Tag Archive | "Senate"


The following is a press release issued by the 11 Senators who signed the letter referenced in the article.

11 Senators Raise Concerns over Chinese Currency Manipulation and Effect on Exports; Call for “Level Playing Field” for U.S. Businesses and Workers

WASHINGTON, D.C.—U.S. Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Olympia Snowe (R-ME), Charles Schumer (D-NY), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Jim Bunning (R-KY), Arlen Specter (D-PA), Susan Collins (R-ME), Ron Wyden (D-OR), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Bob Casey (D-PA), and Carl Levin (D-MI) today sent a letter to President Obama calling for stronger action on behalf of U.S. businesses and workers competing against unfair trade practices conducted abroad, particularly the manipulation of currency by the Chinese government to unfairly boost exports.

The senators urged the President to do more to combat these unfairly-subsidized imports and for the U.S. Department of Commerce and other federal agencies to “use the available trade enforcement authorities provided by the Congress to ensure a level playing field for U.S. businesses and the workers upon which they rely.”

“There is no doubt that the Chinese government is manipulating its currency to keep its value lower than it otherwise would be which gives its exports a significant price advantage over U.S. manufactured goods.  We are gravely concerned by the Administration’s failure to address China’s currency practices and other predatory actions,” the senators wrote. “In particular, the Administration has not actively used the trade enforcement authorities and tools it has to defend American manufacturers and workers against unfairly subsidized imports.”

“An effective strategy to enforce trade commitments includes steps to combat currency manipulation, the evasion of trade remedy duties, and foreign non-tariff trade barriers. A framework that provides for a balanced approach to trade will enable the Congress to support a comprehensive trade agenda and the key nominees that are required to implement it,” the senators continued. “During this economic recovery, it is critical the Administration use all trade enforcement tools available to ensure U.S. industries the opportunity to compete fairly and export goods and services.”

The full letter to President Obama is below.  .

August 4, 2010

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20500

Dear President Obama:

We are looking forward to the release of the National Export Initiative this September, as outlined in Executive Order 13534. We support the goal to double exports in the next five years, and are committed to working with the Administration and the private sector to achieve that goal.

Nevertheless, the focus on growing exports must not and cannot come at the expense of ensuring a fair playing field for our manufacturers.  American manufacturers — forced to compete against the predatory practices of one of our major trading partners — are struggling to stay solvent.  And, to state the obvious, we need a strong, healthy manufacturing sector if we truly hope to achieve our goal of doubling exports in the next five years.

Although we recognize and appreciate the approach that the Administration has taken on some trade enforcement problems, it continues to fall short in addressing China’s currency practices and other predatory actions.  We believe that this is due, in part, by the Department of Commerce’s unwillingness to use the trade enforcement authorities and tools it has readily available to defend American manufacturers and workers against unfairly subsidized imports. There is no doubt that the Chinese government is manipulating its currency to keep its value lower than it otherwise would be, which gives its exports a significant price advantage over U.S. manufactured goods.

We believe that a vital component of an export and jobs expansion strategy is a trade agenda that places as much priority on combating unfair trade practices as on obtaining commitments to open foreign markets to American goods and services. Imports are now surging into the U.S. – they are growing much faster than exports – and failure to address those that receive foreign subsidies or benefit from currency manipulation undermine the nation’s export and economic objectives.

An effective strategy to enforce trade commitments includes steps to combat currency manipulation, the evasion of trade remedy duties, and foreign non-tariff trade barriers. A framework that provides for a balanced approach to trade will enable the Congress to support a comprehensive trade agenda and the key nominees that are required to implement it.

China’s actions to subsidize its exports pose both immediate and long-term challenges to American manufacturers and workers still recovering from the economic recession. While we recognize the Chinese government recently allowed its currency to begin to appreciate, the path towards its currency appreciating to a true market-based value remains long. Until that happens, the fair implementation of trade remedy laws is required to provide industries a life-line to compete. If one manufacturer is forced to close because we fail to combat subsidized imports, that is one less manufacturer able to export goods abroad.

