“Our first presupposition was it is completely inappropriate for these games to be held in Beijing in 2022, not only because of the genocide determination that I made in the very closing days of the administration, but [also] more broadly … we don’t want to reward Chinese propaganda and [give] the Chinese an opportunity to tell the world that this model, this model of governance, this model of seeking hegemony around the world, is the right one,” he said in an interview with the Washington Examiner.
Pompeo, who said that allowing China to host the 24th Winter Olympic Games would revert the mistake of letting Berlin host the 1936 summer competition at the height of Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler's power, claimed that President Biden should deny the U.S. athletic delegation from Beijing if the IOC does not find a suitable alternative host.
“If that means boycotting; if that means nations don’t show up, I regret that for the athletes, but so be it,” he added.
Pompeo joined GOP members of Congress with his support for a U.S. Olympic boycott. Rep. Michael Waltz, a Republican from Florida, also called for a boycott in an op-ed published in the Washington Examiner on Feb. 15.
"Let’s be clear, this is an act of last resort, but the IOC is unfortunately demonstrating that it has been corrupted by Communist Party money like many other international organizations," he wrote. "I hope this serves as a first step for the government to join the 180 human rights groups calling for a boycott and to keep the U.S. at the forefront of advocating for human rights around the world."
Like Pompeo, Waltz referred to history, noting that President Jimmy Carter led a Western boycott of the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow in response to the Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan.
Despite finding fields of compliance with his successor, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Pompeo, a potential 2024 presidential candidate, has been a fierce critic of Biden's China policy.
"This is some of the most horrific human activity that we have seen since the last century, and the administration has a responsibility ... to convince the Chinese Communist Party not to behave in this way [and] to impose costs on them when they don't," Pompeo said about Biden's refusal to condemn the genocide of Uyghur Muslims in China, adding that the president's rhetoric was "disheartening."
Trump is set to address at the Conservative Political Action Conference on Sunday, marking his first statements to an assembled audience since he left the White House.