Press Releases

McHenry Statement on Repurposing ESF Funds

Washington, December 16, 2020 -

Today, the top Republican on the House Financial Services Committee, Patrick McHenry (NC-10), issued the following statement on the funds appropriated by Congress in the CARES Act remaining in the Exchange Stabilization Fund (ESF) and how that money should be repurposed:

"In March, I pushed for $500 billion in the CARES Act to backstop the economy through the Exchange Stabilization Fund and won. This allowed our financial markets to operate with a safety net, with the Fed acting as lender of last resort—not market maker—in vital segments of our economy. Chairman Powell and Secretary Mnuchin have done a remarkable job during this unprecedented year, with their stewardship of the ESF being just one example. They should be commended for following Congressional intent and delivering for the American people.

“While the ESF money served as a key insurance policy in unknown times, we now have nine months of experience, allowing us to better understand where targeted relief is still needed. We also now know Democrats want to use this remaining money to bail-out poorly managed blue states and cities which were in deep financial distress long before this pandemic. This is a bad idea that goes against Congress’ intent. Our expectation was always that the Fed should not be making fiscal decisions, but rather sticking to monetary policy and serving as a lender of last resort.

“With this in mind, it is clear a much smaller ESF is warranted. We should come together to repurpose the ESF funding to provide targeted support for our small businesses and their workers. We’ve done it before and we can, and must, do it again."

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