North Carolina House Speaker Thom Tillis, the Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in North Carolina, does not support the Export-Import Bank, which puts him at odds with the Chamber of Commerce.
Keep in mind that the Chamber of Commerce helped buoy Tillis’s candidacy in the divided Republican primary for Senate in North Carolina by pouring in $480,000 in spending to help Tillis in the weeks before the election, according to The Washington Post in April. But that hasn’t moved Tillis to support the bank.
“The Export-Import Bank is set up to play political favorites and give huge taxpayer handouts to big, billion-dollar corporations, a glaring example of what’s wrong with Washington,” Tillis spokesman Daniel Keylin said according to The New York Times on Monday.
Keylin added the North Carolina Republican nominee for U.S. Senate would only support the bank if changes were made aimed at helping small businesses.
The Export-Import bank, which offers loans to foreign buyers looking to purchase American goods, is a favorite target of some of the conservative outside groups that have helped create a divided and bloody landscape among establishment and tea-party backed Republicans this cycle. The Club for Growth, for instance, has aggressively attacked the bank and also lawmakers who support it.
The Times write-up notes that other lawmakers supported by the Chamber of Commerce also oppose reauthorization, such as Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY). The Chamber said that doesn’t mean there’s any kind of disconnect.
“We are not a single-issue organization,” Chamber spokeswoman Blair Latoff Holmes said according to the Times. She said her group considers a number of issues when deciding which candidate to support. “Over all, if you look at the Democrats’ position on issues such as tax rates, regulations, energy and the E.P.A., unions, free speech and trial lawyers, you can see why the chamber supports the members that we do.”
(H/t: Dave Weigel)