Dems’ Solar Fire Sale: All Taxpayer Money Must Go!

The National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) is a political committee devoted to maintaining and increasing the 239-member Republican majority in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Today is the last day of stimulus funding for the loan guarantee program that infamously backed now-bankrupt Solyndra with a $535 million loan—and Obama’s Department of Energy is doing its best to make sure there’s no money left in the bank when the fund expires at midnight.

AS OBAMA’S DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY REACHES STIMULUS LOAN DEADLINE, $1.1 BILLION FLIES OUT THE DOOR: “The Energy Department finalized two loan guarantees for solar-power plants in Nevada and Arizona two days before a looming deadline.” (Ryan Tracy, “Two Solar Panels Get Loan Guarantees,” The Wall Street Journal, 9/28/2011)

FUNDING WILL DRY UP AFTER FRIDAY: “The department still has several applications for loan guarantees pending, all of which will have to be finalized by Friday in order to be eligible for the economic-stimulus program. After Friday, the department can still make loan guarantees but will have less funding to do so.” (Ryan Tracy, “Two Solar Panels Get Loan Guarantees,” The Wall Street Journal, 9/28/2011)

WSJ: ECHOES OF SOLYNDRA: “If you thought the $535 million Solyndra scandal had chastened the fearless venture capitalists of the Obama Administration, think again. The Department of Energy shovelled out $1.1 billion in new loan guarantees to solar projects in Nevada and Arizona Wednesday, and more deals are pending before the $18 billion program funded by the 2009 stimulus expires Friday. (Editorial, “What Solyndra Fiasco?”, The Wall Street Journal, 9/29/2011)

Democrats appear to have learned nothing from the Solyndra fiasco, which was similarly characterized by a rush to issue loans before they were properly vetted to make sure taxpayers were protected:

WSJ: “THE RUSH RAISES QUESTIONS ABOUT HOW CAREFULLY THESE OUTLAYS ARE BEING VETTED”: “We'll go out on a limb and say the rush raises questions about how carefully these outlays are being vetted, especially in light of solar-panel-maker Solyndra's August bankruptcy. The FBI, Treasury Department and Congress are all investigating who approved the politically connected California company's loan guarantee and why. The case is an embarrassment for the White House, which touted Solyndra as a model for its green jobs agenda.” (Editorial, “What Solyndra Fiasco?”, The Wall Street Journal, 9/29/2011)

SOLYNDRA REVIEW TOOK ONLY 9 DAYS; AVERAGE WAS 28 DAYS: (Ryan Tracy, “House Probes Solyndra Loan,” The Wall Street Journal, 9/14/2011)

A RECAP OF THE WHITE HOUSE RUSH TO JUDGMENT:

E-MAILS SHOW WHITE HOUSE TRIED “TO RUSH FEDERAL OFFICIALS” TO ISSUE SOLYNDRA LOAN: (Tim Mak, “Report: White House Pushed on Solyndra,” Politico, 9/14/2011)

OMB TO WHITE HOUSE, MARCH 2009: “THIS DEAL IS NOT READY FOR PRIME TIME”: (Phillip Klein, “OMB Had Warned Solyndra ‘NOT Ready for Prime Time,’” The Washington Examiner, 9/14/2011)

OMB STAFFER CALLED OUT WHITE HOUSE: “WE WOULD PREFER TO HAVE SUFFICIENT TIME TO DO DUE DILIGENCE REVIEWS AND HAVE THE APPROVAL SET THE DATE FOR THE ANNOUNCEMENT RATHER THAN THE OTHER WAY AROUND”: (Ryan Tracy, “House Probes Solyndra Loan,” The Wall Street Journal, 9/14/2011)

OMB STAFF WORRIED THAT “GIVEN TIME PRESSURE WE ARE UNDER TO SIGN-OFF ON SOLYNDRA,” NO TIME FOR THOROUGH RISK ASSESSMENT: (Tim Mak, “Report: White House Pushed on Solyndra,” Politico, 9/14/2011)

OMB TOLD WHITE HOUSE: WE “WOULD PREFER THAT THIS ANNOUNCEMENT BY POSTPONED”: (Tim Mak, “Report: White House Pushed on Solyndra,” Politico, 9/14/2011)

Instead, a troublesome pattern is emerging of Obama energy loans going to long-time Democrat donors, a number of whom have deep ties to the Obama administration and Democrat Leader Nancy Pelosi:

GREEN IS THE COLOR OF CAMPAIGN CASH: “OBAMA FUNDRAISERS TIED TO GREEN FIRMS THAT GOT FEDERAL CASH”: “Several of Barack Obama's top campaign supporters went from soliciting political contributions to working from within the Energy Department as it showered billions in taxpayer-backed stimulus money on alternative energy firms, ABC News and iWatch News have learned.

