Kenneth Wollack, a Co-Chair of the Commission of Presidential Debates, participated in several “off-the-record” dialogues with Chinese Communist Party officials and influence groups, The National Pulse can exclusively reveal.
Wollack – also the Chairman of the publicly-funded National Endowment for Democracy (NED) board – was one of ten principal delegates for what was called the inaugural U.S.-China High-Level Political Party Leaders Dialogue, hosted by the EastWest Institute “in partnership” with the International Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.
The U.S. delegation was led by former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright, whose daughter Alice was recently tapped to run a key Biden-era foreign aid initiative despite her massive investments with the Chinese Communist Party.
“It seeks to build understanding and trust between political elites from the United States and China through an exchange of views on governance and foreign policy issues,” summarizes the think-tank.
The EastWest Institute, however, has a long track record of collaborating with premier Chinese influence groups including the China-United States Exchange Foundation (CUSEF).
The organization was founded by the Vice-Chairman Chinese Communist Party’s United Front Work Department, an effort that seeks to “co-opt and neutralize sources of potential opposition to the policies and authority of its ruling Chinese Communist Party” and “influence foreign governments to take actions or adopt positions supportive of Beijing’s preferred policies.”
CUSEF has also sponsored various U.S.-China High-Level Political Party Leaders Dialogue.
Given the EastWest Institute’s close ties to Beijing, Wollack’s delegation included “off-the-record” meetings with Chinese Communist Party leader Xi Jinping and senior officials in the regime’s controversial United Front Work Department.
“This visit marked the first time the dialogue process expanded beyond Beijing to include meetings in other regions of China, in an effort to promote a broader understanding between the two countries’ political elites,” explained the EastWest Institute.
In December 2012, Wollack joined another business-focused delegation, which the EastWest Institute summarized as focusing on “how to expand trade ties between China and the United States, particularly at the provincial and state levels.”
Wollack joined the fifth U.S.-China High-Level Political Party Leaders Dialogue during his tenure as President of the National Democratic Institute, which was also identified as a Hosting Partner of the dialogue.
“Luncheon presentation on the U.S. political landscape by Geoffrey Garin, president of Hart Research Associates, and Neil Newhouse, partner and co-founder of Public Opinion Strategies, hosted by the National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute,” explains an EastWest Institute event description.
The unearthed Chinese Communist Party link to the U.S. Presidential Debate Commission follows The National Pulse identifying other board members as belonging to think-tanks with histories of collaborating with Beijing-backed influence groups.
The news comes as the Republican National Committee weighs the benefits of taking part in the next set of Presidential debates at all, given the so-called “non-partisan” entity’s proclivity for tilting the topics in favor of Democrats, and indeed hiding conflicts of interest from the viewing audience.
In 2020, debate moderator Steve Scully was caught lying when tweeting negatively about one of the one-stage candidates, Donald J. Trump. He then claimed his Twitter account had been hacked, before later admitting the whole thing was a fraud.
The third presidential debate between Trump and Biden was supposed to focus on foreign policy, but following the release of Hunter Biden’s hard drive, the Commission hastily altered the topics.