Written by Janet Beihoffer, 2nd Congressional District (MN) Republican Party Chair.
My Congressman, John Kline, voted to support the solution to address our financial problems. I have read a ton on both sides and will be writing a blog post "An Everyman's Explanation of the MESS" (www.scsuscholars.com and www.looktruenorth.com) in an attempt to put in English what is really going on with this fiasco. There are three components: the mortgage industry; banks; and other. It's the "other" category that is driving the need for a solution. While the mortgage and banking topics have been in the press, what has not been explained in all the headlines, rhetoric, hype, etc. is this: there are 100's if not 1000s of companies who got into the financing business starting in the 1980's. These companies include manufacturers, insurance, brokerage, etc. - all outside of the banking industry. They are all loaning each other money for a plethora of reasons. All wanted to make their profit on loaning money. The "bailout" was not so much for the barons/bankers of Wall Street as it was for those other companies who provide jobs, pension plans, etc.
Whether or not you agree with this, it simply is.
Now for John Kline: he understood this. He also knows that the Democrats control Congress. He knows that Democrat Pelosi and company had no intention of including House Republicans in any solution - that is until Treasury Secretary Paulson called McCain back to help. McCain got the House involved; the original plan (Paulson, Dems, Paulson) included money that was going to be funneled to ACORN and other Democrat (non-profit???) support groups which in turn would be funneled back to Democrats. Once McCain and the Republican House got involved, all the perks/earmarks/subsidies were removed; golden parachutes were removed; some real oversite procedures were put in place. So Kline voted for the offered solution.
If you go here, http://kline.house.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=NewsCenter.PressReleases&&ContentRecord_id=af90343d-19b9-b4b1-12b6-4f9196c167a3&CFID=4131912&CFTOKEN=43556962 you can read all of Kline's short post but this info is key:
“Today, members of Congress were asked to make a difficult decision. As it became increasingly clear that the financial crisis facing America was extending beyond Wall Street and threatening the jobs, homes, and retirement security of the men and women reporting for work on Main Streets throughout Minnesota and across America, we were asked to cast our vote for an imperfect, but important, solution. Unfortunately, this bill did not pass, and the crisis continues.
The result was imperfect, but it was a bipartisan solution that I believed was in the best interest of Americans.....it provided increased protection for the American taxpayer by instituting greater oversight and transparency. My Republican colleagues and I stood firm against the original, seriously flawed plan, as well as irresponsible provisions supported by my Democratic colleagues – including slush funds for left-leaning political organizations. We demanded that Wall Street finance its recovery through a federal insurance program. We also fought to ensure no golden parachutes would be available to corporate executives who made reckless decisions. But the bill failed, and we must, once again, return to negotiations." John Kline
Perfect, no; plausible,yes. Now the issue is whether or not there can be another plan that can keep the good stuff from this one as well as address outstanding issues that other Republicans want addressed. Unfortunately, our party is in the minority. The Democrats can pass any bill they want. You can bet the last dollar you have that they will include their friends in other bills. While Obama is fiddling, our economy is burning (up) and we need something. What? Phew, don't know but a stop gap measure needs to be put in place so we can regroup; then, have the government get out of the way. At least McCain is trying to do something - I know, we have our differences but...
Remember, most of the millionaires and billionaires are Democrats (Gates, Buffett, Oprah Winfrey, H'wood moguls, media barons, the Google and Yahoo mega millionaires as well as most of the dot.com mega millionaires, etc.). They won't miss the money but the rest of us will. Republicans are the party of the people. Too bad we do a lousy job of marketing that fact.
We are Americans; we solve problems when we have most of the facts.