The Commerce Department is continuing to delay consideration of allegations from domestic coated paper producers and aluminum extrusion producers that China’s currency manipulation is a countervailable subsidy.  This delay is indefensible.  The law is straightforward – it requires that the Commerce Department initiate an investigation to determine whether a countervailable subsidy is provided if the domestic industry “alleges” the elements necessary for the imposition of a countervailing duty and provides “information reasonably available” to the domestic industry supporting the allegations.

We believe the Commerce Department has the capability to apply the correct legal standard for assessment of an allegation and has the authority under current law to do so. It is all the more troubling, therefore, that the Department has refused for many months to even investigate the allegations and evidence provided by domestic manufacturers that China’s currency practices provide a countervailable subsidy.

During this economic recovery, it is critical the Administration use all trade enforcement tools available to ensure U.S. industries the opportunity to compete fairly and export goods and services. We encourage you to consider whether the Commerce Department and other federal agencies are doing their part to use the available trade enforcement authorities provided by the Congress to ensure a level playing field for U.S. businesses and the workers upon which they rely. This includes ensuring foreign producers do not evade legitimate anti-dumping and countervailing duties.

We are eager to work with you to address these issues and to move forward with trade policies that promote exports, long-term economic growth and job creation.


Sherrod Brown
U.S. Senator

Olympia J. Snowe
U.S. Senator

Charles E. Schumer
U.S. Senator

Debbie Stabenow
U.S. Senator

Jim Bunning
U.S. Senator

Arlen Specter
U.S. Senator

Susan Collins
U.S. Senator

Ron Wyden
U.S. Senator

Benjamin L. Cardin
U.S. Senator

Robert P. Casey, Jr.
U.S. Senator

Carl Levin
U.S. Senator

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Informative US Senate Candidates Trade and Jobs Forum 2010

The following is a video and blog entry taken by and written by an attendee of CPA’s Colorado Senate Candidate Forum.  Click here to see the entry and more of Precinct368cor’s Weblog.

The primary election is August 1oth 2010 and US Senate candidates from Colorado had a chance to share their knowledge, listen, learn, discuss, offer inputs and share with voters and audience their concerns over our economy, jobs and trade issues. The Coalition for a prosperous America and other locals sponsored the event.

The Coalition for Prosperous America is a non‑profit organization representing the interests of 2.7 million households through farm, ranch, manufacturing and labor membership. “we cannot create achieve full employment and economic growth without fixing the trade deficit,” said Michael Stumo, CEO of CPA.

There will be more information to be added as video and audio files get loaded for publication. This is all grassroots so not as fast as CNN or Fox but as close in timing for voters are passionate about this year elections and very focused on the well being of their Country and the state of Colorado. Several isues were brought forward such as problems with foreign currency manipulation, our record trade deficit, foreign value added taxes that act as tariffs on U.S. exports and how all this is affecting our ability to produce jobs at home. Another point discussed is the fact that trade country rivals do not play by the rules and later cause us a double taxation by subsidizing it via imports. More information will be available as more video gets loaded for publication. The forum was non partisan with both Republican and democrats attending to hear their US Senate candidates discuss the issues openly. Democrat Andrew Romanoff spoke eloquently and is putting up a strong challenge towards Michael Bennett, the incumbent appointed to take interior secretary Ken Salazar’s Senate seat. Republican Ken Buck suggested that we need to get our house in order. We have to stay competitive, discuss the issues, take action, continue to strive and come up with answers. The Washington DC establishment backed candidates Michael Bennet and Jane Norton were a no show. Another interesting question in the afternoon session was, Why do we continue to call our trade “free trade” when in reality we have managed trade by the World Trade Organization (WTO) and Are we a Nation being conquered by a keyword? US senate candidate (D) Romanoff replied, Good question, this is something we must discuss and this forum is one way where with the dialogue we could all learn something.

