Under the Dome

Business conservatives thank Ellmers on Ex-Im Bank stance

A conservative nonprofit group called Main Street Advocacy is buying radio and digital ads this week in North Carolina thanking U.S. Rep. Renee Ellmers for supporting the Export-Import Bank.

The campaign, focused on Ellmers’ 2nd Congressional District, comes as a House vote to reauthorize the bank is expected in coming weeks. The Senate authorized it over the weekend.

The bank, a federal agency that helps United States companies sell their products overseas, is opposed by conservatives who see it as corporate welfare. Supporters, such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, say it will be harder to compete without it.

The bank expired June 30 because Congress didn’t renew its charter.

The Club for Growth, another conservative nonprofit group, has been running ads criticizing Ellmers and several other Republican representatives across the country for their support of the bank.

The Main Street Advocacy ads, thanking Ellmers for “standing up to the Chinese,” were unveiled Tuesday. A spokesman said it was a five-figure ad buy concentrated on the Raleigh and Fayetteville areas.

“Renee Ellmers has been a tireless advocate for North Carolina jobs and fiscal responsibility, and that’s what this debate is really about,” Sarah Chamberlain, chief operating officer for Main Street Advocacy, said in a statement. “The Ex-Im Bank directly supports over 160,000 American jobs while earning $674 million last year alone that went directly to the U.S. Treasury for deficit reduction. Washington needs more leaders like Renee Ellmers who will stand up for their constituents and not the special interest groups in Washington.”