Intel’s Stumble is Very Bad for America
By U.S. Senator Marco Rubio
August 4, 2020
America used to dominate the semiconductor industry, but that leadership position is increasingly fragile. There are two parallel forces at work: the rise of our competitors and the decline of our domestic champions.
California-based chipmaker Intel Corp recently identified a “defect” in its next-generation 7-nanometer chip. Industry analysts call it a “stunning failure” that “leaves a large hole for its main competition to step into.”
This isn’t a story of one company failing and thus allowing another to succeed — it is a story of America’s competitiveness in a critical 21st-century industry being placed in jeopardy because we are losing our capacity to make things. We saw this vulnerability earlier this year when we could not produce simple personal protective equipment to combat the coronavirus pandemic.
The truth is that we are already far too reliant on international manufacturing for advanced digital semiconductors critical to American economic and national security. Intel’s stumble threatens to make things worse as the company considers outsourcing the production of its 7-nanometer chips. As Bloomberg reported, this “endangers one of the last bastions of U.S. technology leadership.”
America is not destined to fall; in fact, it is in our DNA to succeed. But future success requires decisive federal leadership, and we cannot afford to wait much longer.
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