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GOP criticizes government over handling of AIG bonuses

March 20, 2009 by  

GOP criticizes government over handling of AIG bonuses In reaction to the bill that imposes a tax on bailed-out companies’ bonus recipients, a Republican congressman has said the move may be ‘legally questionable.’

On Thursday the House overwhelmingly approved the legislation that will impose 90 percent surtax on any bonus paid after Dec. 31, 2008, by a company that received $5 billion or more in taxpayer money from the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

Any current or former employee whose family income exceeds $250,000 will be subject to the tax.

"The Democratic bill is constitutionally questionable," said Representative Mike Pence (Indiana), quoted by newsmax.com, adding that the Obama administration is trying to deflect attention from the fact that it had allowed the bonuses to be paid in the first place.

Earlier this week New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo revealed that AIG, which received $170 billion in bailout funds, paid $165 million in bonuses and compensation, including to traders at its financial products division whose activities contributed to the near-collapse of the financial system.

This prompted the White House and many members of Congress to call for an excise tax on the bonuses, a reaction that culminated in Thursday’s vote.

In the meantime, however, it became clear that clauses included in the bailout deals allowed for pre-existing bonus contracts to be honored.

As a result, Republicans have been calling for Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner to step down.
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  • http://yahoo Samuel Walker

    Obama’s Lies — and YOUR Money

    Dear Fellow Conservative,

    Ann CoulterYou know what really irritates me about liberals? (Besides the fact that they’re spineless little girls in pretty dresses who can’t play rough because it musses up their hair…)

    They always think liberalism fixes the problem — even when it was liberalism that caused the problem in the first place!

    Case in point, the Financial Meltdown of 2008 (and counting). To hear liberals tell it, it all goes back to Ronald Reagan — who with his seductive “B-actor” charm fooled America into thinking that by slashing taxes, regulation, and government spending we could unleash free enterprise and create a new wave of prosperity.

    Sure, liberals concede, that seemed to work for, oh, the better part of three decades, but now we’re paying the price for all that “greed.” The solution? A return to the pre-Reagan policies of Jimmy Carter, LBJ, FDR… Speaking of which, what will victory look like in the “War on Poverty”? When are they going to produce an “exit strategy” from that quagmire?

    Unfortunately, the facts — as always when you’re talking about liberal theories — tell a different story. A story in which all the major villains, it turns out, have one thing in common: government.

    That’s right. From the “Community Reinvestment Act” that pressured banks into affirmative-action lending, to those “government-sponsored enterprises” Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — who bought up all the resulting subprime loans and repackaged them as “investment grade” securities — the greasy thumb-prints of government were all over this fiasco from beginning to end.

    But those, as I say, are facts. And facts have no place in the fantasy world of Democratic policy-makers. Nor does history — true history, that is, as opposed to the public-school propaganda that teaches, for instance, that FDR’s New Deal got us out of the Great Depression, when in reality it only deepened and prolonged it.

    But the question remains: What can those of us in the fast-dwindling, Reality-Based Community do to survive financially as the Obamacrats prepare a “New New Deal” that threatens to outspend the original by about ten thousand to one?

  • John

    The AIG ‘controvercy was manufactured by the Obama administration. It was a strawman designed to whip up anti-capitalists feelings among people so the government….”acting for the good of the people” can sieze control of pay for ALL businesses and their employees.That is the real objective. WAKE UP AMERICA !

  • http://microsoft Robert

    I think that nobody should be making more than $60,000 a year per family. the unions has detroyed the country ,along with the dishonest politicans that are put in office.

    • Lisa

      Robert: What are you talking about? You can stay at $60K a year until Hell freezes over, but excuse me, I want to make more and to prosper. Did you ever extend yourself (like go to school) in order to make more money or are you one of those lazy dumbasses who stay at home and collect welfare and food stamps? I, for one, think you are part of the problem in our society today. You want to limit people to making a meager salary and to thwart any idea of prosperity. Please, will you leave us capitalistic-thinking people alone and squalor away in your pitiful life, thank you very much. Also, Obama is looking for people to fill positions in his Treasury. Maybe you’re qualified for that job…

      • SSG Prasuhn

        My! My! Feelling a bit ‘SNOBBISH’ today are we, Lisa??

        I hate to tell you, but it’s the SNOBS that are ruining our country. They seem to have the ‘ME! ME! ME! ME! MINE!, ME FIRST and to hell with anyone else mentality. Now, is THAT any way to ‘advance’? Aren’t we ALL in this MESS together? Ever heard of the term ‘TEAM WORK’??

