As House Republicans prepare to leave town for a nearly six-week summer recess, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), Ranking Member of the Financial Services Committee, took the party to task for failing to take any action to re-open the Export-Import Bank, which has been shut down for nearly a month.
Waters blasted Republicans for voting against a procedural motion called the “previous question,” which would have forced a vote on legislation to extend the Bank’s charter through 2019. The legislation was identical to the measure that passed the U.S. Senate earlier this week by a vote of 64 to 29, and is also the very language offered just yesterday in the Rules Committee by Republican Congressman Stephen Fincher (TN), which was not made in order by a narrow vote of 6-7.
Waters made the following statement:
“I am deeply disappointed that House Republicans have decided to rush out of town for nearly six weeks without taking action to renew the Export-Import Bank’s charter. Not only is the GOP leaving behind the unfinished business of the Bank, it’s leaving behind American workers, American businesses, American competitiveness and the American economy.
I’m astonished that today, even Republicans who support the Bank refused to side with Democrats on a procedural vote that would have forced consideration of the very legislation they put forward to open its doors just one day ago. If Republicans simply chose American jobs over party loyalty today, this Ex-Im nightmare would already be over.
Already, the month-long shutdown of this critical agency has put as many as 116 transactions worth $9.3 billion in financing indefinitely on hold. These deals create jobs and help our businesses grow. And they reach every community across the nation, in every congressional district, including my own.
We've already seen the impact of this shutdown on small businesses, which have lost contracts and opportunities because of the uncertain future of the Bank. Today, as Congress leaves town, we know those detrimental impacts will continue through August and into September at the least.
But despite this harm, and despite the wide majorities in the House and the U.S. Senate on record in support of a long-term reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank, Speaker Boehner and House Republicans have refused to allow the House an opportunity for an up-or-down vote to re-open the Bank’s doors. This obstruction will do nothing more than inflict additional damage on our businesses, their workers, the economy, and the American taxpayer.
By continuing to heed the direction of the most conservative wing of their party, Republicans are waving a white flag of surrender to our competitors overseas and robbing the American taxpayers of more than two billion dollars in profit over the next four years.”