Attorney General William P. Barr said Wednesday that China poses a bigger threat to the 2020 presidential election than Russia.
“In my opinion, it’s China. And not just to the election process, but I think across the board there is simply no comparison. China is a very serious threat to the United States geopolitically, economically, militarily and a threat to our institutions given their ability to influence things,” he said in an interview with Fox News.
Mr. Barr’s comments come as the United States battles the deadly coronavirus that started in China before spreading across the globe. The Trump administrations in others have accused China of downplaying the virus.
The attorney general said the Justice Department is working to crackdown on Chinese intellectual property theft. Companies across the United States have complained that the secrets to their top technology have been pilfered by Chinese spies.
He said some companies that do work in China are seeking a short-term economic gain at the expense of national security.
“A lot of American businesses just for short-term profit … they know over the long run it’s not going to be a long-term benefit to their business, but just for short-term gain they are perhaps not doing what is necessary in the long-term interest of the United States,” Mr. Barr said.