WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senators Bob Menendez (D-NJ), co-chair of the Senate Taiwan Caucus and senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Marco Rubio (R-FL), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and Senate Select Committee on Intelligence today introduced a concurrent resolution reaffirming the Taiwan Relations Act and the “Six Assurances” as cornerstones of United States–Taiwan relations. Senators Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Sherrod Brown (R-OH), and Cory Gardner (R-CO) are original cosponsors of the resolution.
“I am pleased to join my colleagues in introducing this resolution to not only reaffirm the importance of our strong bilateral relations with Taiwan, but to underscore the Senate’s unwavering support of the Taiwan Relations Act as an enduring expression to the people of Taiwan about our commitment to their well-being,” said Menendez. “Thirty-seven years after the TRA was first implemented and as historic progress continues to be made to improve the China-Taiwan relations, we must ensure that Taiwan remains both a close friend to the U.S. and a beacon of democracy and freedom in the Asia-Pacific region.”
“The relationship between the United States and Taiwan grows stronger and stronger as each year passes,” said Rubio. “We have stood with Taiwan in the face of tyranny and watched as its people overcame fear to live in peace. The ‘Six Assurances’ that President Reagan put in place over thirty-four years ago are as valid today as they were in 1982. I look forward to continuing to work with Taiwan and I am proud to introduce this bipartisan resolution that reasserts the United States’ commitment to Taiwan for years to come. The introduction of this resolution is especially timely because tomorrow we join with the people of Taiwan in celebrating the inauguration of Dr. Tsai-Ing-wen as Taiwan’s President. Another peaceful transfer of power in Taiwan is just the latest symbol of what an open, vibrant society Taiwan has become. Taiwan continues to serve as a model of the possibility for Chinese culture and democracy to coexist and flourish. I want to thank outgoing President Ma Ying-jeou for his tireless service on behalf of the Taiwanese people. I look forward to working with Dr. Tsai Ing-wen in the coming years to deepen the relationship between Taiwan and the United States and take it to new levels. We must be watchful in the coming weeks and months for any attempts by Beijing to subvert Taiwan’s triumph of democracy to advance its own agenda. That is why it is important that we speak with one voice as a Congress to reaffirm the importance of the ‘Six Assurances’ to our relationship for the years to come."
Taiwan is a close ally of the of the United States and shares common ideals of freedom, democracy and self-determination. For too long, Taiwan has faced an increasing threat from China. Recent media reports indicate that China is staging large-scale joint war games along its east coast facing Taiwan, in the days leading up to the presidential inauguration of Dr. Tsai Ing-wen. The Taiwan Relations Act has served as institutional framework and legal basis for continued communication between the U.S. and Taiwan. For over thirty-seven years, the Taiwan Relations Act has provided a foundation for peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and in the Asia-Pacific region.
When President Reagan agreed to sign the U.S.-China “Third Shanghai Communiqué” in 1982, he feared it would send the wrong message to Taiwan. In order to reinforce America’s partnership with Taiwan, the United States issued the “Six Assurances,” which established guidance for maintaining an unfaltering relationship with Taiwan.
Representative Steve Chabot (R-OH-01) introduced a companion concurrent resolution (H. Con. Res. 88) in the House which passed by voice vote on Monday.