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Florida’s Senators: Thrift Savings Plan Needs to Stop Sending Federal, Military Retirement Funds to China

american flag with stock ticker next to chinese flag

This week, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., brought back a proposal to “ ban the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board (FRTIB) from steering federal retirement savings to China.”

Rubio reintroduced the Taxpayers and Savers Protection (TSP) with U.S. Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla., as a co-sponsor. Other backers include U.S. Sens. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, Josh Hawley, R-Mo., and Jeanne Shaheen, D-NH.

“The Thrift Savings Plan is a retirement and investment plan for federal employees and members of the military. The board that manages the Thrift Savings Plan had been funneling the retirement savings of these servicemembers and federal employees to state-sponsored Chinese companies directly funding the Chinese Communist Party,” Rubio’s office insisted. “This bill prohibits the TSP from investing in companies listed on the exchanges of a country of concern, headquartered in a country of concern, or substantially controlled by a country of concern. The bill identifies countries of concern based on the Office of the Director of National Intelligence’s annual threat assessment. Those countries are China, Iran, North Korea, and Russia.”

Rubio and the co-sponsors weighed in on the proposal this week.

“It is absolutely unacceptable that the Chinese Communist Party and government continues to profit from the retirement accounts of U.S. government employees and members of the military. Congress can’t sit on the sidelines and allow the TSP Board to fund Beijing’s rise at the expense of our nation’s future prosperity and national security interests,” said Rubio.

“Americans work hard to save for retirement. The United States cannot expose federal employees’ retirement assets to go to companies in countries that do not have their best interests at heart, like Communist China and Russia. I am proud to stand with Senator Rubio to reintroduce our Taxpayers and Savers Protection Act to ban such investments so hard working Americans can feel confident that their nest eggs will be safe and sound when they are ready to retire,” said Scott.

“The People’s Republic of China should not be profiting from the retirement accounts of U.S. government employees and service members. It’s dangerous to prop up companies that threaten the interests of the U.S. and our allies, and it would be particularly egregious to do so with the hard-earned savings of federal workers, including our military and civilian workforce. I am proud to again join Senator Rubio on this bicameral, bipartisan legislation to ensure that this does not continue, and I’m glad our legislation now expands this ban to adversaries like Russia, Iran and North Korea to send a clear message about how the U.S. characterizes Xi’s behavior and the actors he aligns with,” said Shaheen.

The bill was sent to the U.S. Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. So far, there is no companion measure over in the U.S. House.

Author

  • Originally from Jacksonville, Kevin Derby is a contributing writer for Florida Daily and covers politics across Florida.

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