Congressman Andy Barr (KY-6) today voted against renewing the charter of the Export-Import Bank, which expired on June 30, 2015. The Bank offers taxpayer-backed loans and guarantees purportedly to support U.S. exports, but has been criticized for politicized lending, internal corruption, cronyism, handing out taxpayer dollars to foreign governments and corporations at the expense of American competitors, and providing an unfair advantage to large corporations over smaller exporters.
“As a member of the House Committee on Financial Services, the congressional panel with authorizing jurisdiction over the Export-Import Bank, I have had the unique opportunity to closely examine the operations of the Bank through nearly three years of investigation, multiple oversight hearings, and many meetings with interested parties,” said Congressman Barr. “I have listened carefully to arguments on both sides of this issue and I have learned that while the Bank arguably supports some export opportunities for a small universe of politically-connected, mostly large corporations, it does so at the expense of American jobs and by placing hard-earned taxpayer dollars at risk. Further, the Bank’s politicized lending practices, which smack of cronyism, have systematically discriminated against certain Kentucky-based companies. Corporate welfare is not how a free market economy is supposed to work.”
“The Export-Import Bank is a broken institution. Expiration of its charter would ensure that taxpayer dollars are not used to pick winners and losers among domestic industries, while helping level the playing field to ensure opportunity for all Americans and favoritism to none.”