By  on October 12, 2011

WASHINGTON — The Senate passed legislation Tuesday night that could ultimately lead to punitive tariffs on Chinese imports if the country fails to reform its monetary policy, ratchetting up the pressure on China, which has warned it could start a trade war.

On a bipartisan vote of 63 to 35, Senate Democrats, including Sen. Charles Schumer (D., N.Y.), a chief co-sponsor of the bill who has been pressing for punitive legislation against China’s undervalued currency for six years, sent a strong message to Beijing and increased the pressure on the House to take up the measure.

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