United States may need this big stick

Canton Repository

Because the times are contentious, but more often because they have principled political differences, Ohio’s two U.S. senators don’t often agree on legislation.

But on an issue in which American jobs are at stake, Republican Rob Portman and Democrat Sherrod Brown see the problem, and one solution, the same way. The problem is China’s manipulating its currency. One solution, proposed by Brown, was endorsed by Portman on Wednesday.

Portman said he will vote for a bill that requires the U.S. government to consider currency issues in enforcing trade agreements. Brown is the lead sponsor of the Currency Exchange Rate Oversight Reform Act, which has four Democrats and five Republicans as primary co-sponsors and the support of 79 senators.

Brown says that conservative legislators and economists are increasingly concluding that China’s keeping its yuan artificially weak against the dollar should be a factor in determining whether trade agreements are being violated. The practice makes Chinese exports to the United States cheaper and U.S. exports to China more expensive.

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United States may need this big stick »