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Sen. McCaskill Says Not Reauthorizing Export-Import Bank Would Hurt Missouri Businesses

Elle Moxley

Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill toured a Kansas City manufacturing company Wednesday before calling on Congress to reauthorize the United States Export-Import Bank.

The bank helps finance and insure overseas purchases of American-made goods.

According to McCaskill, 96 Missouri companies currently use the Export-Import Bank, including Western Forms. The Kansas City company sells aluminum molds to pour concrete houses and does about half of its business abroad.

But some Republicans don't want to reauthorize the bank because they say it's handing some companies a government subsidy. If Congress doesn't reauthorize the bank before Sept. 30, it won't be able to approve new financing for buyers of U.S. products abroad.

Republican Sen. Roy Blunt supports the bank's reauthorization. McCaskill, a Democrat, says she hopes the rest of Missouri's congressional delegation will do the same.

"The very people who want to preach free market want to hamper the country that is showing the rest of the world how we do free market, because the competitors aren't free-market companies," says McCaskill. "The competitors in India and Mexico and all of these places, or China, are totally subsidized by their government."

McCaskill rejects the argument that using the Export-Import Bank is akin to receiving a government subsidy.

"This company is as free market as it gets," McCaskill says of Western Forms, whose owners describe their political leanings as conservative. "They're having to make their payroll without any government help."

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