China’s currency manipulation has reduced American exports, caused the loss of U.S. manufacturing jobs, and significantly contributed to our large trade deficit with China. The Chinese government has intervened in world markets, causing its currency to be undervalued by an estimated 28.5%. This unfair trade practice translates into a significant subsidy, artificially making Chinese imports into the United States much cheaper and U.S. exports to China much more expensive, jeopardizing efforts to create and preserve manufacturing jobs in America. As Leader Pelosi explains in a YouTube town hall video, 20 years ago our trade deficit with China was $5 billion a year and today it is $5 billion a week–”this is the least we can do in fairness to the American worker and to end the exploitation of our trade relationship”:
The bottom line: American workers are losing their jobs because China manipulates its currency and if we passed legislation to level the playing field for American workers and create jobs by holding countries accountable that create an unfair trade advantage by manipulating their currency, we could help create an estimated 1 to 1.5 million jobs here in America.
Last year, 99 House Republicans joined 249 House Democrats to overwhelmingly pass the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act by a vote of 348-79 but the Senate didn’t act on the legislation. This year, House Democrats re-introduced the legislation and it now has 225 co-sponsors, including 61 Republicans. Because it’s been eight months since House Democrats re-introduced the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act (H.R. 639) with no action from the Republican-controlled House, House Democrats led by Rep. Critz (D-PA) are collecting signatures on a discharge petition to force a vote on the bill. As of this afternoon, there are 176 Members who have signed, including 1 Republican, Rep. Harold Rogers–the Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee.
This week, the Senate is moving bipartisan legislation on currency manipulation:
AP – Senate Bill Punishes China Over Undervalued Money
The Senate on Monday weighed whether to punish China for undervaluing its currency and taking away American jobs…
The bill has bipartisan backing and on a 79-19 vote easily achieved the 60 votes needed to move it to the Senate floor. But the legislation faces considerable hurdles before it becomes law.
It’s long overdue for House Republican leaders to join the Senate and a majority of House Members and support the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act. But in keeping with their “No Jobs” agenda, Speaker Boehner and GOP leaders in the House are still refusing to bring this legislation to the floor for a vote (with Speaker Boehner even going so far as to claim “it’s “pretty dangerous” for Congress to crack down on Chinese currency manipulation”). But as Speaker Boehner’s home state paper points out, as millions of Americans are looking for work, the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act will protect and create American jobs:
Bill and Randy Bennett describe themselves as tool and die guys. They run a modern, noisy stamping plant off Route 303 in Brunswick, employing about 55 people in a company their father founded in his garage.
Automation Tool & Die can compete with anyone, the brothers say. Except China.
… The Asian giant uses unfair advantages to under-bid them on a growing list of projects. It’s costing them business and costing the region jobs and they’ve had enough.
[Bill Bennett] said he’ll put the efficiency of his plant up against anyone’s.
“But I don’t have anyone I can pay 80 cents an hour to work for me,” he said. “There are many facets to this issues. Currency manipulation is just one of them. I think we have a good standard of living in this country. The question is, ‘Do we want to keep it?’”