This week, Rep. Joe Baca (D-Rialto) took action to force a vote on bipartisan job creating legislation that would pressure China to play by the rules of fair trade -- providing our government with effective tools to address unfair currency manipulation. Rep. Baca joined his colleagues in signing a discharge petition to bring up The Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act (H.R. 639).
"It is long past time Congress takes decisive action to create more good paying jobs here at home," said Rep. Baca. "Unfortunately, since Republicans have taken control of the House earlier this year, they have yet to offer one single proposal to create jobs here in America, and instead have voted to end Medicare as we know it and protect tax breaks for the ultra rich, Big Oil, and corporations that ship jobs overseas."
"That's why I signed this discharge petition, to force the Republican Leadership to allow a vote on the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act," continued Rep. Baca. "This legislation can create anywhere from half a million to more than 2 million new jobs, and would enhance our economic and national security at no cost to American taxpayers."
The Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act helps American businesses compete on a more level playing field by treating fundamentally undervalued currencies as a prohibited subsidy, allowing the U.S. to take action to counter this unfair trade practice. This legislation is an essential element in addressing currency manipulation by the Chinese government, which has continually jeopardized efforts to create and preserve U.S. manufacturing jobs.
Democrats are launching this discharge petition, which can force action on legislation with signatures of a majority of the House of Representatives, because the Republican Leadership continues to block its consideration. The legislation overwhelmingly passed the House of Representatives last year with a vote of 348 - 79.
"For too long China has gotten away with manipulating its currency to decrease the price of its goods on the world market," concluded Rep. Baca. "We must do everything in our power to support American companies and American manufacturers in the face of such unfair economic practices. By forcing our trading partners to play on fair ground, I believe we will see a resurgence in exports and jobs here in America."
The Chinese government continues to intervene in the markets to suppress the value of its currency -- making American exports more expensive and Chinese products cheaper. A new report confirms that up to 2 million American jobs could be created if China and other Asian countries stopped manipulating their currency to gain an unfair advantage over American businesses and workers. H.R. 639 is part of the Democratic "Make it in America" manufacturing strategy to create the high-skill, high-wage jobs of the future--promoting American competitiveness, innovation, and exports.