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Scott Walker (copy)

Gov. Scott Walker speaks to supporters July 13 while announcing his candidacy for the Republican nomination for president. 

AP

Gov. Scott Walker on Monday called for President Barack Obama to cancel Chinese President Xi Jinping’s state visit to the United States, urging the president to show "some backbone."

Walker's statement comes in the midst of plummeting stock prices in the U.S., a result of global concerns tied to China's economic slowdown. The drop is being referred to in China as "Black Monday."

"Americans are struggling to cope with the fall in today's markets driven in part by China's slowing economy and the fact that they actively manipulate their economy. Rather than honoring Chinese President Xi Jinping with an official state visit next month, President Obama should focus on holding China accountable over its increasing attempts to undermine U.S. interests," Walker said in a statement.

"Given China’s massive cyberattacks against America, its militarization of the South China Sea, continued state interference with its economy, and persistent persecution of Christians and human rights activists, President Obama needs to cancel the state visit," he continued. "There's serious work to be done rather than pomp and circumstance. We need to see some backbone from President Obama on U.S.-China relations."

In June, Walker said the U.S. must "forcefully raise concerns" with China about cyber-attacks. 

The president visited Xi in China last year to announce an agreement on climate change.

Obama and Xi also had an informal meeting in California in 2013. The same year, Walker led his first overseas trade mission to China, meeting with Xi and opening a trade center to give Wisconsin businesses "expanded access to growing markets." 

"In a lot of states in America, we’d like to have that kind of slow growth they are projecting" even in some of China’s slower-expanding regions, Walker said in an interview in Shanghai, Forbes reported in 2013. "We’re still very big on doing business in Shanghai in particular, but throughout the country."

Walker's flagship jobs agency, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, has a trade mission to China scheduled in 2016.

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Jessie Opoien covers state government and politics for the Capital Times. She joined the Cap Times in 2013 and has also covered Madison life, race relations, culture and music. She has also covered education and politics for the Oshkosh Northwestern.

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