Heritage takes aim at Ex-Im's backers

Officials at the conservative group Heritage Action are targeting Republican supporters of Rep. Stephen FincherStephen Lee FincherTrump announces, endorses ambassador to Japan's Tennessee Senate bid Lamar Alexander's exit marks end of an era in evolving Tennessee Tensions on immigration erupt in the House GOP MORE's (R-Tenn.) five-year reauthorization bill for the Export-Import Bank.

Heritage Action officials launched a telephone campaign on Wednesday, calling constituents in the districts of 31 Republican members who support Fincher's bill.

Tea Partyers, backed by House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) and groups like Heritage Action, argue that the bank doles out "corporate welfare" and promotes "cronyism."


The bank's charter will expire on June 30 unless Congress votes to reauthorize it. Fincher's legislation, which he says would increase the bank's transparency, already has 57 GOP co-sponsors.

Centrist Republicans and Democrats say that Ex-Im helps to finance business deals in new markets while sustaining millions of U.S. jobs for small- and medium-sized businesses.

Some of the lawmakers Heritage Action officials are targeting have high ratings on the group's scorecard, which grades members' support of conservative causes backed by the organization.

GOP Reps. Randy Hultgren (Ill.), Billy Long (Mo.) and Joe WilsonAddison (Joe) Graves WilsonThe Hill Interview: Sanford says Trump GOP doing 'serious brand destruction' GOP lawmaker: 'Dangerous' abuse of Interpol by Russia, China, Venezuela Washington Post fact-checker gives Plame three Pinocchios for Libby claim MORE (S.C.), for example, each are scored with a rating of at least 70 percent. Fincher himself has a 66 percent rating.

Meanwhile, Export-Import Bank President Fred Hochberg is headed to Iowa and Ohio this week to campaign for the bank's reauthorization.

Hochberg is scheduled to meet with small-business leaders in Des Moines, Iowa, on Wednesday, where he'll be joined by Rep. Rod Blum (R-Iowa).

On Thursday, he'll appear in Detroit, meeting with business leaders and Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D-Mich.).

He'll end the week just outside of Toledo, Ohio, on Friday, where he'll be joined by Energy Secretary Ernest MonizErnest Jeffrey MonizAl Franken to host SiriusXM radio show Two years after Harvey's devastation, the wake-up call has not been heeded Biden under pressure from environmentalists on climate plan MORE and Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio). They will tour First Solar, a solar paneling business that has benefited from Ex-Im financing.

Hochberg has crisscrossed the country in recent months as he's fought to rally support for the bank's reauthorization.