Thursday, September 11, 2014

The Export-Import Bank Bunk Funk

Reminder: Orange Julius has one job, and that's to keep his Wall Street buddies happy whenever there's a fight between them and the section of the Tea Party that's pretending the GOP isn't a wholly owned subsidiary of corporate America.

Wall Street likes the Export-Import bank because it's government money that allows companies to get cheap taxpayer loans, although the Tea Party wanted to shut it down to force companies to use the big banks instead for capital loans for imports and exports.  Turns out the whole point of the Export-Import Bank is to use the power of the US government to get cheap loans, so the two evils are "Taxpayers are on the hook when the loans go bad"  versus "Wall Street megabanks would make billions without the Export-Import bank because the bulk of the loans are good".  The bank actually does make enough money to keep itself in business.  Hey, somebody's got to cover all those "machine parts to Thailand" deals, right?

That brings us back to Orange Julius.  The Tea Party is pretending the Export-Import Bank is evil and want to let its charter expire at the end of the month, when they just want to get the loan business for the banks that own the Tea Party (grassroots my ass). Orange Julius happily screwed them over on that.

Republican leaders in the House of Representatives will propose extending the U.S. Export-Import Bank's charter through June 30 next year, a Republican aide said on Tuesday, granting a temporary reprieve for the export lender. 
The extension would be added to a bill to temporarily fund the U.S. government after Sept. 30, the House Republican aide said. That could come up for a vote as early as Thursday. 
Speaker John Boehner said earlier that Representative Jeb Hensarling, a key opponent of the bank, now "thinks a temporary extension of the Export-Import Bank is in order" - removing a key obstacle to the bank remaining open. 
Hensarling, an influential Texas conservative who chairs the House Financial Services Committee, has been highly critical of the bank and has accused it of crony capitalism and favoring big business. He had proposed letting its mandate expire - a prospect worrying many in the business community.

An extension through mid-2015 - longer than the end-2014 time frame many had envisaged - would remove the threat of closure on Oct. 1, when the bank's current mandate runs out, and give businesses reliant on Ex-Im programs some breathing room.

So now Boehner has punted until June 30, and he's counting on a much friendlier Senate by then to work out whatever deal he needs to keep the bank going.  The Tea Party will complain and moan, but they're not stupid enough to kill the budget resolution due September 30 and shut down the government six weeks before midterm elections, right?

I mean...right?

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