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Buck cites spending concerns

The following is an article that appeared in the Pueblo Chieftan about CPA’s CO Senate Candidate Forum on Jobs, Trade, and Economic Recovery that took place July 20, 2010 in Colorado Springs, CO.

By PATRICK MALONE | [email protected]

COLORADO SPRINGS — U.S. Senate candidate Ken Buck trumpeted shifts in the corporate tax structure and domestic production of natural resources as his favored approaches to resurrecting America’s punch-drunk economy.

A bipartisan crowd of more than 100 gathered at the Stargazers Theatre for a forum hosted by the Coalition for a Prosperous America targeting the topics of economic growth, currency and jobs.

Buck fielded written questions submitted by the audience and read by moderator Joe Cole of Fox21 television news.

The candidate expressed his opposition to President Barack Obama’s policies ranging from the federal stimulus package to reforms in health care and the finance industry.

“I’m hard-pressed to find something I agree with,” Buck said.

He also said he would oppose the extension of unemployment benefits that face a vote in the Senate Tuesday.

Most of all, Buck stayed on point with his message that reduced government spending and lower taxes on individuals and businesses are the answers to America’s economic crisis.

“If we get our federal spending under control, we get our federal tax under control,” he said. “Reduce spending, reduce taxes and we will be more competitive globally.”

Buck also pointed to the link between affordable energy and manufacturing profitability, which he said increased environmental regulation was strained by imposing rules that place America at a competitive disadvantage.

“We need to drill here,” he said. “We need to look at nuclear energy.”

The candidate stopped short of calling for trade tariffs or adopting a governmental “buy-American” policy as answers to America’s reliance on affordable goods from foreign shores.

“I would not at this point (support that policy shift). I think we need to get our house in order before we deal with tariffs or penalizing folks whose products we’re importing,” said Buck. “We need to deal with our energy issue. We need to deal with our tax issue.”

Instead, he said creating an environment that’s friendlier to business in America could accomplish the same goal.

“Corporations are not patriotic. Corporations are profit-seeking entities. We need to create a climate in this country that will keep jobs here because corporations find it profitable to keep them here,” Buck said.

Buck, the Weld County district attorney, is facing former Lt. Gov. Jane Norton in the Republican primary for U.S. Senate. The winner of that race faces the victor in the Democratic primary between U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet and former Colorado House Speaker Andrew Romanoff.

Buck and Romanoff attended Tuesday’s event in Colorado Springs. Norton and Bennet were invited, but didn’t attend. Organizers said the Norton campaign cited a scheduling conflict, and Bennet was in session with the U.S. Senate in Washington, D.C.

Michael Stumo, CEO for the Coalition for a Prosperous America, characterized the group as a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that focuses on trade and economic issues and represents the interests of farming, ranching, manufacturing and labor. It advocates human rights, American sovereignty, balanced trade, environmentally neutral or beneficial policy and other factors with America’s economic well-being in mind.

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Senate candidates sound off at forum

The following is an article about CPA’s CO Senate Candidate Forum on Jobs, Trade, and Economic Recovery that appeared on the Fox 21 website.

COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO. — Two senate candidates faced the hot seat at the Stargazers Theater in front of dozens of concerned citizens Tuesday.

The Coalition for a Prosperous America hosted a forum for the senate candidates.

Republican Ken Buck and Democrat Andrew Romanoff attended the event.

They spoke on several hot button issues such as jobs, economy and trade policies.

Sitting beneath slides showing the United States deficit and job loss over the last several years Buck and Romanoff were faced with a grim picture.

“I believe in competition and I know Americans can win a fair fight. But this fight isn’t fair,” said Romanoff.

The event was not a debate and the candidates were never on the stage at the same time.

Each candidate gave a short statement then took questions from voters.

Like most political forums this year the focus remained on jobs and the economy.

“We gotta reduce government spending and we gotta give incentives to the private sector to get jobs back on track. We’re gonna do that with a smart energy policy and a smart tax policy,” said Buck.

“We could put a lot more Americans back to work repairing roads and bridges and dams and water systems,” said Romanoff.