        Robert is right…NO ONE should make more than the President and Congress should NOT be allowed to VOTE in their OWN pay raises.

        REMEMBER — THEY WORK FOR US! WE should be the ones to decide how much ‘they’ make, NOT THEM!! Personally, at the rate they (Congress AND the House of (our ‘so called’) Representatives don’t seem to be earning any where near what they’re being paid right now!! I say FIRE THEM ALL and get some NEW BLOOD in there — Like Corporate America does when the wages seem to be too much to bear…they lay off or fire a bunch and then bring in ‘new’ employees who will ‘start out’ at a lower pay scale. Yeah! Rah! Corporate America and Capitalism. NOT!!

        Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for someone ‘climbing the ladder’ of success, but the ‘added’ (?) ‘GRAB ALL, TAKE ALL attitude HAS TO STOP!!! NO ONE can handle IT ALL, nor deserves IT ALL. Never have and never will!

        ‘Nuff Said’,

        • Lisa

          No, not feeling snobbish, just feeling the freedom allowed me by the Constitution of the United States. So, it’s the snobs ruining this country…do you include in your list of snobs our new Prez??? If you don’t think he’s a snob, then you’re sniffing something in the paint. By the way, I don’t give a hoot what you think about me and never will. I am my own person and I do not look to you or anyone to take care of me or my family. But, I am sure you are a very perfect person always doing the right thing. Well, good luck keeping that going. I hope you will be able to make it on $60,000 a year. Personally, I think anyone who has the education and/or opportunity to make a lot of money should have every right to do so. By the way, I don’t have to capitalize or boldize to make my point. I feel you’re shouting at me…what, did I touch on a nerve…you being a liberal demo, I suppose? Have you ever listened to a conservative talk show where they have liberal guests…they have to shout, butt-in and over speak any opposition to their viewpoint? I think you would be a perfect guest on “Hannity.” I’d love to see what you actually look like. Yuck, the vision I just had of you made me throw up in my mouth…

      • SSG Prasuhn

        You wrote (on March 24th, 2009 at 1:10 pm)…”No, not feeling snobbish, just feeling the freedom allowed me by the Constitution of the United States. So, it’s the snobs ruining this country…do you include in your list of snobs our new Prez??? If you don’t think he’s a snob, then you’re sniffing something in the paint. By the way, I don’t give a hoot what you think about me and never will. I am my own person and I do not look to you or anyone to take care of me or my family. But, I am sure you are a very perfect person always doing the right thing. Well, good luck keeping that going. I hope you will be able to make it on $60,000 a year. Personally, I think anyone who has the education and/or opportunity to make a lot of money should have every right to do so. By the way, I don’t have to capitalize or boldize to make my point. I feel you’re shouting at me…what, did I touch on a nerve…you being a liberal demo, I suppose? Have you ever listened to a conservative talk show where they have liberal guests…they have to shout, butt-in and over speak any opposition to their viewpoint? I think you would be a perfect guest on “Hannity.” I’d love to see what you actually look like. Yuck, the vision I just had of you made me throw up in my mouth…”

        Yep, it’s the snobs…and yes, I DO include the ‘Prez’ and his ‘silver-plated’ tongue. Sorry to burst your bubble but I am NOT a ‘liberal demo’. I claim NO political party — they’re ALL crooks! The only good politician is a dead politician in my book. The world would be a better place all-around without them – much like lawyers.

        The ‘boldizing’, etc. you referred to is NOT shouting unless it’s ALL in ‘CAPS’, etc. Otherwise, it’s only ‘emphasizing’ a point.

        Yes, I’ve listened to some of the talk shows you asked about. NO I don’t care for their attitudes either.

        Sorry your ‘imagination’ of me made you sick. Guess that means you have a ‘sick imagination’, right?

        Oh! By the way, I’d be ‘happy as hell’ with $60,000.00 a year salary or wages. I could live quite comfortably on that, but then I’d end up having to pay more of the ‘illegal’ income taxes on it.

        ‘Nuff Said’,

    • Robin from Indiana

      Are you kidding me???? Why shouldn’t people make what they can? I hate unions and think they are a bigger part of this problem than we know. They are greedy and protect those who produce shoddy work and are incapable. Dishonest politicians should be ousted when caught! But back to your first statement. There does not need to be a cap on what a person can earn. That’s free enterprise and the way things are/ used to be in the United States. When that changes is when we are in a socialist environment. I do not want a socialist government. I am sure you didn’t mean that!

  • Mike from Kansas

    Can someone explain why the Attorney General of New York is investigating the bonuses? Is he running for reelection?

