Dec 08, 2015

Keep the Ex-Im Vacancies

Post by Derek Yale

Arlington, VA — Special interests may have revived the Ex-Im Bank, but what the U.S. Senate does next will prove whether Ex-Im supporters’ “small business” rhetoric was nothing more than a talking point to keep doling out corporate welfare.

According to Bloomberg, the Ex-Im Bank “won’t be able to approve transactions valued at more than $10 million because three of the five spots on its board of directors are vacant.”

By doing nothing—and refusing to advance President Obama’s nominee to the bank’s board of directors—Congress can make a clear statement that, even though the bank is back in business, that doesn’t mean we’ll go back to business as usual.

Freedom Partners Senior Policy Advisor Andy Koenig Issued The Following Statement:

“Supporters of Ex-Im use small businesses as an excuse to defend corporate welfare. But appointing new members to the board would send billions in tax dollars to hugely profitable corporations like GE who have admitted in the past they don’t need it. Anyone who votes to fill these vacancies is voting to support taxpayer-funded corporate welfare for big business. Plain and simple.”

Ex-Im Backers Used ‘Small Businesses’ To Justify Their Support For Reauthorization

Ex-Im Bank President And Chairman Fred P. Hochberg: “Keeping Small Businesses – The Engine Of Our Economy – At The Forefront Of U.S. Exports Is At The Core Of Our Work At Ex-Im Bank.” (“Written Testimony Of Fred P. Hochberg – President And Chairman Export-Import Bank Of The United States Before The House Committee On Oversight And Government Reform, Subcommittee On Economic Growth, Job Creation, And Regulatory Affairs,” 7/29/14)

Hochberg: “The Most Important Thing We Do Is That We Support The Small Businesses.” “The most important thing we do is that we support the small businesses. Ninety percent of our customers are small businesses. And small businesses received the lion’s share of the actual loan guarantees: 39 percent of the exports we supported came from small business.” (Michael Grunwald, “‘Frankly, We’re Going To Be Reauthorized’,” Politico’s The Agenda, 6/2/15)

Rep. Stephen Fincher (R-TN): “Today’s Vote Was For The Thousands Of Small Businesses Whose Hands Have Been Tied For Months Because They Are Unable To Receive Critical Financing That Allows Them To Break Into Emerging Markets.” “With 95 percent of the world’s consumers living overseas, exports are essential to helping American small businesses seize opportunities for growth and prosperity. Today’s vote was for the thousands of small businesses whose hands have been tied for months because they are unable to receive critical financing that allows them to break into emerging markets. When Ex-Im gives companies the resources they need to sell their products abroad, their employees, suppliers and communities succeed at home. The passage of this bill marks a historic day in the House. This is a win for small businesses, hardworking Americans and for rank and file Members who want to get things done for their constituents.” (Rep. Stephen Fincher, “Fincher Bill To Reform And Reauthorize U.S. Export-Import Bank Passes House With A Majority Of Republicans Voting In Favor,” Press Release, 10/27/15)

U.S. Chamber Of Commerce: “Without Ex-Im, Small Businesses Will Lose Out To Their Overseas Competitors.” “Small businesses rely on Ex-Im Bank to export their products. Nearly 90% of Ex-Im’s transactions supported U.S. small businesses in 2014. … Without Ex-Im, small businesses will lose out to their overseas competitors, many of which are backed by export credit agencies 18 times the size of the U.S. Ex-Im Bank.” (“Show Your Support For The Export-Import Bank,” U.S. Chamber Of Commerce, Accessed 12/8/15)

GE Admitted That The Company Would “Never” Use A Lack Of Government Support As An Excuse To Not Do Business Somewhere

Jeffrey Immelt Told Chairman Hochberg At The Export-Import Bank’s 2010 Annual Conference That General Electric “Is Big Enough That We Can Never Use [A Lack Of Government Support] As An Excuse” For Not Being Able To Do Business Somewhere. HOCHBERG: “Are there places where because of that you have found it much harder to do business than it might otherwise have been because we don’t have the same kind of national interest that you see in Germany and you see in Italy. Many countries, the government takes a much more direct hand in promoting exports.” IMMELT: “You know Fred, our company is big enough that we can never use that as an excuse. You know, in other words, GE should never use as an excuse that we couldn’t go someplace because the government wasn’t there.” (“A Conversation: Powering Jobs Through Exports,” Export-Import Bank of the United States, 03/11/10)

IMMELT: “We Can Fight Our Own Way By And Large.” (“A Conversation: Powering Jobs Through Exports,” Export-Import Bank of the United States, 03/11/10)