Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA) has awarded certificates of congressional recognition to at least 10 members of alleged Chinese Communist Party (CCP) intelligence front groups, many of whom donated to her political campaigns, an investigation by the Daily Caller indicated.
The congresswoman has handed out these honors to people who hold positions in organizations linked to the United Front Work Department, a CCP agency that works to project the party’s influence overseas.
In one instance in 2018, Chu gave one of the congressional certificates to the Chinese American mayor of a city in her district. Stephen Sham, then the mayor of Alhambra, California, had previously donated $10,975 to Chu over a seven-year timeframe that partly coincides with the period that he was a “director” of the China Overseas Exchange Association.
Experts have told the Daily Caller that UFWD-linked organizations – particularly the COEA and the related China Overseas Friendship Association (COFA) – aim to shape public opinion abroad and sway Western elites toward actions favorable to China.
A July 2022 report from the Director of National Intelligence warned of China accruing financial leverage over political leaders through campaign contributions or promised investments.
Chu also gave a certificate of congressional recognition to Zhang Sujiu, the daughter of a deceased CCP general. Sujiu had also previously served director roles in the COEA for six years.
Ina Mitchell, co-author of a new book on the CCP called “The Mosaic Effect,” told the outlet that there are “thousands and thousands” of groups linked to UFWD. Their influence operations can “be as simple as campaign contributions to Western politicians” with the hope that they will implement CCP-aligned policies.
A previous Daily Caller investigation recently indicated that Chu herself has been appointed “honorary chairwoman” of a CCP-linked group aiming to reunify China and Taiwan, a key goal of the Chinese government.
The congresswoman also voted against the formation of the new House select committee on China, saying in a statement that its work risks “intensifying anti-Asian hate here in the United States.”