It’s the race of the century: who will dominate as the economic and innovation leader of the 21st century? Will it be the U.S. or China? Back in 1978, America was top of the pile, producing four times more steel than China and making more cars than its competitor. But fast forward to today, and the tables have flipped. China now produces a whopping 12 times more steel than America and is the world’s biggest carmaker. China’s leaders are determined to overtake the U.S. completely, leading the world in terms of “comprehensive national power and international influence,” according to Chinese Communist Party General Secretary Xi Jinping.

China’s winning streak doesn’t end there. Shockingly, China now leads in 37 out of 44 technologies that are considered vital for our future, such as nanoscale manufacturing, 5G, and drone tech, according to the Australian Strategic Policy Institute. The writing is on the wall: if America doesn’t up its game, it risks being left in the dust.

Thankfully, America’s biggest strength has always been its people. From those who were born and raised here to those who came seeking the American dream, we’ve always been known for our hard work, ambition, and innovation. It’s time to make sure our people are better prepared to lead and innovate, attracting the best and brightest from around the world.

But we can’t rely on people power alone. The impact of supply chains abroad on working families has been felt hard over the past few years. It’s now more important than ever to harden our supply chains by producing more goods in the U.S. Finally, we need to pursue strong partnerships. Whether it’s with other nations or between our public and private sectors, working together is vital to fuel innovation. Let’s lead the world in AI, quantum computing, and biological tech and keep America firmly in first place. These matters need to be pressing priorities for our entire country. We cannot afford to wait.
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