U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn Helps Introduce Bill That Would Reveal Foreign Investments into American Universities

U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) joined U.S. Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) this week in introducing the Defending Education Transparency and Ending Rogue Regimes Engaging in Nefarious Transactions (DETERRENT) Act.

The bill, according to Blackburn’s office, would “bring much needed transparency, accountability, and clarity to foreign gift reporting requirements for American colleges and universities.”

Specifically, the bill would lower the foreign gift reporting threshold for colleges and universities from $250,000 down to $50,000 and impose a $0 threshold for countries of concern.

The bill would also require disclosure of foreign gifts to individual staff and faculty at research-heavy institutions, which Blackburn’s office said will “protect those targeted the most by our adversaries.”

“While our adversaries pick up the pace in their malign influence campaigns, we must do everything we can to protect our citizens,” Blackburn said in a statement. “As long as there are relaxed rules for reporting foreign gifts and money in our academic institutions, Communist China and the New Axis of Evil will exploit it as an avenue to influence and infiltrate American education. This legislation is a critically important component of loosening the grip that bad actors have on our universities.”

Blackburn also said the bill will “hold our largest private institutions accountable for their financial partnerships by revealing concerning foreign investments in their endowments” and “implement a series of repercussions for colleges and universities that remain noncompliant in foreign gift reporting such as fines and the loss of Title IV funding.”

The bill comes as a Senate report from 2019 found that up to 70 percent of all institutions failed to comply with section 117 of the Higher Education Act, which is the single biggest enforcement tool to protect against the threats posed by foreign adversaries.

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Kaitlin Housler is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network. Follow Kaitlin on X / Twitter.
Photo “Marsha Blackburn” by Marsha Blackburn. 





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2 Thoughts to “U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn Helps Introduce Bill That Would Reveal Foreign Investments into American Universities”

  1. GregSchmitty

    Will this include dual Israeli/American citizens?

  2. Debbie

    Surely, she knows it isn’t going anywhere…..