In light of controversy surrounding White House involvement with failed energy company Solyndra and wireless start-up LightSquared, Representative Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) said on Tuesday that his committee plans to investigate government loan programs to private corporations.
“I want to see when the president and his cronies are picking winners and losers… it wasn’t because there were large contributions given to them,” the chairman of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee said Tuesday morning on C-SPAN.
Issa, the GOP’s self-proclaimed “chief watchdog” said that the committee plans to seek answers to questions like how a company that requires Federal subsidies can still afford to make large contributions to political campaigns. The government has provided hundreds of loans to companies in the tech, green energy and automotive industries.
Issa is also poised to investigate LightSquared, a wireless company, amid allegations that the White House pressured an Air Force general to revise testimony before a closed congressional hearing to aid the company after information surfaced demonstrating interference between the company’s products and military GPS. Emails between the company and the White House show a close relationship between LightSquared’s CEO Sanjiv Ahuja and top level Democrats. Administration officials met with executives from the company on the same day that the CEO wrote a $30,400 check to the Democratic National Committee.
Issa said that the reason crony capitalism is dangerous is that politicians pick businesses as “winners” for ideological reasons or simply because the companies supports them politically, and disregard any true market indicators that will be the true measures of success.