House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's on-again, off-again plan to visit Taiwan is not only "curious," according to Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., on Newsmax, but he considers "stirring this pot" untimely.
"I wish that the speaker — and she can go wherever she wants — but there are huge global implications of this, and it's curious to me that at this moment in time," Warner told Wednesday's "The Record With Greta Van Susteren."
"Stirring this pot would not have been the way I would approach it, but again as your earlier reporting said, who knows whether she's going or not."
Warner was not asked about Pelosi's husband Paul reportedly investing $1 million to $5 million in semiconductor company Nvidia before Congress' vote for $280 billion bill that includes subsidies for the industry in the U.S., but he did note Taiwan and China's vested interest in dominating the world's semiconductor production, along with China's designs on securing its influence over Taiwan.
"We need to stand by Taiwan, and I support continuing to sell arms to Taiwan and doing all we can to build up enough defense for Taiwan, so that should President Xi [Jinping] try to take over Taiwan the same way [Russia's Vladimir] Putin is taking over Ukraine that there will be a huge, huge price to pay," Warner told Van Susteren.
Warner noted the U.S. had manufactured 40% of world's chips in the 1990s, but the U.S. is now down to 12%.
"Most of the advanced semiconductors in the world — not just for America — are built in Taiwan, and as we see the political activity and President Xi threatened Taiwan more and more, if Xi were to try to shut down the production from Taiwan or stop the flow of chips — whether to America or elsewhere — it would create a global depression."
Warner called the $280 billion chips bill passing the Senate "long overdue."
"The fact is, if we had not passed this — the bill doesn't get to the president's desk — there would never be another semiconductor facility built in America, because every other nation is trying to lure these huge manufacturing facilities to their country," Warner said.
"Matter of fact, we passed it in the Senate originally a year ago, and in that year, even the Europeans have woken up, and Germany France have attracted American companies because they provided these incentives," Warner added. "It's time for America to get back in the game, and this will be about jobs. It's about security. It actually longer term will be about inflation, because one of the reasons we're seeing this incredibly high inflation."
Warner noted the car industry has built cars that he said are sitting in "parking lots outside of factories in Michigan and Ohio" because of a lack of semiconductor chips.
"What they lack is a semiconductor chip," he said. "Having that American supply chain will be very important."
Warner noted China, Taiwan and South Korea have surpassed America in the dominance of the chip industry because of government subsidies the U.S. now has to keep up with.
"The reason is China put $100 billion into incentives to bring in those factories to China," Warner said. "Taiwan spent enormous amounts of money. South Korea spent $65 billion.
"When the rest of the world has these incentive in place, these global companies are going to go where they can, you know, to make these $10-$30 billion facility investments pay off.
"So we're joining this world competition."
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