Today, Sens. Evan Bayh, Sherrod Brown, Richard Burr, Robert Casey Jr., Kirsten Gillibrand, Bob Hagan, Lindsey Graham, Arlen Spector, Debbie Stabenow and Mark Warner signed a letter to President Obama, urging him to accept the U.S. International Trade Commission's recommendations for relief from a surge of tires imported from China.
The ITC on June 18 unanimously found market disruption and recommended that tariffs of 55 percent in year one, 45 percent in year two and 35 percent in year three be placed across the board on passenger and light truck tires from China.
The ultimate decision is up to President Obama.
The letter states: "An imporant American industry - with manufacturing facilities in 13 states across the nation and employing over 31,000 workers - is on its knees due to the market disruption caused by imports of Chinese tires. Your decision to adopt the ITC's recommendation would remedy this disruption, save thousands of U.S. manufacturing jobs, and halt the further decline of the U.S. tire industry."
The United Steelworkers, which represent members in the tire industry, filed a petition with the ITC on April 20 that sought relief under Section 421 of the Trade Act of 1974. Section 421 is a temporary country-specific safeguard that China agreed to as part of its bilateral trade negotiations with the United States leading to its 2001 membership in the World Trade Organization.