents took to the streets, with many demanding the bill’s formal withdrawal and Lam’s resignation. Lam said the bill wouldn’t be reintroduced during her time in office if public outcry persists, but stopped short of withdrawing the bill.

Another wave of protests in Hong Kong began on July 1st, the 22nd anniversary of its handover from the United Kingdom to China. Protesters took over the Hong Kong Legislative Council building, where they raised Hong Kong's colonial era flag and spray painted anti-China slogans on the walls. Pro-China police forces have warned that they will soon attempt to clear the legislature.


Media:

Summary by Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: iStock.com / kuriko917)

AKA

Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act of 2019

Official Title

To amend the Hong Kong Policy Act of 1992 and for other purposes.

    Of course you should. Unfortunately nothing will happen since china has us by the balls because Trump is a moron and doesn’t know what he’s doing. Not to mention John Bolton would rather go to war with Iran because that’ll make more money than any humanitarian efforts. The Republican Party is a bunch of sycophants and criminals
    Like (43)
    Follow
    Share
    Hard to do this given our administrations authoritarian approach to governance - kind of hypocritical. Also, we should not be telling a sovereign nation how they need to act. I do think that a diplomatic reminder of the economic benefits to China of an autonomous Hong Kong is warranted as are the benefits thus afforded to word trading partners.
    Like (55)
    Follow
    Share
    Not now. We have no moral authority left to spend anywhere. Let's get our own dictator wannabe and the power hungry senators and reps (who are so greedy that they knowingly allow a dictator-in-training to begin to flourish) out of office and consigned to history before we go telling anyone else how to live. Mitch McConnell I'm talking to YOU!
    Like (36)
    Follow
    Share
    This isn’t any of our business at all. This is between Great Britain 🇬🇧 , Hong Kong 🇭🇰 , and Mainland China 🇨🇳.
    Like (20)
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    Share
    We have no moral authority to be the boss of the world. Of course we want the people of Hong Kong to be safe. However, I noticed we don’t like election interference in our country by dictatorships, nor do we like to be told what to do within our borders by other countries. Why would other countries like to install us as their bosses? No more wars. Get the corrupt foreign installed dictator wannabe out of office.
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    We should help them to keep their freedom. We should not abandon them.
    Like (12)
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    Having lived in HK recently, the _vast_ majority of Hong Kongers vehemently dislike mainland Chinese policies and control. The protests are the freedom that Hong Kongers
    Like (11)
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    I am posting a qualified YES because I believe the US should lead in this area, though the current administration will not be the ones to do it. We need to resume our role as the LEADER of the free world, not behaving as we did in the past by strong arming countries at every turn and invading countries to establish our version of “democracy”, but assume a more effective role as the respecter of nations and national borders that works to INFLUENCE other nations to do likewise. As with our Congress, we do not have to like every other country, but we do need to respect their right to form their own governments in whatever way they see fit. And we need to respect their borders as well as work to demonstrate that they must respect ours. People in every corner of the globe respect the US as an example to follow in creating governments that represent their people and in which their people can directly participate. If we want world changes, a sincere effort on the part of all countries, especially the US, to coordinate efforts into real actions that can support and influence countries that struggle with how to implement governmental forms that work effectively for their particular needs could produce a greater overall cooperation and ensure a more stable peace worldwide. In the case of Hong Kong, the proper influence over time may encourage China to see the true value of their window on the capitalist world and to be encouraged to manage it effectively rather than destroy it senselessly. It is our leadership that could accomplish this if we but set our minds and our foreign policy goals with mutual respect and influence rather than aggression.
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    Hong Kong should remain free, but this is not Our issue. America Must stop attempting to impose Our ideals on the rest of the world. We Must guide, but never force.
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    The US needs to keep its nose out if others affairs. Great Britain took over Hong Kong after the Opium War. So if the people of Hong Kong want to do something it is up to them. Not us (US).
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    I fully support and recommend passage. We should support Hong Kong in any way short of supplying weapons. It’s been the United States position to support fledgling democracies since the Cold War. #MAGA
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    Yes, all forms of authoritarianism need to be vanquished. Sadly, I’m not sure this can be a credible effort with trump in the White House.
    Like (7)
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    The “One Country, Two Systems” was brokered by the United Kingdom and the People’s Republic of China. In no way, should the United States government be enforcing this policy upon China. I sympathize with the Hong Kong protestors and understand China’s single party system beginning to seep into Hong Kong, but if the population of Hong Kong wanted its political freedom, then the United Kingdom is responsible for enforcing this policy. The United States must not interfere unless asked to by the United Kingdom. It sucks, but this is not our policy to enforce.
    Like (6)
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    The right thing to do is help all democratic nations that enshrine values held by our own constitution and allow them to flourish and put down any authoritarian regime threatening them. The United States of America should stand with Hong Kong.
    Like (5)
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    I’m not a fan if China-not in the least. But, this isn’t our fight. If Hong Kong was one of our allies, it would be a different story.
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    Yes! Hong Kong traditionally was alway a port of Free Trade and where international goods were tax free as The British rented it for 99 years from The Emperor Of China who the Communists deposed! The British at that point should have just nullified the agreement and annexed it as a full territory at that point in time! When the communists took control of China did fret offer any one money for the taking of their lands thigh they owned it for centuries? No! That Nation, The People’s Republic Of China is now and and always have been considered a Rogue Nation as any Communist/ Socialist Government should be! I stand by The Free people of Hong Kikongo as I stand for The Free National Government Of China in Exile on Taiwan!
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    The former world leader America would’ve stood up for democratic values, but trump has undermined our credibility and bankrupted our moral ground. VOTING GOP ENABLERS OUT to rebuild our stature and leadership.
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    This bill won't do much too deter China from infringing upon Hong Kong's individually governed territory. However. I find it grossly hypocritical that we have a obviously corrupt Lawless unstable treasonous яepublican Tяump Pence Administration being loud continue is Lawless tirade on our nation, being enabled by a Lawless Hypocritical derelict Яepublican Senate❗📣
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    Hong Kong’s problems started when the British left. Make them a British protectorate again, or, even better, grant them independence! China cannot be trusted to protect the hardworking people of Hong Kong. America needs to stop sucking up to bad countries with anti-humanitarian policies.
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    America’s interest Yes. Great Britain is at fault here for relinquishing control to China.
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