The Chinese discount shopping app Temu aired three commercials during Sunday’s Super Bowl, encouraging Americans to “shop like a billionaire” at its website and disregard significant evidence that Temu profits from the Chinese Communist Party’s enslavement of tens of thousands of Uyghurs and other members of Turkic ethnic groups in East Turkistan.
Temu has launched an advertisement and promotion blitz directed at the American people, including “$15 million in coupons and other giveaways” and three Super Bowl ads, according to left-wing television channel CNN. While the amount Temu paid for the advertisement is not publicly known, CNN noted that anonymous sources estimated CBS was taking “a range of $6.5 million to $7 million per 30-second spot broadcast.”
The latest wave of advertisement its part of a billions-strong campaign that will likely mean the company’s promotional spending will reach nearly $3 billion in 2024, according to a Wall Street Journal estimate this week.
The Super Bowl ads airing on Sunday night featured CGI animations, similar to those used in popular children’s programming in America, of shoppers buying items at steep discounts on their phones, singing a catchy jingle.
Temu also employed the aid of San Franciso 49ers running back Christian McCaffrey, who appeared in an online video sharing his favorite Temu products.
Here’s a look at my Top Temu Picks.
Watch the big game, and grab a free gift from the Temu app on February 11.
Download the Temu app and search code “CMC” to unlockhttps://t.co/xztjj7x5Zt#temugameday #temubiggame #temutoppicks #temufreegift pic.twitter.com/vKqEIDhNcB
— Christian McCaffrey (@CMC_22) February 5, 2024
Temu’s prominent appearance at the Super Bowl prompted outrage among some Congressional Republicans, who highlighted the extreme risk to consumers that they are bankrolling slavery by shopping with Temu. Several lawmakers sent a letter to Paramount Global and CBS last week asking them to reconsider doing business with Temu.
“We have a committee in Congress called the House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party, and they’ve uncovered many reports of Temu being non-compliant with the laws that prohibit illicit products from entering the United States,” Rep. Carol Miller (R-WV) told Breitbart News Saturday this week. “So basically, CBS will be airing advertisements to sell products on Temu that are made with Uyghur-forced labor during this year’s Super Bowl. And, as I said, it’s unacceptable.”
Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO) – whose team, the Kansas City Chiefs, won the Super Bowl – published a statement in anticipation of the Temu Super Bowl ad reminding constitutents that “the products Temu offers are tied to slave labor” in East Turkistan and presents several other threats.
“Temu is the ‘sister-company’ of Pinduoduo, which operates in China and is known for facilitating trademark counterfeiting and copyright piracy,” Rep. Luetkemeyer wrote. “In 2021, two Pinduoduo employees died due to the company’s working conditions. Additionally, cybersecurity researchers and former Pinduoduo employees say the company spies on customers.”
The Congressman continued:
Pinduoduo shows unwavering loyalty to the CCP and its leader, Xi Jinping. At the urging of Xi, the company promised to donate its profits— much of which came from Americans— to government initiatives. In return, Pinduoduo’s shares jumped 22%. In its statement announcing the donation, Pinduoduo publicized its ongoing support of the government’s agenda, and the CCP has praised the company for its loyalty.
PDD is the parent company of both Temu and Pinduoduo, a massive Chinese e-commerce site that specializes in cheap, poor quality goods.
China is currently conducting a genocide of non-Han populations, the largest affected group being the Uyghurs, in East Turkistan, which it has rebranded under the colonialist name “Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region” (XUAR). Communist Party officials have imprisoned as many as 3 million people in concentration camps in the region, where survivors say they experienced humiliating violations such as being forced to worship dictator Xi Jinping, violating their Islamic faith by eating pork, and torture such as electroshock and gang rape.
Many reported being enslaved, a claim the Chinese government denied by claiming the concentration camps were “vocational and education training centers” for underprivileged minorities, and the slaves being shipped off to factories had just “graduated” from the centers.
International journalists and human rights researchers revealed that the Chinese government is allowing unknown online retailers to sell Uyghur slaves online in “batches of 50 to 100” people. Advertisements for Uyghur slaves appearing online and catalogued by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) in 2020 showed the use of bigoted caricatures of Uyghurs used to sell people.
The outrage in response to mounting awareness of the enslavement of Uyghurs in East Turkistan prompted Congress to pass the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA), which went into effect in June 2022 and bans the importing of products from East Turkistan unless the prospective importer can prove that the shipment does not include slavery-tainted products. The UFLPA does not apply to shipments worth less than $800, an exception known as de minimis.
Temu launched in September 2022 in the United States, three months after the UFLPA, and specializes in selling cheap clothing, household, and other products directly to the consumer. A report by the House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party published in June 2023, which concluded there was “an extremely high risk that Temu’s supply chains are contaminated with forced labor,” found that Temu “reported that no single product on its website was offered or sold at or greater than $800” at the time – meaning it has no obligation to comply to the anti-slavery law.
The report also discovered products on Temu actively advertising themselves as coming from “Xinjiang” and being made with “Xinjiang cotton.” Cotton is one of the industries in the region the Chinese Communist Party has flooded the most with slave labor, and most pervasively tainted global industry with slave-made products. An estimated 84 percent of Chinese cotton comes from East Turkistan, representing about one-fifth of the world’s cotton production.
Temu itself said in response to the House investigation that the UFLPA provisions “do not apply directly to Temu’s activities … because Temu is not the importer of record with respect to goods shipped to the United States.”
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