Senator Tom Cotton (R-AZ) went after Paul Lalli, Coca-Cola’s Global Vice President for Human Rights, for refusing to condemn the Chinese Communist Party’s genocide against the Uyghur people. A brief transcript of the tense exchange below:
SEN. TOM COTTON (R-AR): So your company said at the time that we will continue to stand up for what is right in Georgia and across the United States. So are we to take from your that statement at the time that Coca Cola will not stand up for what is right outside the United States? Because that’s what it sounds like this morning in this testimony.
PAUL LALLI, COCA-COLA’S GLOBAL VICE PRESIDENT FOR HUMAN RIGHTS: No, Senator, we stand up for what is right across the world. We apply the same human rights principles in the United States that we do across the world.
COTTON: Do you believe that the Chinese Communist Party is committing genocide against the Uyghur people?
LALLI: We’re aware of the reports of the State Department on this issue as well. There are other departments of the U.S. government. We respect those reports. They continue to inform our program, as do reports from other from civil society.
Cotton is pushing Coke to drop their sponsorship of the 2022 winter Olympic Games in Beijing. But Coke really, really likes money. Coca-Cola is currently investing more than $4 billion in China for future growth and has 18 bottling plants in the country.
They won’t be condemning the CCP anytime soon.