On Thursday, Politico reported that the family of Rep. Mike McCaul (R-TX) owns shares in a Chinese tech company that he has called a threat to national security and a tool of the Communist Party's "dystopian" control — and that he is scrutinizing as the ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
"A periodic transaction report filed on April 20 in the name of Rep. Michael McCaul, who represents Texas’ 10th district and serves as ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, lists the purchase of $50,000-$100,000 worth of shares in Chinese tech behemoth Tencent Holdings in late February," reported Natasha Bertrand.
"An attorney for McCaul, Elliot Berke, said that the lawmaker is not the owner of the shares," continued the report. "'Congressman McCaul did not purchase any shares in China’s Tencent Holdings or any other Chinese company,' Berke said. 'Congressman McCaul’s wife has assets she solely owns and a third party manager made the purchase without her direction.' Members of the House are required to disclose certain information concerning spousal assets under congressional ethics rules."
The stocks do not create the appearance of inside trading, because McCaul has criticized the company.
However, Bertrand wrote, "the disclosures threaten to become yet another political weapon in the race between Democrats and Republicans to distance themselves from the Chinese government, which has become radioactive amid a global pandemic that began in China and has claimed more than 70,000 American lives: McCaul was selected on Thursday by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to chair a new China Task Force that will aim to 'take bold action to address the [Chinese Communist Party’s] malign agenda and better compete with China on the world stage.'"