Latest News 25-06-2024 22:04 13 Views

Biden appointee played key role in recruiting Chinese businesses to Delaware: ‘Longtime friends’

A Biden appointee, who has donated tens of thousands of dollars to his campaigns and is married to a top former aide of then-Sen. Biden, has played an instrumental role in recruiting Chinese businesses to Delaware.

Michael Marquardt, who Biden appointed in 2022 to the U.S. Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad, has spent the last two decades advising international companies and in recent years helping the Delaware Prosperity Partnership (DPP) recruit Chinese businesses to invest in Delaware.

Marquardt, who has served as a 'global advisor' of DPP since 2017, has used his social media accounts to highlight his work in introducing Chinese business leaders and Chinese companies to Delaware. 

'Today we welcomed more than 50 of the Chinese business executives to The First State, a visit planned and sponsored by Bank of China,' Marquardt wrote in a 2015 Facebook post. 'After a program highlighting the benefits and advantages of Delaware as a ‘gateway to America’ we toured one of the country's fastest growing companies – Incyte Corporation. Our visitors were very impressed. Delaware is the only State they are visiting other than New York City and Washington DC (for sightseeing).'

A day earlier, Marquardt posted on his Facebook profile from New York City about then-Delaware Gov. Jack Markell, a Biden ally, being presented 'with the International Leadership Award from China's General Chamber of Commerce at Bank of China's new US headquarters building in Manhattan at 7 Bryant Park.'

'The building is actually not yet finished and it was amazing to see it before it officially opens,' Marquardt continued. 'This ceremony concluded a day of business matching sessions between 100+ Chinese companies and 100+ American companies, including 21 from Delaware.'

That same year, Marquardt posted on Facebook an article touting Delaware funding for 'the expansion of a China summer abroad program for high school students studying Mandarin.' He also posted the Twitter hashtag '#ForwardThinkingDelaware.'

'And today we welcomed 2 buses w/Chinese business execs to @DelawareGlobal to learn more about the First State,' Marquardt posted on X in 2015 along with a photo of buses presumably rolling into Delaware with Chinese business executives on board.

In 2016, the final year of the Obama-Biden administration, Marquardt posted on his Facebook about being in attendance at a 'very special event' in New York City 'celebrating the strengthening business ties between China and the United States.' 

'Global Delaware front and center once again!' he added.

According to the photos Marquardt posted, he was at the China-U.S. Economic and Trade Cooperation Conference, which included keynote remarks from Hu Chunhua, who at the time was a member of the powerful political bureau of the CPC Central Committee and party secretary of the Guangdong Province. 

Chunhua is currently vice-chairperson of the 14th CPPCC National Committee, a 'central part' of China’s United Front system, which works to 'co-opt and neutralize sources of potential opposition to the policies and authority of its ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP),' according to a 2018 report by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission.

Later that year, Marquardt traveled to Washington, D.C., for the closing ceremony of China-U.S. Tourism Year 2016, according to an X post from Andrea Tinianow, who started Global Delaware, a Delaware Department of State initiative created to 'help Delaware companies develop markets overseas, attract foreign companies to establish operations in Delaware, and strengthen Delaware’s role as leader in corporate governance.'

According to her Linkedin profile, she also served as the chief innovation officer and executive vice president of Global Kompass Strategies Inc., a 'globally respected consulting firm' founded by Marquardt. Marquardt was invited by China's General Chamber of Commerce (CGCC), a New York City-based group that has been praised by top CCP leaders in Beijing, to attend the luncheon for Vice Premier Wang Yang, one of the most powerful CCP leaders in China, according to a 2016 Facebook post.

The event featured several top Democrats, including former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and President Obama's ambassador to China, Max Baucus.

In a 2018 Facebook post, Marquardt posted photos from a 'follow-up meeting with the China Entrepreneur Club in Beijing' and called his meeting 'productive.' 

