The reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank is a bad idea on many levels. Yet, the Senate sneaked in a vote late Monday night to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank using a series of convoluted parliamentary procedures that blocked opposition and permitted the Export-Import Bank to bypass the normal law-making procedures.
In effect, the Senate Majority Leader advanced the Export-Import Bank as an amendment to the unrelated highway reauthorization bill, while at the same time forbidding every other amendment.
The Senate Majority Leader used the same parliamentary tricks that he despised when the Democrats were in the majority, which might have been defensible if he were doing something laudable like reforming entitlements or lowering the deficit. Instead, the Senate Majority Leader used the strong-arm parliamentary tactics to promote crony capitalism at the expense of taxpayers.
The highway bill, with the Export-Import Bank amendment attached, will now head over to the House of Representatives. We don’t endorse or oppose specific pieces of legislation, but we hope House leaders will recognize bad economic policy when they see it.