President George W. Bush called on China to loosen its peg to the US dollar, telling a campaign rally in economically depressed Ohio, "We understand what currency valuations can do to manufacturing." Bush said his administration has been working with China to "just give us a chance to compete." Both Republicans and Democrats have accused China of keeping its currency undervalued, helping it build up a US$124 billion trade surplus with the US in 2003 alone. China has been blamed for taking away manufacturing jobs in Ohio and neighboring Michigan, where there is rising concern over China's future impact on the state's historic hold on automaking.
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