Republican presidential hopefuls who want the financial backing of the conservative billionaire Koch brothers will need to campaign against the Export-Import Bank, according to The Daily Signal.
The bank serves as an export credit agency for businesses that want to sell abroad. It describes itself
as creating jobs by providing capital and insurance for foreign purchases of United States' goods.
The Kochs' position is that the bank provides corporate welfare, disrupts the free market, and — citing Boeing as an example — plays favorites.
An aide to Charles and David Koch told the Signal that opposition to the Export-Import Bank would be a key factor in whether a candidate garnered the brothers' support.
"Corporate welfare is a growing monster that we have to tackle," the aide said.
The brothers are months away from making an endorsement, though they have signaled they might not wait until after the Republican convention in July 2016.
They are looking closely at Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, according to USA Today
Bush, Rubio, Paul and Cruz have already been lauded
by the brothers for opposing the bank. Walker is also on record
as wanting to eliminate the bank.
Charles Koch told USA Today that he and his brother informed the candidates "that if they want our support, one way to get it is articulating a good message to help Americans get a better understanding and a better appreciation of how certain policies … will benefit them and will benefit all America."
In an aside during a talk at the Union League Club in New York, David Koch appeared to imply that the brothers favored Walker, according to The New York Times.
"My brother and I are going to take a neutral position as to who we are going to support until the primaries are over … in the summer of next year, so when the primaries are over and Scott Walker gets the nomination, well … "
He was interrupted by clapping and laughter before he added: "Then we will support."
David Koch followed up with a statement to the Signal reiterating that, "While I think Governor Walker is terrific, let me be clear I am not endorsing or supporting any candidate for president at this point in time."
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