A Republican lawmaker has taken House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to task over a warning she issued to U.S. athletes competing in the Winter Olympics in Beijing.
On Friday, Pelosi said the U.S. athletes shouldn’t risk “incurring the anger” of the “ruthless” CCP.
“As I say, as I wish the athletes well, I do not encourage them to speak out against the Chinese government there because I fear for their safety if they do,” Pelosi said.
“Make no mistake — our athletes should participate,” Pelosi added. “They’ve trained, they’re disciplined, they’ve dreamed, they’ve aspired, they’ve worked hard. But this year we must celebrate them from home as they compete in China.”
She indicated she believes U.S. athletes should keep quiet in China to avoid the Chinese government’s wrath.
“I would say to our athletes: You’re there to compete. Do not risk incurring the anger of the Chinese government because they are ruthless,” Pelosi said. “I know there is a temptation on the part of some to speak out while they are there. I respect that, but I also worry about what the Chinese government might do to their reputations and to their families.”
Pelosi continued: “So, again, participate, let us celebrate from abroad, and don’t risk thinking that there are any good intentions on the part of the People’s Republic of China’s government — because there are none.”
But those warnings did not sit well with Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), who said he believes it just shows that she doesn’t think the Biden administration could do something “if China acted against one of our citizens there.”
“It’s terrible. Just fathom for a moment what Nancy Pelosi just said, though, Maria. Think about this. She’s scared of offending a genocidal authoritarian communist government. She has no problem if our athletes go to China or go to the Olympics and protest America,” Collins told Fox Business’s “Mornings with Maria Bartiromo.”
“She’s actually telling our athletes, ‘don’t offend the big, bad Chinese government. We’re scared of them. We don’t want to offend them,’ and yet ignoring everything that China’s doing,” Collins continued.
“We shouldn’t be there to start with in the first place, but really that to me was the most cowardly act I’ve ever seen from a speaker to say, ‘don’t offend somebody like China because we are scared of them,’” he said.
Bartiromo asked why U.S. athletes are even in China if we’re afraid of the Chinese doing something against a U.S. citizen who speaks critically of the Communist Chinese Party.
“Well, it is outrageous, and I think what Pelosi’s statement indicates even further, she doesn’t believe the Biden administration could do if something happened. Let’s just be honest here,” the congressman noted.
“She’s implying that the Biden administration and the full force of the American power could not do something if China acted against one of our citizens there. Again, there’s so many things wrong with this Olympics being in China,” said Collins.
“The place where they are doing most of the events gets less snow than I get in north Georgia. Since when does the Winter OIympics go to somehere where there’s no snow? It just shows the whole problem with this in China,” he added.