The Corner

Economy & Business

Belated Happy Labor Day: Union Guy Gets a Seat on Ex-Im Board

I just realized that President Biden tapped Owen Herrnstadt to serve on the board of directors at the Export-Import Bank. Herrnstadt is chief of staff to the president at the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW).

That’s not just a union seat, that is a Boeing seat on the board with IAMAW representing some 22 percent of Boeing employees. Some 35 percent of Boeing employees are in a union.

Many of us over the years have referred to Ex-Im as the Bank of Boeing since the manufacturer is Ex-Im’s favorite domestic beneficiary. It was just a matter of time before Boeing formalized the relationship with a seat on the board.

Now, I cannot wait to hear how Herrnstadt will rationalize the bank’s continuing to throw money at a large corporation that raised $25 billion on private capital markets in April 2020 — just as the pandemic was unfolding — while small businesses were going through the headache of applying for a PPP loan.

Hernnstadt’s nomination is another win for the big guy.


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