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Washington, D.C. — Yesterday, The Hill ran an op-ed, authored by House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX), criticizing the Biden administration’s decision to increase flights from China to the United States as the Chinese Communist Party increasingly takes more Americans hostage. Chairman McCaul highlighted the case of Mark Swidan, a Texan held hostage by the CCP for more than a decade for a crime he never committed. 


The CCP is taking Americans hostage — Biden wants to send more

By Chairman Michael McCaul

The Hill

April 16, 2024


President Biden wants to send more Americans to China as the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is taking them hostage. The president’s decision to increase flights from the U.S. to China is irresponsible and recklessly gambles with American lives.

“President Biden is willing and eager to hold high-level meetings with CCP officials while Americans remain wrongfully detained in China — legitimizing the Communist Party’s hostage taking diplomacy while getting nothing in return

“Among the most horrific examples of the CCP’s arbitrary detentions is Mark Swidan, a Texan whom I have fought to have released. Mark was traveling through China when he was arrested suddenly in his hotel room for a crime he could not have done. In fact, he wasn’t even in China when the crime was committed. In spite of his innocence, he has been held in China for over a decade and sentenced to death. His health is failing, with no access to nutritious food or proper medical treatment. He has not spoken to his family in years.

“Every single American who travels to China could be detained like Mark Swidan. A sweeping set of CCP laws implemented between 2019-2023 encourage hostage-taking based on vague, open-ended provisions that can be used for any charge — even charges you have nothing to do with…

“Despite such obvious risks and growing hostilities in Beijing, the Biden administration announced on Feb. 27 the U.S. would allow Chinese airlines to increase flights to the U.S.—raising the weekly roundtrip flights to and from the United States from 35 to 50. The Biden administration should not reward the CCP’s dangerous — and oftentimes deadly — behavior.

“Unfortunately, this administration seems eager to appease the CCP — and other malign actors, like Russian President Vladimir Putin — instead of taking a strong stance to protect American lives.”

Read the full op-ed here.