  • Bob

    So many people don’t seem to understand what “socialism” means or how to identify actions meant to promote it. VP Joe Biden the call redistribution of wealth “fairness.”

    This means that if I grow a peach orchard over the course of several years, using my land and paying for cultivation and water, with my and my childrens’ labor to weed and pick the fruit, he wants me to invite all the neighbors to come over and take what they want without paying me. That fails to motivate me to produce much of anything, since I would have all I wanted of the fruit and could not sell it to buy the other things I need. Meanwhile, the government continues to tax me to its heart’s desire.

    Is it any surprise that we have raised a “government nanny” country? Why should people continue to strive to get an education, when George Soros and Moveon.org can buy an election and their adherents be supported at taxpayers’ expense? Nay, become rich by shorting the dollar when inflation takes over from the bank bailout caused by past government policy acting in concert with human nature.

  • http://na suddencall

    I see the republican terror group are still trying to blame the democrats for their lack of comprehension and crooked devises that failed the country and their party.We need to sieze the asetts of everyone who voted republican in 04 to help pay for the damage they caused.

    • Lisa

      Seize away…that’s what Obama and his administration are going to do to our paychecks, 401(k)s and anything that has a value to it. Please give it a break. I think anyone who voted for Obama should be put on a boat and sent to Africa… How does that sound to you? I think it is a fair option, say in Kenya where they have a wonderful life full of joy and happiness. Please, send us a postcard after you arrive to let us know how you like it there.

      • sheilah

        I couldn’t agree more, I’d even help ship them there.

    • sheilah

      You haven’t seen terrorism yet since 9/11, but it will return and it won’t be pretty. We will be a socialistic/communistic country and it’s all because of people like you that were mesmerized by Obama.

      • http://na suddencall

        What do you call wrecking the DOJ and the economy ? We have seen nothing but terror for the last forty years.Republican terror.

  • SSG Prasuhn

    Guess what people….Did you know that the current (Individual) Income Tax — the one you pay every year (or at least, Uncle Sam likes to think you do) is ILLEGAL??

    It was NEVER ‘properly’ ratified for it to be enacted as a ‘statutory law’. In other words, since 1913 ‘Our Government’ has been STEALING FROM US and getting away with it!! Ask your friendly (?) IRS agent to ‘show’ you IN WRITING where you ‘HAVE’ to pay Income Taxes (on your earnings). Out ‘taxing’ law (up until 1913) was on CAPITAL GAINS (money earned on savings and investments) and on PROFITS (of what manufacturers made) ON MERCHANDISE MADE AND SOLD (money OVER and ABOVE the cost of manufacturing the product).

    The real ‘kicker’ here?? Prior to 1913 and the Individual Income Tax, America was IN THE BLACK. Since then, we’ve gone steadily DOWNHILL until we’re at our current state of affairs financially as a country. Pretty much the SAME thing that happened during the “CRASH OF ’29″.

    Want to know who’s REALLY running this country? NO, it’s NOT our politicians, IT’S BIG BUSINESS, BANKERS and MONEY (Backers), THAT’S WHO!!!

    WAKE UP AMERICA…THE WORLD’S (YOUR WORLD) ON FIRE!

    It’s TIME to VOTE OUT those currently in office and get some NEW BLOOD in to do the job RIGHT. FORGET the DEMOCRATS, the REPUBLICANS or any of the OTHER PARTIES!! We should ALL be VOTING AMERICAN!!! Currently, Democrat or Republican, NEITHER have DONE US ANY GOOD since before the India Wars of the 1870′s.

    “Nuff Said’,

    • Mark

      VOTE OUT? No way in hell that swill is going to allow itself to be voted out. They’ve got ACORN and the Judiciary behind them, and the filthy maggot pigs will do whatever they’re damn well told. No, there ain’t gonna be no “VOTE OUT” with this putrid swill. We’re headed towards a revolution or civil war, baby!

      • SSG Prasuhn

        To ‘Vote Out’ can go one of two ways….Both methods begin with the letter ‘B’ and end with the letter ‘T’ and they both have the same number of letters in the ‘word’. Both methods are ‘very’ effective except that ‘one’ is ‘more effective’ than the other…there’s ‘NO’ chance for ‘re-election’ with the one method, if you get my drift (…off to sleep now….I’m soooo tired — GRIN!)

        ACORN — I guess now we know why they’re so ‘Squirrelly’; don’t we???

