As the Georgia Senate runoff election fast approaches, questions continue about Democratic Senate candidate Jon Ossoff’s views on and connections to communist China.
In 2012, Ossoff used his Twitter to promote the CCP-controlled media, Xinhua News Agency, which has repeatedly denied human rights violations against the Uyghur people and spoken out against the Hong Kong democracy protests. In his tweet, Ossoff suggested people follow the propaganda outlet for information about China’s political affairs.
“Esp. during 18th Party Congress, #follow @XHNews (Xinhua – Chinese state media). #ff,” he wrote.
— Jon Ossoff (@ossoff) November 8, 2012
Ossoff’s tweet came just a few months after he left his position as a “national security aide” with top-secret clearance under Georgia Democratic Rep. Hank Johnson, a clearance level that he has repeatedly falsely claimed in campaign ads that he maintained for five years instead of five months.
Less than a year after his first pro-Chinese propaganda tweet, Ossoff shared a post detailing the Chinese People’s Liberation Army’s dietary and financial cutbacks.
“‘China’s current spirit of antiextravagance’ RT @XHNews: Military emphasizes frugality with new food rules,” he wrote.
— Jon Ossoff (@ossoff) February 20, 2013
In addition to his blatant amplification of communist China’s agenda through his Twitter account, Ossoff has also come under fire for failing to disclose payments he received from the PCCW Media company and its chairman, Richard Li, who strongly opposes Hong Kong’s quest for independence, for a documentary produced by Ossoff’s company. Ossoff originally claimed it was a “paperwork error” and eventually amended his financial disclosure to include the payment. Shortly after, however, Ossoff claimed that the payment, which was reportedly about $950, wasn’t required to be disclosed because it wasn’t over the $5,000 threshold.
It wasn’t until after the failed disclosure scandal that Ossoff expressed support for Hong Kong’s pro-democracy campaign. “Jon strongly supports Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement and condemns the brutality and authoritarianism of the Chinese Communist Party,” a representative for Ossoff said, declining to answer further.
Ossoff’s shady China connections have been likened to those of California Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell, who became politically and potentially personally involved with Chinese spy Christine Fang, who cultivated deep connections with U.S. Democratic politicians in the Bay Area for years to send political intelligence and personal information back to China’s Ministry of State Security, one of the country’s primary spying agencies.
Others have called for further transparency from Ossoff about his Chinese connections, some of which were amplified by his opponent, Republican Sen. David Perdue. Instead of condemning the CCP or its actions, Ossoff has turned the tables on Perdue, claiming that he is trying to “lie himself out of a losing campaign, especially when he is the one with deep ties to China.”