By Kevin Cirilli - 06/24/14 01:10 PM EDT
Rep. Aaron Schock (R-Ill.) on Tuesday said he continues to support the Export-Import Bank despite withdrawing his name from a letter urging Congress to renew its charter.
"Mr. Schock fully supports reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank and recognizes this is an issue that the Republican conference is willing to deal with at the appropriate time and in the appropriate way," said Schock senior aide Benjamin Cole.
Schock’s name was on the original version of a letter from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers urging renewal of the bank. When it was released, it bore the names of 41 Republicans — but not Schock.
Cole declined additional comment on the specifics of Schock wanting his name removed from the letter.
A GOP source familiar with the issue said that Schock was not comfortable with the timing of the letter's release, given that one day earlier newly elected House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said that he would not support Ex-Im's reauthorization.
The same source said that the letter was circulated before House Majority Leader Eric Cantor's (R-Va.) stunning primary loss.
"At the time, it seemed that a prudent path forward for Ex-Im's reauthorization was a letter from a large contingent of the Republican conference to House Speaker John Boehner and then-Majority Leader Cantor," the GOP source said. "But we had an election two weeks ago and things changed substantively."
Boehner (R-Ohio) did not offer a lifeline for Ex-Im in remarks to reporters on Tuesday.
Ex-Im expires September 30 unless Congress reauthorizes it. The bank provides financial loan guarantees to businesses looking to invest internationally and was created in 1934.
Tea party critics argue the bank is corporate welfare, while supporters say that it helps U.S. businesses enter into international markets while supporting domestic jobs.
No bill has been introduced in the House, but Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) are expected to drop a reauthorization bill this week.
According to the GOP source, there was an internal push to postpone the Chamber letter and Schock "no longer became comfortable with the legislative strategy."
"We're dealing with an entirely different Congress at this point," the GOP source said. "But it no longer seems that's the prudent path to advocate for reauthorization."
House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) is having a hearing on Ex-Im on Wednesday. Hensarling is a staunch critic of Ex-Im.