Sen. Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., and two Republican colleagues leave for a six-day trip to China later this week to discuss currency issues with Chinese leaders, and inspect port security measures,
Joining Schumer on what he says is his first "government-paid overseas trip," will be Sens. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina. They will be in China from Sunday through March 26.
Graham and Schumer are cosponsors of legislation that would impose a 45 percent tariff on Chinese imports if that nation continues, according to Schumer, to undervalue its currency by more than 30 percent.
Schumer and Graham have set a March 31 deadline for moving their bill in the Senate unless China acts. However, Schumer acknowledged Wednesday that the U.S. Treasury Department is not giving much support to their bill.
Treasury Secretary John Snow has refrained from designating China a manipulator of its currency, and subject to possible American sanctions. And China's premier, Wen Jiabao, ruled out substantial currency revaluations in the near future.