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Ex-Im Backers Find Path Forward in House

Download: Printable PDF Date: 12 Oct 2015 12:42 categories:
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Ex-Im Backers Find Path Forward in House - Finance publisher
Tatjana Obrazcova
Country: United States
Source: AIN

Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im) reauthorization legislation, long stalled in the U.S. House of Representative, received a boost last week when lawmakers turned to a little-used procedure called a discharge petition to bypass the committee to bring the bill to a floor vote. The maneuver is rarely used and even more rarely successful since it requires 218 signatures. But it was the same procedure used a little more than 20 years ago to force a vote on the General Aviation Revitalization Act. In that case, the House Judiciary Committee agreed to act on the bill when it became apparent that the GARA discharge petition would be successful.

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), the ranking Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee, last week became the 218th signature on the Ex-Im discharge petition, setting the bill up for a full House vote likely later this month. The Ex-Im Bank’s charter expired at the end of June, preventing the body from approving any new loan guarantees. Aviation manufacturers have urged renewal, saying it is causing lost business that will lead to loss of jobs and create an unlevel playing field. “There's no question that the lapse of Ex-Im's charter has already done damage to American businesses and workers and to our economic recovery,” Waters said. 

Waters’ Republican counterpart, Rep. Jeb Hensarling (Texas), remained opposed to Ex-Im renewal and said the discharge petition “is the exact opposite of regular order.” While the discharge petition revives hope of House passage, the bill still faces an uncertain future in the Senate.

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