As many CFIUS-watchers were expecting, the President has just blocked the Lattice Semiconductor/Canyon Bridge deal. CFIUS recommended that the President take this action because of national security concerns, and no President has refused to follow such a blocking recommendation by CFIUS.
In most cases, where CFIUS has made such a recommendation, the parties have abandoned the deal rather than waiting for the President to act. This is only the fourth time that parties to a deal have forced presidential action: at the recommendation of CFIUS, President George HW Bush ordered a divestment in 1990, President Obama ordered a divestment in 2012 and blocked a deal in 2016, and President Trump now has blocked this Lattice Semiconductor/Canyon Bridge deal. All cases have involved Chinese companies. (Steptoe has previously written on the 2012 and 2016 actions.) Continue Reading