The "China issue" and a Texas Senate race

Posted by scapozzola on 02/02/2012

All right, let's get something straight-- both Republican and Democratic voters want action on China's cheating.

A recent national poll conducted by the Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) showed strong support across the political spectrum for cracking down on China's illegal trade practices.

Specifically, when asked whether they want Washington to "get tough" on China:

  • 59% of Democratic voters were in favor
  • 63% of Republican voters were in favor. 

[See page 32 of the national poll's findings for specific voter demographics.]

Which brings us to a hard-fought Senate primary race in Texas.  As National Journal reports of a recent candidate debate, a question about how the U.S. should deal with China's deliberately undervalued currency "elicited the clearest difference" between two of the front-running Republican candidates, ex-state Solicitor Gen. Ted Cruz (R) and Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst (R):

A question about how the U.S. should deal with China's manipulation of its currency "elicited the clearest difference between Dewhurst and Cruz." Dewhurst "said he would have voted for a bill that" the Senate considered last fall that would have given the POTUS more authority to get tough on China, which has been involved in cyberwarfare and the theft of patents. Dewhurst said that bill "was aimed at forcing China to act more responsibly in the marketplace."

But Cruz "countered that the bill would have potentially started a trade war and said he would have opposed it." Cruz: "It's easy to demagogue on an issue like free trade, but the U.S. and Texas benefit from free trade."

It's clear that China and its ongoing currency manipulation have grown as key issues. Voters will be looking to see where candidates stand on "getting tough" with China.

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