WASHINGTON â€“ U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) applauded the Senateâ€™sÂ 67-26Â vote toÂ invoke cloture onÂ his legislationÂ to reauthorize and reform the Export-Import Bank. A vote on final passageÂ of Kirk Amendment #2327 to the highway billÂ will beÂ heldÂ tomorrow, Monday, July 27th.
â€œThe Kirk-Heitkamp bill to keep the Ex-Im Bank open cleared a major hurdleÂ today, and we are one step closerÂ toÂ keeping American jobs here in America and not lost to countries like China.”
Senator Kirk and Senator Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) introduced the Export-Import Bank Reform and Reauthorization Act (S. 819) earlier this year. In aÂ testÂ vote on the bill in the form of aÂ KirkÂ amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act, 65 Senators supported reauthorizing Ex-Im, and Senator Kirk worked to get todayâ€™s vote in order to reauthorize the Bank, whose charter expired June 30th.Â TheÂ U.S.Â Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers are in support of the Kirk-Heitkamp legislation.
Nearly 90 percent of Ex-Im’s transactions each year directly benefit small businesses, and nationwide the bank supports more than 205,000 American jobs,Â including 47,000 in Illinois. The top Illinois companies supported by Ex-Im are The Boeing Company, CNH Industrial America and Caterpillar. The Export-Import Bank supports 244 Illinois businesses,Â such asÂ Boeing, and operates with no cost to the taxpayer. In the pastÂ threeÂ years, the bank has returned nearly $3 billion to the U.S. Treasury. The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that the Kirk-Heitkamp bill would save taxpayers $2.3 billion.