Romanoff says he agrees with the bill the Senate passed Tuesday extending unemployment benefits.

“I do believe at this time, given the circumstances, we’re in the worst recession since the great depression, it is appropriate to extend unemployment benefits,” said Romanoff, followed by applause from the audience.

Buck, however, disagrees and says it’s time for the government to stop spending money that they don’t have.

“The key is I think to most Americans is that they’re not spending, taking more dollars out of their wallets and sending it to the government. And it doesn’t matter whether you call it an income tax or a sales tax or a property tax, a mill levy freeze a fee increase,” said Buck.

But both candidates do agree that it’s time to bring jobs back to America.

“We’re exporting opportunity and importing unemployment. That doesn’t make any sense at all,” said Romanoff.

Primary elections will take place August 10th.

Senate candidates Jane Norton and Senator Michael Bennet did not attend the forum.

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Invitation: 7/20/10 – Colorado Senate Candidate Forum on Trade, Jobs, and Economic Recovery

July 13, 2010

Dear Friends:

I am writing to invite you to a very important upcoming Colorado Springs event: A U.S. Senate Candidate Forum on Trade, Jobs, and Economic Recovery.  The Colorado Chapter of the Coalition for a Prosperous America is hosting the event.

  • Ken Buck (R) - Confirmed
  • Andrew Romanoff (D) - Confirmed
  • Senator Michael Bennet (D) - Invited, not yet confirmed
  • Jane Norton (R) - Invited, not yet confirmed

The Candidate Forum will enable you to question the candidates on what they will do, if elected, to fix the U.S. trade deficit, create jobs and help Colorado’s and America’s economy recovery.

When:    July 20, 2010 from 11:00a to 2:00p
Where:   Stargazers Theater, 10 Parkside Dr., Colorado Springs, CO
Register Here: $10 will reserve your boxed lunch

Presenting Media Sponsor:
Colorado Springs Independent

Other cosponsoring organizations include:

The Greater Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce
El Paso Board of County Commissioners
Colorado Springs Regional Economic Development Corporation
Colorado National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB)

The Constitutionalist Today

Catamount Institute
El Paso County Democratic Party
El Paso County Republican Party
Citizens Project

Colorado Independent Cattle Growers Association (CICA)
R-CALF USA Colorado Chapter
Rocky Mountain Tooling & Machining Assn.
David Anderson

Finishes, Ltd.
Ranch Foods Direct
Springs Fabrication
New American Colonies

Incognito Marketing
Cogent Strategies
Petrogen, Inc.
Taeus International
Catholic Charities of Colorado Springs

Voters and business and community leaders will learn how they can be part of the solution to fix Colorado’s and America’s economy, and will be able to ask the candidates to be accountable on trade and economic issues.

For more information, call Sara Haimowitz, CPA Development Coordinator, 413-203-1410, [email protected]


Thank you for your consideration.


Tom Neppl, CPA Colorado Chapter and President, Springs Fabrication

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OH-Sen: Tied

OH-Sen:  The Ohio Poll (pdf link) by the University of Cincinnati finds a tied race for the Senate.

Rob Portman (R) 46
Lee Fisher (D) 47 

Incumbent Dem Ted Strickland has an edge over John Kasich (R) leading 49-44%.  Strickland’s numbers were quite bad, but now are improving.

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CO-Sen: Republicans now lagging

CO-Sen:  Public Policy Polling now has both Dem Senate candidates, Andrew Romanoff and Michael Bennett, slightly ahead of the Republicans Jane Norton and Ken Buck.  This is a change from a few weeks ago.  The race is basically too close to call, with the lead switching, so it is a toss-up race.  It neither leans Republican nor leans Democrat.

Bennet 44 - Norton 41

Bennett 45 - Buck 39

Romanoff 43 - Norton 41

Romanoff 41 - Buck 38

Republican candidate (and Lieut. Gov.) Jane Norton is considered the strongest primary candidate for the GOP from a national perspective, even though she is an underdog at the Colorado GOP convention in August.  There, party insiders may choose her challenger, Ken Buck.  That is why Norton has a petition operation going to get enough citizen petitions in each Colorado congressional district to qualify for the primary ballot without winning the convention.

