Kratovil’s Bailout Bunk
MDGOP did a great job throwing cold water on Frank Kratovil’s first TV ad claiming his alleged independence from Nancy Pelosi and the Democratic majority.
Turns out Kratovil’s ad has more truthiness issues.
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At least five freshman Democratic House members are running ads claiming they voted against the bank “bailout,” when in fact none was in Congress when the bill setting up the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP, was enacted.
Mary Jo Kilroy says she “voted against the bank bailout.”
Kathy Dahlkemper says she voted “against a bailout that helped Wall
Frank Kratovil claims to have cast his vote in opposition
to “the big bank bailout.”
Dina Titus’ ad maintains she “even voted against the bank bailout.”
Glenn Nye’s ad tells viewers he went “against his own party” and “voted
against the Wall Street bailout.” …
Here’s what happened: As the law was structured, the treasury secretary (then Henry Paulson) had access to only $350 billion, half of the total package, at first. The second half would be available only if the administration went to Congress and asked for it. Treasury would get the money unless Congress said no. The first $350 billion of the TARP money was quickly spent.
By the time the Bush administration, at the request of President-elect Barack Obama, filed a request with the Senate for the rest of the money on Jan.
12, 2009, there were widespread complaints that too much of the first tranche had been used to bail out large institutions and not enough to help homeowners. The new funds could have been blocked had both houses of Congress voted to do so, but on Jan. 15, 2009, the Senate defeated a disapproval resolution, 52-42, effectively voting to release the funds. Treasury almost immediately announced it would use some of the money to shore up a deeply crippled Bank of America.
Where was the House in all this? Pretty much irrelevant. Eventually there was a similar vote in that body. Kilroy, Dahlkemper, Kratovil, Nye and Titus all voted for the disapproval resolution, and it passed, 270-155. But the vote came on Jan. 22, a week after the Senate’s vote (and two days after Obama was sworn in). Treasury already had the money.
In other words, these five — and everyone else who cast a yea or nay on the resolution — knew the vote on the unpopular program was purely symbolic.
Kratovil’s ludicrous bailout claim reminds me of the lame excuse he sent to constituents explaining his vote for cap and trade.
Opponents of a cap-and-trade regulatory system need to remember that we
already have cap-and-trade here in Maryland. Maryland has been part of a
regional cap-and-trade initiative since 2007, which has generated tens of
millions of dollars in revenue to the state to fund consumer rebates and energy
Kratovil is referring to RGGI which is nothing but an unnecessary energy tax, which just as the federal cap and trade bill, has no measurable effect on climate and provides carbon pork for environmental activist groups.
Yet more evidence that voters need to return Maryland’s first district to the Republican column.