(CNSNews.com) - As a Chinese spy balloon drifts over the United States, there are growing concerns down below about companies with ties to Communist China buying property and exerting influence all over the USA.
And it's not just American farmland: "Chinese-backed private equity are buying up boarding schools, private schools, and secondary education all over Florida, New York, California, from what we can tell," Rep. Mike Waltz (R-Fla.), a member of the House Armed Services Committee, told "The Ingraham Angle" Thursday night.
"And many of them have junior ROTC programs. So this is a double win for the Chinese Communist Party. One, they're now putting Confucius Institutes basically into our elementary schools and high schools and having propaganda platforms to the next generation of America, including our military leaders going through the ROTC program.
"And they get to send their elites there, you know, at probably a reduced cost. So this is a double win for them.
"And, Laura, this is part of the broader assault of the Chinese Communist Party buying up America, whether it's our farmland, it's in our educational system. They have hundreds of thousands of students in our universities. Of course, we have seen the billions pouring into endowments, researchers in our labs that are stealing our I.T. We have got to wake up as a country."
Waltz said it's bad enough that future U.S. military officers are being influenced by "woke leftist teachers."
"But now we have Chinese-influenced schools as well producing the next generation of (U.S.) military leaders." Waltz said Congress needs to "put a spotlight on Chinese money across the board...and defund it and pull it back."
Host Laura Ingraham asked Waltz about the Chinese spy balloon spotted over Montana, where Malmstrom Air Force Base, with its nuclear strike force, is located.
According to the New York Times early Friday morning:
"The United States has detected what it says is a Chinese surveillance balloon that has been hovering over the northwestern United States, the Pentagon said on Thursday, a discovery that comes days before Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken’s visit to Beijing.
"President Biden has chosen, for now, not to shoot down the balloon after a recommendation from Pentagon officials that doing so would risk debris hitting people on the ground, according to a senior defense official who was not authorized to speak publicly.
"The decision to publicize the discovery appears to put China on notice ahead of Mr. Blinken’s Beijing visit — the first by an American secretary of state in six years — during which he is expected to meet with President Xi Jinping. The sudden appearance of the balloon is bound to raise already escalating tensions between the two powers.
"The official said that while it was not the first time China had sent spy balloons to the United States, this one has appeared to remain over the country for longer. Still, a senior administration official who spoke on condition of anonymity said the balloon did not pose a military or physical threat and added that it had limited value in collecting intelligence.
"Another defense official said the Pentagon did not think that the balloon added much value over what China could glean through satellite imagery."
Why is the balloon allowed to keep floating up there, Ingraham asked Waltz:
"Apparently, there was suggested to shoot it down, and the Pentagon has decided what they think this balloon is able to surveil isn't worth the potential civilian casualties from the debris and the collateral damage.
"But from what I can tell, it's over rural Montana or the Dakotas, not over downtown L.A. So I want to see that analysis," Waltz said.
"But Laura, this is part of the lack of pushback, the total lack of pushback, whether it's an assault on Taiwan, whether it's buzzing our planes, now they're overflying our nuclear sites, and they keep getting away with it because we let them. There's no consequences."
Waltz noted that Secretary Blinken is about to go to China -- "And I think it's going to be climate at the top of his list," Waltz said. "And the Chinese are cranking out solar panels powered by coal, and they're going to eat our lunch all day long because they know the administration is going to make concession after concession."
Chinese corn mill in North Dakota?
Earlier on Fox News, the mayor of Grand Forks, North Dakota said his city will block the construction of a Chinese-owned corn plant in Grand Forks, home to an Air Force base, even though a corn plant would bring jobs to the city:
"Well, I think, obviously, there's going to be economic benefits for something like a corn mill," Mayor Brandon Bochenski told Neil Cavuto on Thursday:
"And we went through a long review process. We finally got a letter from the Air Force just saying, this is considered a national security concern. And it was just time to say no, I mean, not in Grand Forks. So it was a long process.
"But I don't think, in the end, if that's a -- if that's a threat, it's not going to move forward."
The mayor said the corn mill would be located about a dozen miles from Grand Forks Air Force Base, "which is another important economic driver in the community."
"But, in the future, right now, what the city is going to do is, we're going to basically shut down their ability to connect to infrastructure and deny any building permits going forward.
"So, the federal government, through the CFIUS process, has allowed them to own the land. They legally own the land, but they're not going to be able to build anything on it."