House Democrats suddenly find themselves allied with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other business groups, launching an aggressive campaign Tuesday to save the Export-Import Bank from conservative lawmakers who want to close it.
Democratic leaders are getting behind legislation that would reauthorize the Export-Import Bank, which is set to expire at the end of September, Politico reported.
"Congress must take bipartisan action before the Export-Import Bank's authorization expires so that we can give certainty to businesses and provide important resources to keep American exporters competitive. To do otherwise would greatly hurt our businesses and our economy," said House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, Maryland Democrat.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and National Association of Manufacturers are supporting the bill by Rep. Denny Heck, Washington Democrat.
The legislation would extend the bank's charter for seven years with $175 billion to spend on boosting exports by some of the countries biggest companies, including Boeing, Caterpillar and GE.
Some House Republicans, including incoming Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California, oppose continuing the 80-year-old bank because they view it as corporate welfare.
Mr. Heck stressed that the Export-Import Bank helps small business, too.
"The Export-Import Bank is a reliable way for American business — including many small businesses — to sell their goods and services into the world marketplace," he said. "If we abandon this resource, we are allowing China, Russia and European countries to gain ground in export deals previously made with us."
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