GOP senator who wants to ban investments in Chinese companies owned stock in Chinese firm: financial disclosures

GOP senator who wants to ban investments in Chinese companies owned stock in Chinese firm: financial disclosures
US Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Alabama)

Newly-elected Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) is facing scrutiny amid reports about his ownership of stock in a Chinese company linked to the Chinese Communist Party.

According to Business Insider, Tuberville's financial disclosure statement has revealed he owned between $15,001 and $50,000 in Alibaba Group Holding Limited stock put options. Tuberville disclosed that the stock options had value of approximately $1,101 and $15,000.

In 2019, the Chinese government's app Xuexi Qiangguo was developed by Alibaba, according to Reuters. Jack Ma, who is credited as the founder of Alibaba and former chairman of the company, is also a member of the Chinese Communist Party.

Tthe latest report comes shortly after Tuberville introduced a bill to prohibit the investment of federal Thrift Savings Plan funds into Chinese companies.

"We've seen it time and again – Chinese companies don't play by the rules, committing intellectual property theft and disregarding basic regulatory standards at the expense of investors," Tuberville said at the time. "Not a single taxpayer dollar should be invested with these entities that have a clear history of corruption. Such investments put the investors, and our country, at risk. It is time to take a serious, united, and bipartisan approach to disentangle American financial investment with China and send the message that American capital will not support Chinese aggression."

To address the latest reports, Tuberville's spokesman Ryan DuRan released a statement to APR on Monday, June 28. According to DuRan, Tuberville's portfolio has financial advisors in place who have "actively manage his portfolio" for quite some time. He also claims the Republican senator sold the Alibaba stock sometime last year.

"In early 2020, upon becoming aware of the Alibaba investment, which was less than $5,000, he instructed his advisors to divest in the stock," DuRant said. "The candidate report reflects that divestment in that stock, which took place on June 1, 2020, and the recently filed personal financial disclosure reflects the capital gains generated from that divestment of the stock (which is reported on the disclosure)."

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