        ‘Nuff Said’,

  • http://LibertyPersonalDigest lauren

    I agree with the comment that someone said about Obama to ship him to Africa. I do not think there is a person out there that would disagree. And is someone says give him a chance. Bullshit! He’s had long enough. He certainly knows how to spend our hard earned tax money. I wish that congress would let Harry Reid that old bat leave his big tough job . He is not helping people neither is Nancy Princess Pelosi! What about the crooked Barney Frank. and supposid Chis Dodd? They are all a bunch of cheats in that White House!

  • RoseC

    Where are the constitutional attorneys since Obama became U.S. President and have they all gone underground? The fact is that 1) The stimulus bill proposed and pushed as urgent with fear mongering by Obama, Dodd, and Gaithner made the bonuses legal contractually; Obama didn’t come out as angry until the information was leaked to the public; 2) The government can’t just make laws on a whim to make themselves look better by proposing and implementing a retroactive law that would punish those who received the bonus legally and order excessive and unusual taxes upon those receipients of the bonuses when the government already places a high tax on bonuses that must be claimed as income; and 3) the federal government appears to be violating U.S. Constitutional law that states it has limited powers but is trampling on states rights, We The People rights; and constitutional rights by expanding its powers without limits and printing trillions of dollars without accountability and without limits or boundaries in total disregard for the majority of people who say – let free enterprise work. File bankruptcy. Go into receivership. Fail if you must. Let other stable banks or insurance companies or car dealerships take over those that don’t know how to do their job honestly and responsibly. That’s America. In the 80s, banks and markets failed and others took them over or the failed corporations closed down, but America kept moving forward and obviously, forgot that we don’t need socialism to ruin Americanism.

  • PaulW

    Every single member of Congress that voted to pass the AIG Bonus Tax Bill should resign. It is obvious that none of them that voted for the bill understands much less knows the Constitution. The Constitution which they swore an oath to ‘support and defend’.

    Even if none of them resign from Congress, Speaker Palosi needs to step down as Speaker since she even allowed the bill to come to the floor for a vote.

  • Roger A

    Card check, what a scam. Why do the unions need the goverment to pass laws to protect them? If they have such a great product to offer why laws? If it is for the better of the country lets put unoins on the 2010 ballet. If America wants union then they can have them, but if they don’t unions will be against the law. It will never happen. Why does the Vice President meet with them behind closed doors? And if the goverment is working with the unions lets see all of their financials and see how much they are paying for this help.Maybe they are paying themselves too much and we should control them.
    Today card check .Tomorrow Acorn will be looking over your shoulder to make sure you vote for the right Socialist. Look Out America It’s Comming.

  • Eric g

    Yes i Think congress should pass a retroactive tax law on all bonuses Bail out or not over $250,000 .
    Even companies not getting a bailout from taxpayers . If the bonuses was paid from stock holders ,losses Its should still be illeagal . Go back 5 to ten yrs a retroactive bonus tax , for all companies . Please dont give them penalties , but a 90% rate would be about right . Who in their right mind would give foreigners bonuses for losing american stockholders money . If republicans think this is the law ,Iam sure glad we changed administrations .

    • RogerA

      Eric g
      I sure hope you don’t win the lottery or inherit any money, because this goverment will tell you thats too much money for you to have and you didn’t earn it . So they are going to tax it 90%. They think you are too stupid to have that much money and they know better how to spend it than you do.Just keep your eyes closed and they will take everything you have. They love guys like you.

    • PaulW

      Eric g,
      You obviously don’t know your Constitution either. Maybe you are like most members of Congress, pick and choose what parts you choose to follow.

      • Eric g

        As i should have alredy told you , you are right ,thats exactly what they do pick and choose . We cant even get the law to show us Oboma’s birth certificate . Dont you know about the rights of privacy . Now I understand the goverment is going to obtain all medical records in a central medical records base . Yours will be public , Oboma’s will still be private . Health care and retirement acounts are different for the public employees and congress than for you and me . Is this constitutional ? Pual i know their was a constitution , I guess it is a living constitution , that can be interrupted anyway they want . If it was followed justly . it could still be changed , but only with a 2 thirds majority . We would not have many changes . I would love to have the government follow the constitution more closely .

  • FRED

    the pepole have only one choise and that is next election start KICKING THE CONGRESS THAT NOW RUNS THIS NATION OF FREE PEPOLE OUT OF OFFICE, IT WILL TAKE 3 ELECTIONS TO DOW IT !!!!!
    SO KEEP THIS WARNING IN MINED AS YOU LIVE AND BREATH FOR THE NEXT 6 OR 8 YEARS!
    OBAMA NEVER HAD A DIRECTION OR STAND TOO RUN ON IN THE FIRST PLACE.
    ONLY CHANGE

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