Nov. 5, 2009: Rep. Ryan and Rep. Murphy Urge Pres. Obama to Take Stance on Currency Manipulation

Nov 13, 2009
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Washington D.C. – Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH) and Congressman Tim Murphy (R-PA) were joined by 43 co-signers to send a joint letter to President Obama late Thursday expressing surprise and disappointment that the Treasury Department has once again declined to name China as a currency manipulator in the October 15th report to Congress. The letter urged the President to recognize China as illegally manipulating its currency, and to support the Ryan-Murphy bill to stop the harmful practice.

 

“I’m proud to be working with Congressman Murphy and a diverse group of our colleagues to fight on behalf of our American workers and American manufacturing” said Congressman Ryan. “We need to start making things again in America.  This petty, harmful trade practice has taken good jobs and investment out of our country, and I hope the President stands with us to stop it.  If China stops cheating on their currency, it will mean billions of dollars that will be invested back into the United States.  This can be a major stimulus and job creator for our Country. ”

 

“When countries play by the rules, we can compete and win,” said Congressman Murphy.  “But when countries, such as China, do not play by the rules, when there is no fairness, when they cheat, make inferior products or break the rules it is time for our government to step up and enforce those rules.  China has systematically manipulated its currency to create an unfair trade advantage over the United States and other global competitors.  It is time to put this practice to an end.  I ask that the President join Congressman Ryan and I in our efforts to stand up to China.”  

 

China has long engaged in illegal currency misalignment.  China’s cumulative $1.4 trillion trade surplus with the United States since 2001 should have had the natural economic effect of raising the value of the Yuan against the dollar to correct the trade imbalance.  But by illegally subsidizing its exports through the undervaluation of its currency by 30 percent or more, China distorts the gains from trade, creates barriers to free and fair trade, harms U.S. industries, and has destroyed millions of U.S. jobs. 

 

This past May, Congressman Ryan and Congressman Murphy introduced the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act of 2009 – H.R. 2378 (S. 1027 on the Senate side), which has been endorsed by the Fair Currency Coalition.  

 

The text of the letter follows.

# # #

 

November 5, 2009

 

The Honorable Barack Obama

The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20500

 

Dear President Obama:

 

We were both surprised and disappointed that the Treasury Department declined to name China as a currency manipulator in the October 15th report to Congress mandated by the 1988 Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act. The report’s finding that “no major trading partner of the United States met the standards” of manipulating its currency to gain an unfair advantage in its trade balance or balance of payments shows that our standards must be re-evaluated. In order for us to revitalize our economy, it is imperative that we recognize the actions that contributed to the current recession.

 

This past May, a bipartisan coalition of lawmakers reintroduced the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act, H.R. 2378, and S. 1027 on the Senate side.  This bill would target exchange rate misalignment between the U.S. Dollar, Chinese Yuan and other major trading partners, in order to reduce the unnatural comparative advantages that command economies can use against market economies.  We need to establish a firm approach to correcting this unfair trade practice, and defend American workers, industry and business that have been harmed by the unfair disadvantages in manufacturing and export that currency misalignment has created.

 

China continues to illegally subsidize products by a third of the costs by manipulating their currency to undercut American goods, and it’s important that the Treasury Department stands with the work we are doing in Congress to stop illegal and unfair trade.  We urge your support of this legislation – as you did during the 110th Congress -- and encourage you to take a strong stand on currency manipulation. 

 

Thank you for your consideration of this request and we look forward to working with you on protecting American workers from unfair trade.

 

Sincerely,

 

 _____________________                                          ___________________

Tim Ryan                                                                    Tim Murphy

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Betty Sutton                                                               Michael  H. Michaud

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Peter J. Visclosky                                                        Howard Coble

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Mike Rogers (AL-03)                                                 Walter B. Jones

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Thomas S. P. Perriello                                                 Daniel Lipinski

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Patrick T. McHenry                                                    Steve Buyer   

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Phil Hare                                                                     Harold Rogers

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Mark E. Souder                                                           Christopher John Lee

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Joe Donnelly                                                               Donald A. Manzullo

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Dan Burton                                                                 Lynn A. Westmoreland

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Duncan Hunter                                                           Marsha Blackburn

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Rosa L. DeLauro                                                        Jerry F. Costello

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Marcy Kaptur                                                              Joe Wilson

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Glenn Thompson                                                         Michael Doyle

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Charles A. Wilson                                                       Mike Rogers (MI-08)

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Todd Russell Platts                                                     Bob Inglis

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

John D. Dingell                                                           Christopher P. Carney

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Kathleen A. Dahlkemper                                            Thaddeus G. McCotter

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Bob Filner                                                                   Tim Holden

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Louise McIntosh Slaughter                                         Peter Hoekstra                                               

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Steve Kagen                                                                Bruce L. Braley

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                                          ___________________

Michael A. Arcuri                                                       Heath Shuler  

Member of Congress                                                   Member of Congress

 

_____________________                 

Dale E. Kildee                                                                                   

Member of Congress

 

cc: 

 

The Honorable Timothy F. Geithner

Secretary of the Treasury

U.S. Department of the Treasury
1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20220