Thursday morning, the Senate voted to advance
Trade Promotion Authority for the Trans-Pacific Partnership, but getting to cloture was a challenge. Ultimately, the price for some Democratic lawmakers to give their support was a promise from Republican leadership
that they would forward an extension of the Export-Import Bank, the federally backed bank that provides assistance to U.S. corporations selling their goods abroad. They got that assurance, including from House Speaker John Boehner
Speaker John Boehner said if the Senate passes an extension of the Export-Import Bank he would allow the bill to come to the House floor under an "open amendment process."
The plan, which Boehner said he laid out for House Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling of Texas, would test support for the government-backed institution. There are sure to be amendments to end, wind down and reform the bank, which guarantees loans for companies doing business overseas.
Meanwhile, the Club for Growth is stepping up with attack ads against House Republicans
who support the extension of the Ex-Im Bank.
The ads will begin Friday in the home districts of Reps. David McKinley of West Virginia, Rob Bishop and Chris Stewart of Utah, and Bill Shuster of Pennsylvania, a spokesman for the group said Wednesday.
The spots, which will air on both broadcast and cable networks, are part of $1 million campaign from the Club timed to coincide with Congress's debate over reauthorizing the Ex-Im Bank. (The bank is better described as a government credit agency that backs loans to foreign entities as incentive to sign deals with U.S. companies. The Club sees this as corporate welfare.) […]
In the TV spots, the lawmakers are criticized for supporting a "petri dish of corruption and graft." In Bishop and Stewart's case, they are compared unfavorably to fellow Republican colleagues Sens. Mike Lee and Orrin Hatch. In West Virginia, the Club said McKinley supported a program backed by Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.
That last bit is pretty funny, the comparison with Orrin Hatch. Because the TPA bill is being managed in the Senate by Hatch, who had to have agreed with having this Ex-Im Bank vote to move TPA forward. Nonetheless, tea party Republicans in the House will probably tank the Ex-Im Bank extension, making this demand from Democrats to support TPA look pretty pointless.