“One of them was Steven J. Spinner, a high-tech consultant and energy investor who raised at least $500,000 for the candidate. He became one of Energy Secretary Steven Chu's key loan program advisors while his wife's law firm represented a number of companies that had applied for loans.” (Matthew Mosk and Ronnie Greene, “Obama Fundraisers Tied to Green Firms that Got Federal Cash,” ABC News and iWatch News, 9/29/2011)

THE PELOSI CONNECTION:

NANCY PELOSI’S BROTHER-IN-LAW IS A MAJOR INVESTOR IN SOLARRESERVE, COMPANY THAT JUST RECEIVED $737 MILLION D.O.E. LOAN: “On SolarReserve's website is a list of ‘investment partners,’ including the ‘PCG Clean Energy & Technology Fund (East) LLC.’ As blogger American Glob quickly discovered, PCG's number two is none other than ‘Ronald Pelosi, a San Francisco political insider and financial industry polymath who happens to be the brother-in-law of Nancy Pelosi, the Minority Leader of the United States House of Representatives.” (Mark Hemingway, “Crony Capitalism: $737 Million Green Jobs Loan Given to Nancy Pelosi’s Brother-in-Law,” The Weekly Standard, 9/29/2011)

RONALD PELOSI AND NANCY PELOSI ARE PART OF “TIGHTKNIT POWER WEB” THAT IS SAN FRANCISCO’S “UPPER CRUST”: “A permanent overclass supports a well-attended opera, countless museums and other cultural amenities and also provides, for better or worse, civic and political continuity.

“The recent death of cultural doyenne Belinda Barbara Newsom provided a peek into that tightly knit world. She was the aunt of San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom, but also the former wife of Ronald Pelosi, a former city supervisor and brother-in-law of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.” (Dan Walters, “S.F.’s Upper Crust Is a Tightknit Power Web,” Fresno Bee, 11/28/2008)

THE ARGONAUT-KAISER CONNECTION:

OTHER INVESTORS INCLUDE ARGONAUT PRIVATE EQUITY, WHICH ALSO INVESTED IN… YOU GUESSED IT: SOLYNDRA: “Steve Mitchell and Argonaut Private Equity might have a chance to recoup some of their losses in the Solyndra debacle now that the Department of Energy has given as $737 million loan guarantee to a company backed by Argonaut that also lists Mitchell as a ‘board participant.’” (Joel Gehrke, “Solyndra Director Tied to $737 million Loan Guarantee,” The Washington Examiner, 9/28/2011)

ARGONAUT IS ALSO TIED TO OBAMA DONOR GEORGE KAISER: “According to Solar Reserve's website, one of its investors is Argonaut Private Equity, which also backed the Solyndra deal. Argonaut is an investment arm of the family foundation of George Kaiser, a political supporter of President Barack Obama. In the past, administration officials have denied that Mr. Kaiser's connection to the White House played any role in the Solyndra deal.” (Ryan Tracy, “Two Solar Plants Get Loan Guarantees,” The Wall Street Journal, 9/29/2011)

THE PODESTA CONNECTION:

TONY PODESTA IS A LOBBYIST FOR SOLARRESERVE: (Lobbying Report, Registrant Name: Podesta Group, Inc., Client Name: SolarReserve, Q2 2011, filed 7/20/2011)

PELOSI IS A CLOSE FRIEND OF THE PODESTAS, ATTENDED TONY’S 65TH BIRTHDAY BASH: “Spotted Friday night at lobbyist Tony Podesta’s 65th birthday party inside the National Museum of Women in the Arts museum … Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) with husband Paul Pelosi …” (Kiki Ryan, “Tony Podesta Celebrates 65th Birthday,” Politico, 10/24/2009)

