By ERIC LIPTON and JOHN M. BRODER
Published: September 22, 2011
Here are some pull quotes:
"While no evidence has emerged that political favoritism played a role in what administration officials assert were merit-based decisions..."
On the face of it, it actually sounds reasonable, until you realize what you just read in the prevous paragraph:
"The government’s backing of Solyndra, which could cost taxpayers more than a half-billion dollars, came as the politically well-connected business began an extensive lobbying campaign that appears to have blinded government officials to the company’s financial condition and the risks of the investment, according to a review of government documents and interviews with administration officials and industry analysts."Hmmm... Admittedly, there are two authors of the article......
"While no evidence has emerged that political favoritism played a role in what administration officials assert were merit-based decisions, Solyndra drew plenty of high-level attention. Its lobbyists corresponded frequently and met at least three times with an aide to a top White House official, Valerie B. Jarrett, to push for loans, tax breaks and other government assistance. "
Wait a minute.... I'm getting mixed signals here. Is this a political scandal or not...
“It was alarming,” said Frank Rusco, a program director at the Government Accountability Office, which found that Energy Department preliminary loan approvals — including the one for Solyndra — were granted at times before officials had completed mandatory evaluations of the financial and engineering viability of the projects. “They can’t really evaluate the risks without following the rules.”
The Energy Department’s senior staff has acknowledged in interviews the intense pressure from top Obama administration officials to rush stimulus spending out the door.
Yes! I knew it!
Damien LaVera, an Energy Department spokesman, said administration officials realized the Solyndra plan posed some certain risks. The loan program was designed to help finance cutting-edge projects that could not otherwise find enough private-sector investors.
“But we did not just take what this company was telling us,” Mr. LaVera said. “We did the analysis on our own and decided it was a good bet.”
Yeah, it was probably just an honest mistake by an over zealous bureaucrat who only wanted to give a hand up to someone in the private sector. I'm sure it had nothing what so ever to do with the "nearly $1.8 million on Washington lobbyists" or the fact that "George B. Kaiser, a billionaire from Tulsa, Okla., was a fund-raiser for Mr. Obama’s 2008 campaign and the backer of a foundation that is Solyndra’s leading investor..."
No, I specifically remember Barack Hussien Obama promising to keep lobbyists out of the White House. Yeah, that's it. It was an honest mistake. A half a billion taxpayer dollar mistake. Easy come, tax some more....