In this short post about a couple of Republicans’ outrage over the AIG bonuses, Suzy Khimm provides everything you need to know to get a very clear image of how some in the Republican party are doing and saying anything just because it’s opposite to what Obama said/believes/wants, or because it’s an opportunity to point the finger and holler like a petulant child. (Ronald Brownstein could write a whole new chapter about this, no doubt…)
Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senators Jim DeMint and James Inhofe all come in for a lashing, as their positions are so transparently partisan (or they just didn’t think things through, reacting in the first knee-jerk way they could think of) to blame Obama and Geithner for the excessive bonuses.
“What was once emblematic of a free-market economy – the ability of private industry to determine its wages - is now the sign of a Democrat-led ‘fiasco’ caused by a ‘lack of transparency and accountability,’ in the words of DeMint’s letter to the Banking Committee. Of course, there are plenty of good reasons to be steamed about AIG's bonuses, but it sure would be nice if Senate Republicans spared us the rank hypocrisy next time.”
My own humble opinion? The AIG bonuses should never have been given. The company’s received somewhere in the region of $150 billion in Federal Bailout money – this is not the situation when you give out bonuses!
As President Obama put it in Costa Mesa, California:
“It’s hard to understand that a company that is relying on extraordinary assistance from taxpayers to keep its doors open would be paying anyone lavish bonuses. It goes against our most basic sense of what is fair and what is right. It offends our values.”