TONY PODESTA IS JOHN PODESTA’S BROTHER: “In addition, in 1988, [John] Podesta founded with his brother Tony, Podesta Associates, Inc., a Washington, D.C. government relations and public affairs firm.” (“Arena Profile: John Podesta,” Politico.com, accessed 9/29/2011)

JOHN PODESTA IS THE CEO OF THE CENTER FOR AMERICAN PROGRESS: (“John Podesta,” Center for American Progress Web site, americanprogress.org, accessed 9/29/2011)

JOHN PODESTA LED OBAMA’S TRANSITION TEAM: “Obama asked Podesta last summer to lead the transition after Sen. Hillary Clinton withdrew from the race, but long before Obama was elected president.” (Lois Romano, “John Podesta Leads Obama’s Transition Team with His Usual Energy,” The Washington Post, 11/25/2008)

PODESTA “A KEY POLITICAL ALLY” FOR OBAMA: “President Barack Obama is nominating John Podesta, a key political ally, to serve on the board that helps set policies and direction for the government's national service agency, the White House announced Thursday.” (Ann Sanner, “Podesta Among Obama's Picks for Service Board,” Associated Press, 6/24/2010)

STARTING TO SEE A TREND…

“MORE SOLAR COMPANIES LED BY DEMOCRATIC DONORS RECEIVED FEDERAL LOAN GUARANTEES”: “A Daily Caller investigation has found that in addition to the failed company Solyndra, at least four other solar panel manufacturing companies receiving in excess of $500 million in loan guarantees from the Obama administration employ executives or board members who have donated large sums of money to Democratic campaigns.

“And as questions swirl around possible connections between political donations and these preferential financing arrangements, the Obama White House suddenly began deflecting The Daily Caller’s questions on Wednesday to the Democratic National Committee.” (John Rossomondo, “More Solar Companies Led by Democratic Donors Received Federal Loan Guarantees,” The Daily Caller, 9/29/2011)

OBAMA ABOUT TO HOLD A FUNDRAISER WITH MISSOURI POLITICO TOM CARNAHAN, BROTHER OF REP. RUSS CARNAHAN (D-MO), ALSO A WIND FARM OBAMA TAX CREDIT BENEFICIARY: “Carnahan, a member of the prominent Missouri Democratic family, has been tapped by the Obama campaign as its chief Missouri fundraiser. He is chairman of the board of Wind Capital Group, a wind energy company that makes it[s] corporate headquarters in St. Louis. He formerly was president and CEO of the company.

“Last year, Wind Capital’s Lost Creek Farm facility in northwest Missouri received a $107 million tax credit from the Treasury Department, among many such wind operations receiving support from stimulus funds.” (Bill Lambrecht, “Obama to Raise Money at Tom Carnahan’s St. Louis Home,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 9/23/2011)

$400 MILLION LOAN GIVEN TO ABOUND SOLAR, WHICH IS BACKED BY MAJOR FINANCIER OF DEMOCRAT CAUSES: “President Barack Obama on Saturday announced that Colorado thin-film solar panel manufacturer Abound Solar Inc. will get a conditional $400 million loan guarantee under the federal stimulus program to support expanded manufacturing.” (Mark Harden, “Obama Announces Abound Solar to Get $400M Federal Loan Guarantee,” Denver Business Journal, 7/03/2010)

BOHEMIAN COMPANIES IS AN INVESTOR IN ABOUND SOLAR: “Abound Solar’s existing investors, Invus Group, Bohemian Companies, DCM, and Technology Partners, participated in the equity round. New investors BP Alternative Energy Ventures and West Hill Companies joined in, according to an Abound Solar news release.” (Staff, “Solar Company Received Loan from Government,” The Tribune, 12/14/2010)

BOHEMIAN COMPANIES IS OWNED BY PAT STRYKER: “Bohemian Companies is owned by billionaire philanthropist Pat Stryker.” (Pat Ferrier, “Old Steele’s Coming Down,” Fort Collins Coloradan, 1/26/2010)

STRYKER HAS GIVEN $5,912,175 TO DEMOCRATS AND DEMOCRAT CAUSES SINCE 2001: (CQMoneyLine, accessed 9/29/2011)

 

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