On December 23, 2019 founding member of the Congressional Taiwan Caucus and long-time Taiwan supporter, Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH) and House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee Chairman for Asia and the Pacific, Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA) introduced legislation calling for Senate confirmation of the Director of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT).

The bill concludes: “Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the President shall appoint, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, an individual to serve as the Director of the American Institute in Taiwan.”

The Taiwan Relations Act mandates that the “appropriate committees of Congress shall monitor … the operations and procedures of the Institute.”

The bill adds: “The Director of the American Institute in Taiwan shall have the rank and status of Ambassador at Large.”

FAPA President Mike Kuo states: “The current AIT Director, the U.S. de facto Ambassador to Taiwan, is appointed by the Secretary of State without checks and balances by Congress. Taiwanese Americans would like to see that the AIT Director is confirmed by the Senate for the following reason: “Congress has the right to oversee US-Taiwan relations through such a confirmation process.”

Dr. Kuo adds: “Moreover, the AIT Director acts, talks and walks like an ambassador. That is why it is all the more appropriate that he or she is confirmed by the Senate. And finally, this is not someone the State Department sends to the Caribbean. The Taiwan Strait is still one of the flashpoints in the world. It behooves the Senate to vet this prospective AIT Director to the maximum.”

2019年12月23日,美國國會台灣連線創始成員暨台灣長期支持者眾議員夏波(Steve Chabot,R-OH)以及眾議院外交委員會亞太事務小組主席薛爾曼(Brad Sherman,D-CA)提出法案,要求美國在台協會處長之任命須經參議院同意。

該法案結論:「儘管有其他法律規定,總統仍應在取得參議院的意見和同意後,任命美國在台協會處長。」

此外,《台灣關係法》亦規定,「國會適當之委員會應監督 . . . 該協會的作業及程序。」

該法律草案補充說:「美國在台協會處長應具有無任所大使的等級與地位。」

台灣人公共事務會(FAPA)會長郭正光表示:「美國在台協會處長是美國派駐台灣的事實上大使,目前在缺乏國會的制衡下由國務卿任命。台裔美國人希望看到AIT處長之任命經過參議院的同意,其原因如下:國會有權透過這種同意程序來監督美台關係。」

郭會長補充說:「此外,AIT處長的一舉一動都像個大使。這也就是為什麼由參議院同意他或她的任命更為恰當。最後,這不是國務院派往加勒比地區的人。台灣海峽仍然是世界上的戰爭導火線之一。參議院理應在最大程度內檢視這位潛在的AIT處長。」

LEGISLATION INTRODUCED IN HOUSE SEEKING SENATE CONFIRMATION OF AIT DIRECTOR / 眾議院提案要求美國在台協會處長之任命須經參議院同意