A 2014 BBC profile piece described the CEC as the 'richest club in China' that consists of '46 of China's top business leaders' and includes 'politicians, academics and other advisers,' including several billionaires. The group now has over 60 members, according to last year's annual report.

Its honorary club chairmen are Jack Ma, the founder of CCP-tied Alibaba that reportedly helped create surveillance technology used against Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang, and Liu Chuanzhi, who has held multiple top positions in the CCP, including deputy to the 16th and 17th National Congresses and deputy to the 9th, 10th and 11th National People's Congresses, the annual report noted.

In a 2019 social media post, Marquardt said he traveled to Washington, D.C., and 'enjoyed reconnecting with longtime friends' from CGCC and the Bank of China at the SelectUSA Summit representing DPP. SelectUSA is a 'federal government program housed within the U.S. Department of Commerce tasked with promoting and facilitating business investment into the United States.'

China has played a major role in Delaware's economy and was the recipient of $498 million in exported goods in 2023, according to the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition.

In 2022, CGCC published a post about their 'member companies' traveling to Wilmington, Delaware, to learn about 'Delaware’s economy through site visits and engagements with local government officials,' which included a 'presentation' by DPP's Marquardt and the group's president and CEO, Kurt Foreman.

'After the visit to DPP’s headquarters, members enjoyed a special welcoming dinner hosted by Governor John Carney at the historic Hotel du Pont in downtown Wilmington,' the post continued.

A 2023 Linkedin post profiles Marquardt and includes several quotes about his passion for working with foreign countries looking to invest in the United States, including him saying, 'It always amazes me when someone from another country knows so little about Delaware.'

He goes on to say Delaware is 'so incredibly welcoming while still moving at the pace that innovative companies require' and that he 'really enjoy[s] educating them on why so many businesses choose to come here.'

Marquardt’s ties to Biden go back over two decades when his wife, Claire DeMatteis, was serving as then-Sen. Biden’s senior counsel, a position she held from 1994 to 2004, a Fox News Digital review found. 

Last summer, Marquardt, who was originally from West Berlin, Germany, and immigrated to the United States in the early 1990s, posted a video of his wedding reception, which marked their 20th wedding anniversary and featured Biden giving a toast in 2003 in place of DeMatteis' dad, who passed away when she was 9 years old.

During the toast, Biden called Marquardt a 'fine man' and joked that he only questioned his association with Biden's brother-in-law, Jack Owens, who is married to his sister, Valerie Biden Owens. This reference appears to stem from Marquardt co-founding and serving as the CEO of Mediguide, a telemedicine company that Owens invested in during the early 2000s and would later purchase and manage, according to an archived bio on Mediguide's website. 

Fox News Digital previously reported on Owens reaching out to Hunter Biden, his nephew, to request help in obtaining a Chinese business license.

Marquardt, who served on the Biden for President national finance committee between 2019 and 2020, and his wife have also been prolific donors to Biden PACs and campaigns, ranging from the Senate to the presidential level. Between 2003 and 2024, the Delaware couple has donated over $50,000 supporting Biden's campaigns, according to FEC records.

Marquardt has posted several photos with Biden over the years on his social media accounts and his Linkedin profile, and has promoted his ties to him on his business website. His background picture on X, Facebook, and Linkedin features him and his wife with President Biden and former Presidents Obama and Clinton at a celebrity-studded New York City fundraiser earlier this year. He has also posted pictures with his wife at the White House during the Biden administration, including at a Christmas party and July 4th celebration. 

'I am a business advisor who is welcomed in boardrooms worldwide,' Marquardt's website reads next to a photo of him and Biden shortly after he announced his presidential run in 2019. 'As a trusted strategist who quickly gains an understanding of business culture and helps drive change from within, I specialize in advising American companies looking to expand to Europe or Asia and companies that are interested in entering the U.S. market.'

Fox News Digital reached out to Marquardt and the White House for comment, but did not receive a response.


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