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Trump picks critic to lead Ex-Im Bank he once opposed

Trump picks critic to lead Ex-Im Bank he once opposed

After expressing support for the Export-Import Bank, President Donald Trump made a decision to nominate a vocal critic to run the official export credit agency of the US government.

After describing the Ex-Im bank, which guarantees loans for companies that export United States products, as "featherbedding" for politicians and wealthy corporations such as Boeing, President Trump has nominated a conservative former Republican lawmaker as its next president.

Garrett voted in 2012 and in 2015 against renewing the charter of the Ex-Im Bank, which guarantees loans for companies that export US products.

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The bank has become a popular target for conservatives, who have worked in Congress to kill the bank, arguing that it perpetuates cronyism and does little to create American jobs.

A product of the New Deal, the bank primarily provides financing for USA companies looking to sell their goods overseas when private funding is not available.

But this week Trump announced he'd changed his mind, telling The Wall Street Journal in an interview that he now supports it.

"I don't like it because I don't think it's necessary", he told Bloomberg, describing it as "sort of a featherbedding for politicians" and "a few companies".

"I don't like it because I don't think it's necessary", Trump said.

Bachus, a former chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, has previously backed the Ex-Im Bank, sponsoring a 2012 law that reauthorized the bank. "When other countries give it, we lose a tremendous amount of business". After bipartisan support for a renewal of the bank's charter, conservatives then blocked nominees to the board.

"Instinctively, you would say, 'Isn't that a ridiculous thing, ' " the president told The Wall Street Journal.

"Actually, it's a very good thing".

In 2015 the bank authorized just $5 billion in new financing and posted a profit of $284 million. "And it actually makes money, it could make a lot of money". But Democrats and more moderate Republicans appreciate the Export-Import Bank, and want to see it revived.

Conservative groups including Club for Growth, Heritage Action and Americans for Prosperity have long opposed the bank, saying it promotes crony capitalism. The bank's critics have called it "the bank of Boeing" because of the extent of support it has received over the years.

With a board shortage, the 82-year-old agency authorized only $5 billion in financing in fiscal 2016, the lowest level in almost 40 years, compared with $20 billion in 2014, the last year the bank was fully operational.


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