A majority of congressional Democrats, with assistance from several Republicans, are desperately trying to reauthorize an 80-year-old corporate-welfare agency known as the
Most Americans have never heard of it, even though it has them on the hook for
This page has said it before:
Earlier this year, fiscal conservatives seemed ready to do just that. Now it appears their resolve has weakened and status-quo inertia is sinking in.
A bipartisan group of senators introduced a bill to reauthorize the bank just before
And in a joint letter to the
How disappointing to see members of the "conservative" party advocating for an entity that does little more than offer sweetheart deals to a handful of favored corporations and foreign governments, including
It's equally amusing to see Democrats join hands with Big Business lobbyists to tout the
That could be because, as U.S. Rep.
"A lot of the business people supported Obama in '08," he said. "And then we really (ticked) them off mightily with the financial reform bill."
Big Business lobbyists, labor unions, the
Really? It seems like business would do just fine without it, considering Ex-Im assisted in only 2.2 percent of U.S. exports last year. In other words, nearly 98 percent of export transactions somehow managed to occur without government involvement and taxpayer-funded loans, guarantees and insurance.
Surely, America's private-sector banks would love the chance to compete for additional business. And even if they chose to turn down a deal, why would the government presume it's OK to collateralize taxpayer money for something the private sector deems too risky?
Ex-Im supporters argue 89 percent of its 3,842 deals during the past fiscal year benefited small businesses. That sounds impressive -- until you realize the incredibly miniscule volume of financing involved in those small-business transactions.
What the bank's cheerleaders fail to mention is that, on a volume basis,
No, Ex-Im is not some homey "mom-and-pop" community lender, by any means. There's a reason it's called "
Some Republicans foolishly believe this Depression-era relic simply needs to be reformed. They are wrong.
There is no "fixing" something that shouldn't exist in the first place. The government has no business playing banker to politically connected firms -- especially when it's the American taxpayer who's on the hook for a
We sincerely hope Ex-Im opponents, including U.S. Sen.
We also hope other congressional Republicans, during their five-week hiatus, locate their backbones.
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