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GOP Reps. Amash, Flake attack corporate welfare with bill ending Ex-Im Bank

In a “Dear Colleague” letter seeking support for the bill, Amash said Ex-Im allows the federal government to subsidize loans to overseas companies and pick winners and losers in the marketplace through its ability to decide which loans and guarantees to approve, and tinker with the conditions of these loans.

“Ex-Im has become a tempting vehicle for social engineering and red tape, as well,” Amash wrote. “Examples include extensive economic and environmental impact reports, limits on foreign content, shipping restrictions and mandates for renewable energy.

“Ex-Im does not create jobs or expand the economy,” he added. “At best, it simply redistributes jobs from other exporters and import-using businesses to the bank’s clients.”

With their bill, Amash and Flake are siding with conservative groups like the Club for Growth and the Heritage Foundation, both of which oppose the reauthorization of Ex-Im.

“Conservatives should strongly oppose the reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank,” Amash said in a discussion with Heritage this month. “Ex-Im provides below-market loans and loan guarantees to foreign entities that purchase domestic goods. Principled conservatives recognize that this type of corporate welfare violates the Rule of Law because it unjustly enriches some companies at the expense of others, while putting taxpayers on the hook for billions of dollars of loans.”

Authorization for the Bank expires in May. In 2011, the Bank helped more than $40 billion in export sales by providing more than $30 billion in financing for them.

The Senate tried but failed to put language reauthorizing Ex-Im in the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act earlier this month.

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