Fight over Corporate Welfare Bank Continues

Debate over the little known Export-Import Bank is heating up once again. Opposition to this bank has increased over the past few years as conservative members of Congress were able to prevent the reauthorization of the Ex-Im Bank last year, but only temporarily.

After five short months Congress voted to bring it back to life, but only two out of five seats on the Ex-Im board of directors are currently filled, leaving the agency without a majority of directors necessary to approve transactions of more than $10 million.

The Ex-Im Bank provides taxpayer-backed loans to foreign companies for the purpose of buying American products. This puts taxpayer dollars at risk while benefiting only a handful of big businesses such as Boeing, General Electric, and Caterpillar. Federal legislation that picks winners and losers while risking taxpayer dollars is not fair or wise and amounts to nothing more than corporate welfare.

Unfortunately, language giving the board of director’s authority to approve transactions over $10 million without a majority has passed both the House and Senate Appropriations Committees for the State and Foreign Operations appropriations bill. Members of Congress should seek to remove this language from the final bill and oppose efforts to pass spending bills with the language included.

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