In the Kochs’ invisible primary, the crop of GOP presidential wannabees are bending over backwards to win the financial backing of the electorate of two. An aide to the Kochs told the Daily Signal that opposition to the Export-Import Bank would be a key factor in determining whether a candidate would garner the billionaire brothers’ support.
Of course, the Kochs are opposed to the program because it gives small businesses an edge over their multi-national corporation, Koch Industries. Now the Kochs have set their sights on killing the bank through several of their organizations, including Americans for Prosperity, Freedom Partners, and the LIBRE Initiative.
The truth is the Ex-Im Bank’s mission is to protect American companies and give them a competitive edge abroad. For more than 80 years, it’s been a bipartisan program because it promotes American exports. Last year alone it supported 164,000 jobs here at home with no cost to taxpayers. The reauthorization of the Bank is set to expire in June — if Congress doesn’t act.
The Kochs have pledged to spend nearly $900 million on the 2016 election and the GOP hopefuls are squabbling for piece of it. Most of the field has rushed to call for an end to the institution, including Jeb Bush, Scott Walker, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, and Bobby Jindal. The coveted Koch endorsement will likely go to whichever contestant best caters to Koch priorities. Just last month, Rubio participated in a conference call with Koch-backed Americans for Prosperity to push for the death of the Export-Import Bank.
The billionaire sweepstakes in the GOP primary are on! How far will the GOP presidential field go to stay in the Kochs’ good graces?