Nike, Coca-Cola, and Apple are just some of the high-profile companies lobbying Congress to reduce limitations on a bill combating forced labor in Xinjiang. 

The Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act would ban imports created by forced labor in the Chinese region in an effort to reduce the horrific persecution of the Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang. It would ban imports “in whole or in part” from the region, unless it could be proven the items were not the product of this slavery. 

The legislation is widely supported by both parties, passing the House by a vote of 406 to 3. Once it passes Congress, it could be signed into law by either President Donald Trump or President-elect Joe Biden. 

This seems like a platform we should all be able to get behind. How could any company be against limiting forced labor in China? Well, companies like Apple, Nike, Adidas, Calvin Klein, Campbell Soup Company, Costco, H&M, Patagonia, Tommy Hilfiger, Coca-Cola and others reportedly take advantage of the practice for their financial gain.

According to the New York Times:

Disclosure forms show that Apple paid Fierce Government Relations, a firm led by former staff aides to Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and President George W. Bush, $90,000 to lobby on issues including Xinjiang-related legislation in the third quarter. 

Nike has also reportedly paid over $400,000 to lobbyists about this act. However, when asked about whether or not they use materials from Xinjiang, the company claims they don’t. According to a report published in March by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, this isn’t true. They claim a factory, which employed around 800 Uyghur workers at the end of 2019, produced more than seven million pairs of shoes for Nike annually

Coca-Cola has also denied any ties to this horrific practice, citing the use of auditors to make certain they were avoiding forced labor. However, auditing in China is complicated, because of government censorship so the results of audits are not necessarily trustworthy.

Some companies ridiculously limit business in pro-life areas of America, citing “human rights issues.”  Of course, this has always been a farce. 

If these businesses really cared about human rights, they’d support this legislation and move jobs to America. 


Hat Tip: The New York Times

Image Credit: PH Free Images

About The Author

Mark was a co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, and served as the national coordinator. He left the organization to work more broadly on expanding the self-governance movement beyond the partisan divide. Mark appears regularly on television in outlets as diverse as MSNBC, ABC, NBC, Fox News, CNN, Bloomberg, Fox Business and the BBC. He’s highly sought after for the tea party perspective from print and electronic media outlets, from the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, L.A. Times, Washington Examiner, Politico and the The Hill. Mark blogs at MarkMeckler.com, and his opinion editorials regularly run in many of the leading political newspapers both on and offline. Mark has a BA in English from San Diego State University and graduated with honors from University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law in 1988. He practiced real estate and business law for almost a decade. For the last eleven years of his legal career he specialized in Internet advertising law. When not fighting for the future of our nation, Mark is an avid horseman, and lives in rural northern California with his wife Patty and two children.

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