The U.S. House of Representatives unanimously approved a resolution to condemn China for the spy balloon the military shot down over the Atlantic ocean over the weekend.
The House unanimously approved a resolution (H. Res. 104) on Thursday — on a 419-0 margin — “condemning the Chinese Communist Party’s use of a high-altitude surveillance balloon over United States territory” and labeled the situation “a brazen violation of United States sovereignty.”
The resolution was voted on on the House floor five days after the United States military shot down the Chinese spy balloon over the weekend while it was over the Atlantic Ocean off the Carolina coast.
However, despite U.S. officials knowing about the balloon days before it was shot down, the news only broke after American civilians first discovered the spy balloon floating over their homes last Thursday. This ultimately intensified tensions between Washington and China days before President Joe Biden was set to give his State of the Union address.
South Carolina residents caught video footage of the spy balloon being shot out of the sky on Saturday by the United States military: @RealUSC via Storyful
“An event like this, Mr. Speaker, must not happen again. And it cannot go unanswered,” Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX), a sponsor of the resolution, said on the House floor. “They only understand one thing, and that is force, and that’s projecting power, and we need to project power and force and strength against the Chinese Communist Party.” McCaul said:
They must understand that we do desire peace, but infringing upon our sovereignty leads us down a dangerous path. Our adversaries must believe that any future incursion into American airspace by a spy balloon or any other vehicle will be met with decisive force. And that is why the House should pass this resolution.
The same day the resolution passed, a senior State Department official said that the intelligence indicated that the equipment on the Chinese spy balloon was “inconsistent” with what would be aboard a weather balloon, since it had “multiple antennas to include an array likely capable of collecting and geo-locating communications.”
The same person also claimed that the balloon was “part of a PRC (People’s Republic of China) fleet of balloons developed to conduct surveillance operations” with a manufacturer tied to China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and that the U.S. “will also explore taking action against PRC entities linked to the PLA that supported the balloon’s incursion into U.S. airspace.”
A recent Trafalgar Group poll conducted this week found that 63.4 percent think that “the crisis was mishandled” or “should have been dealt with sooner,” while only 36.6 percent think the Biden administration “appropriately” handled the situation.
Additionally, 58.8 percent agree that “Biden should have taken quicker action to shoot down the Chinese spy balloon before it even entered U.S. sovereign airspace,” and 59.2 percent also feel that Biden’s handling of the Chinese spy balloon made “America look weak” on the world stage.