WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Congressmen Dave Joyce (OH-14) and Jake Auchincloss (MA-04) recently introduced the Securing Our Airspace from Reconnaissance (SOAR) Act to prevent the federal, state, and local governments from using taxpayer dollars to purchase drones manufactured in hostile nations like Communist China.
“Drones made by companies owned by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) are effectively China’s modern-day Trojan Horse, yet federal agencies and countless state and local governments continue to purchase them,” said Congressman Joyce. “The SOAR Act will ban the use of these foreign-made drones and encourage the production of American-made alternatives, protecting Americans’ data and promoting domestic innovation. I will continue to work in a bipartisan manner to confront the grave security threat posed by countries like China.”
“Foreign-made drones, particularly those made under the CCP’s regime, are a threat to our national security. They allow foreign companies to access and control sensitive data, including information about critical infrastructure and law enforcement activities. The SOAR Act will eliminate that vulnerability and instead spur U.S. manufacturing for drones,” said Congressman Auchincloss.
“This long-overdue legislation places penalties on those companies that produce spy balloons for the Chinese, prohibiting these companies from contracting with the US government. China cannot act against American interests with impunity. As for foreign companies, the message is clear: you can build Chinese spy balloons or do business with the US government; you can’t do both,” said FDD Action, who has endorsed the legislation.
Specifically, the SOAR Act would:
- Implement a comprehensive ban for federal agencies, and state and local governments, from using American tax dollars to purchase drones manufactured by entities with ties to countries of concern, including Communist China.
- Increase oversight on agency heads that request a waiver for this ban, requiring Congress to be notified whenever a waiver is requested and requiring that these waivers be renewed annually.
- Direct the Secretary of Defense to expand existing partnerships with the private sector to promote domestic production of secure, American-made drones.
Original cosponsors of the SOAR Act include: Rep. Lance Gooden (TX-5) and Rep. Max Miller (OH-7).