Originally posted here.
Export-Import Bank officials have been playing lobbyists not only to U.S. lawmakers, but also to business owners. According to Washington Examiner’s Tim Carney, serving a dual purpose is far from cheap to the taxpayers sustaining the agency.
While rallying Congress to renewal the Ex-Im Bank’s charter, officials have been traveling all over the country to recruit businesses. According to a press release from the Export-Import Bank published last week, “[O]fficials from the Export-Import Bank of the U.S. (Ex-Im Bank) will hold a series of forums, discussions, and small-business stops to increase awareness among American small businesses of how the Export-Import Bank can help them boost their exports abroad, while creating jobs here at home.”
The travels may seem of little importance to supporters of the Ex-Im Bank, but the problem lies elsewhere; during 2012, for an instance, Ex-Im spent $2.7 million in travel expenses while budgeting $1.7 million.
During the next fiscal year, the agency budgeted $1.2 million and spent $2.2 million, but the year of 2014 has been just as concerning. According to The Hill, Ex-Im budgeted $1.3 million, but has already estimated that the total spending may reach the $2.3 million mark.
Officials attempting to boost the public support of the bank and encourage businesses to lobby for subsidies are the ones doing most of the traveling, which is essentially creating a vicious cycle.
So the agency is able to carry its deals, it requires more companies to ask for subsidies, which requires more taxpayer money. By claiming the bank creates jobs at home, Ex-Im Bank officials urge the public and lawmakers to offer their support. But how can that be since taxpayers are really being asked to subsidize businesses abroad?
This is all just a mad display of men in suits talking gibberish on our dime at this point.