Congressman Gregory W. Meeks (D-NY), a senior member of the House Financial Services Committee, released the following statement on Republicans rejecting an amendment today to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank, which provides vital support for American workers and businesses:
"As the past chair of the subcommittee on International Monetary Policy and Trade, I have zealously supported the Export-Import Bank and its reauthorization. The Ex-Im Bank plays a vital role in stimulating exports from American companies. Those exports, in turn, support 300,000 jobs across every state in the country. Thus I am deeply disturbed that Senate Republicans rejected the Cantwell amendment that would have extended the Bank's authorization for four years with the authority to make $140 billion in loans, which would provide great certainty to American businesses and workers.
"Some critics of the Bank's reauthorization claim this is an unnecessary function of a government agency, contending this displaces private sector capital that could meet a company's financing needs. Such a view is, unfortunately, naïve and assumes mature capital markets in every location of the globe where American firms hope to sell goods. The financing provided by Ex-Im levels the playing field for American companies in countries that have less developed capital markets. In the process, it generates a profit for the government of $3-4 billion over 10 years, all of which goes to paying down the deficit.
"By opposing the Bank's reauthorization and increase in lending levels, Republicans demagogue to a dangerous ideology that puts middle class American jobs at risk, while harming our critical manufacturing and export-based industries.
"The simple truth is, the Ex-Im Bank provides financing that allows American companies to compete with foreign firms who receive substantial state-sponsored assistance, and without that financing American businesses and workers would suffer. It is time for Republicans to put partisan politics aside for the betterment of our economy and our country."