|RedState Morning Briefing
For May 14, 2012
There are a number of facts surrounding the Solyndra story that don’t seem to be getting any attention. A significant part of the public outrage regarding the bankrupt company isn’t centered on their failed business model or external factors; it’s the millions of taxpayer dollars that the Obama Administration lost on Solyndra after the business was doomed.
After Solyndra defaulted and they knew Solyndra was in real financial trouble, Secretary Steven Chu’s Department of Energy (DOE) staff made a decision by December 10, 2010, to subordinate $75 million of taxpayer money so more private capital could be injected into Solyndra. Subordination means that outside private investors are given superiority over taxpayers in the event of bankruptcy. At that point, $440 million of the $535 million loan guarantee already had been pumped into the company.
By law Secretary Chu wasn’t allowed to subordinate the taxpayers’ money. The Energy Policy Act of 2005 specifically states that the loan guarantee “shall be subject to the condition that the obligation is not subordinate to other financing.” It was the clear intention of Congress that taxpayers should be reimbursed first.
For a company that had already been declared in default and had a collapsed business model because the Chinese were selling their solar panels for less, one might question the sanity of private investors who gambled on Solyndra in December of 2010. Were they after Solyndra’s intellectual property (IP) rights? As a private investor and the dominant financier, could Argonaut’s support of President Obama have helped them secure Solyndra’s IP assets?
IMAGINE A GOVERNMENT agency designed for the specific purpose of investigating and preventing the unlawful use, manufacture, and possession of firearms. Now imagine this agency engaging in an operation that not only goes against that purpose, but actually seeks to accomplish the opposite, by actively encouraging the sale of firearms to people whose ties to organized crime and gun violence are well known– and that this operation involves sending firearms across an international border into a country that this agency, and the government of which it is a part, purposely failed to warn, inform, or request permission from.
That, in a nutshell, is the Obama administration’s “Fast and Furious” program, whose development, bloody results, and ongoing cover–up are comprehensively documented and presented by investigative journalist Katie Pavlich in her new book, Fast and Furious: Barack Obama’s Bloodiest Scandal and its Shameless Cover–Up (Regnery, 2012). In the book’s ten chapters and 222 pages (of which nearly sixty are appendices and meticulously cited endnotes), Pavlich makes the case that the Obama administration’s “gunwalking” operation “wasn’t a ‘botched’ program, [but] a calculated and lethal decision” by the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, with the full knowledge and assent of the Departments of Justice and of Homeland Security, “to purposely place thousands of guns into the hands of ruthless criminals” (p. 162).
Obama’s energy policies are a key vulnerability in the November elections, which has his staff scrambling to make it look like he’s actually done something to support domestic energy production. Since neither he nor anyone in his Administration knows the first thing about oil and gas, that can lead to some pretty ridiculous claims.
I know many RedState readers are big fans of Jim DeMint, so in my coverage of the Retransmission Consent debate, I’ve focused on him. However he’s not the whole story. This Congress, due to the TEA party-driven Republican majority, it’s been the House where our major regulatory reform successes have happened. And it’s Steve Scalise, Republican of Louisiana and Bobby Jindal’s successor in the House, who is the champion of the Next Generation TV Marketplace Act there.
However I know that there have been skeptics on this reform, so I was fortunately able to snag some of the Congressman’s time, and ask him a few questions about the proposed reforms.
Florida officials have discovered that 180,000 registered voters may be non-citizens.
A CBS4/Miami Herald analysis of information supplied by Miami-Dade shows a large number of the potential non-citizens voters cast ballots in the past — including the 2000 election, when the presidency was decided by just over 500 votes.
According to Deputy Supervisor of Elections Christina White, there are a “lot of non-citizens on our registration rolls.”
Florida’s Division of Elections is checking the citizenship of voters by comparing drivers license records, which show whether a licensed driver is also a U.S. citizen.
When you’re done with the briefing, don’t forget to check out Caleb’s daily links from around the web.