Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) announced yesterday the Senate Banking Committee will not consider the nomination of NCUA board member J. Mark McWatters to the Export-Import Bank board. As a result, the only way McWatters could be confirmed is for Senate Republican leaders to decide to take the nomination directly to the Senate floor.
Shelby said the Senate passed legislation reauthorizing the bank without his committee’s approval and that it could do the same with the McWatters’ nomination.
If McWatters is not confirmed, he would retain his seat on the NCUA board. If he is confirmed, the NCUA board would be left with one member – Chairman Rick Metsger, a Democrat.
In March, Shelby said a decision on whether to move the nomination of McWatters depended on whether the administration nominates a vice chairman of supervision at the Federal Reserve. However, Shelby said Tuesday that he will not move on the nomination under any circumstances. He said he is fundamentally opposed to the idea of the Export-Import Bank.
Senate Banking Committee ranking Democrat Sherrod Brown of Ohio said he has continually pressed Shelby on the nomination, adding that the bank has a large backlog because it cannot approve transactions of more than $10 million because it does not have a sufficient number of members.
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