It’s been 20 days since the FBI raided the headquarters of Solyndra, the bankrupt stimulus-back solar energy company. For twenty days the President’s advisers have decided to keep him in the dark about what led the company to squander $535 million of taxpayer money.
But there was one briefing about the mismanaged loan program—in October 2010, that is. Yes, news broke yesterday that the President’s advisers—namely Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and then-National Economic Council Director Larry Summers—warned the President that funds might land in the hands of unworthy companies.
As the Los Angeles Times reported, Geithner and Summers feared the selection process was not sufficiently rigorous. In their view, that meant stimulus money might end up in the hands of companies unable to pay it back. They took their concerns directly to President Obama. He listened to their warnings, but the loan program continued. Less than a year later, Solyndra went bankrupt.
Americans deserve answers. It’s time for the President to take responsibility. It’s bad enough that his advisers haven’t briefed him about Solyndra’s bankruptcy, but it’s even worse that the President has not demanded answers. Instead of spending his time leading campaign rallies in chanting “pass this bill,” he should tell the American people why he passed the buck.
Then there’s a bigger question: How many more Solyndras are there? To how many other failing companies did the White House funnel money? The President must learn the lessons of this latest stimulus failure, lest he be doomed to repeat them.
On GOP.com, you can keep track of how long it’s been since those FBI raids—and how long President Obama has avoided answering the tough questions.