There is a mirror image scenario going on with the Democrats.  Incumbent Bennet is favored by Washington, but Romanoff may win the August Dem convention.  So Bennet will do a similar petition operation.

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Election results - incumbents get hammered

Yesterday was the biggest election day so far in 2010 in terms of national significance.  Primaries in Pennsylvania, Kentucky and Arkansas.  Also a PA special election to fill Murtha’s seat.  Incumbents and candidates favored by party leadership both took a hit.  

I will only discuss the hottest races below, in national terms, with a focus on Pennsylvania.

PA-Sen Dem primary:  In the Democratic primary, Joe Sestak pulled off an upset of Arlen Specter by 54 to 46%.  Polls had Sestak surging, but leveling off to a tie in the last pre-primary election.  The eight point spread was not predicted by anybody, to my knowledge.  Many times a surging candidate will have more support than the polls say, as in this case.  Obama, Biden and PA Governor Ed Rendell were supporting Specter.  

On the Republican side, Peg Luksik had a strong showing garnering nearly one out of five votes, but lost to the favored Pat Toomey, 81-19%.  

PA-12 Special Election:   I said on Monday that this seat was a toss-up or leaning Republican.  No so.  Mark Critz (D) easily beat Tim Burns (R) by eight points, 53-45%.  This was the race to fill the late John Murtha’s seat, and is arguably the only race that did not follow the anti-incumbent, anti-establishment tide.  Critz could be considered an insider, in that he was a Murtha staffer.  

Simultaneous to this Special Election to fill Murtha’s seat for the remainder of the term was a Primary Election for both R’s and D’s.  Burns and Critz both won their party primary, so both will face off again in November.

KY-Sen Republican primary:  I did not discuss this
race much at TradeReform, but it was a big race in national, Tea Party
terms.  Rand Paul crushed the Republican establishment pick, Trey
Grayson, by 23 points, 58-35%.  Rand Paul is a combination Ron Paul
candidate and Tea Party candidate.  Ron Paul is Rand Paul’s father, but
Ron Paul is not necessarily a Tea Partier, as evidenced by the fact of a
Tea Party challenge to the elder Paul during this election cycle.  Son
Rand did run exclusively on a Tea Party platform. 

AR-Senate Democratic primary:  Blanche Lincoln underperformed badly.  She won but she lost.  Arkansas is a run-off state, meaning that where a primary candidate does not receive 50% of the vote, then there is a run-off election between the top two candidates.  Yesterday, she beat primary challenger and Lieut. Gov. Bill Halter, 44.5 - 42.5%.  But a run-off will happen.  Lincoln was challenged as too conservative and Halter is supported by the progressive Dem base.

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PA-Sen: Dem primary tied

PA-Sen:  Quinnipiac’s final poll shows a tie between Joe Sestak and Arlen Specter, the two Dems, at 43-43% respectively.  Sestak has the momentum, which slowed in the past week.  Specter has the support of the Dem leadership in the state and nationally.   

The White House supports Specter, but:

CBS chief Washington correspondent Bob Schieffer is now saying that he has it on good authority that the White House is privately bracing for Arlen Specter to lose tomorrow.

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IL-Sen: Giannoulias (D) claims a tied race

IL-Sen:  Alexi Giannoulias (D) is from a banking family.  The Broadway Bank, to be specific.  He is a candidate for Obama’s Senate seat.  Wall Street and banks are not well liked this year.  Banking regulators took over Broadway Bank in April.  Not good for Giannoulias. 

Ron Kirk (R) is the Republican candidate.  Kirk expectedly pounced on the bank takover issue.  And the poll numbers went his way.

The Gianoulias campaign released a poll today claiming their man is now running even with Kirk, and that in late April, he was down by 6.

This was a campaign commissioned poll, not an independent one.  We’ll see how others see the race in the coming weeks.

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