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Sen. Cruz from Hong Kong: ‘I’m Here, I’m Dressed In All Black Standing in Solidarity With the Protestors’

Appears on CBS’s ‘Face the Nation’ with Margaret Brennan at the conclusion of weeklong Indo-Pacific ‘Friends & Allies’ tour

October 13, 2019

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HONG KONG - U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today appeared on CBS's ‘Face the Nation' with Margaret Brennan from Hong Kong, where he discussed his weeklong ‘Friends & Allies' tour through the Indo-Pacific to meet with government officials and business leaders about democracy, freedom, and human rights, as well as how to combat China's growing influence and coercion throughout the region and the world. Watch the full interview here.

When asked about his trip to Hong Kong, Sen. Cruz discussed his meetings with protest leaders:

"I'll tell you what's happening here in Hong Kong is inspiring," Sen. Cruz said. "We've seen over two million people come to the streets standing up for freedom, standing up for democracy, and standing up against the oppression of the Chinese Communist regime. I think it is very much in the United States interests to support the people of Hong Kong. I'm here, I'm dressed in all black standing in solidarity with the protesters."

On the NBA's bowing to Communist Chinese Party censorship after the Houston Rockets' General Manager Daryl Morey tweeted in support of the Hong Kong protests, Sen. Cruz discussed leading a bipartisan effort calling on the NBA to defend free speech this week:

"Daryl Morey, the General Manager of the Rockets -- my hometown team, I'm a diehard Houston Rockets fan -- he tweeted a very benign tweet where he said ‘Stand for freedom, stand with Hong Kong.' The Chinese Communist government, they just about lost it. They got so upset, they ended up boycotting the Rockets. They ended up pulling them off TV in China, they ended up pulling them off the internet, they ended up canceling all of their sponsorships. And sadly what ended up happening is the NBA as a league began this series of apologies, and it was really sad to see an American company and indeed a global sports league like the NBA being dragooned into censoring the free speech of American citizens in the interests of big bucks. It's not complicated why the NBA did that, television and the Chinese market is worth a whole lot of money, but thankfully a whole lot of us across the ideological spectrum -- indeed I helped lead a group, a bipartisan group of members of Congress, calling on the NBA to do better, to defend free speech...and I'm proud to say I think the NBA is doing a better job of defending those free speech rights."

As the NBA kowtows to the Chinese Communist Party, Apple and Google pull Hong Kongers' protest apps, and Nike removes Rockets merchandise from Chinese stores, Sen. Cruz will host a series of hearings on corporate America enabling Chinese censorship later this month.

Sen. Cruz also applauded the Trump administration's decision earlier this week to blacklist specific Chinese technology companies that have helped the People's Republic of China spy on and oppress innocent people. Sen. Cruz had introduced legislation directing such a move.

"I introduced legislation called the TIANANMEN Act, that would direct blacklisting the technology companies, the Chinese technology companies that China is using to engage in surveillance, to engage in repression, and imprisonment and torture and murder of up to a million Uighurs or religious minorities, and as you noted just this week the Trump administration announced they were implementing what is the core of my legislation, which is blacklisting those Chinese technology companies that are being used to suppress religious minorities. I think that is a really good step...it's a positive step by the administration."

This week, Sen. Cruz traveled to Pearl Harbor, Tokyo, Taiwan, New Delhi, and Hong Kong. While in Taiwan, Sen. Cruz called into CNBC's ‘Squawk Box.'

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