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Wednesday, December 3, 2008

We need some answers

House Republicans are Finally asking some questions,from Reuters:

Leading Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday urged the Treasury Department to improve its handling of the $700 billion financial industry bailout program before asking Congress for authority to spend the second half of the money......"It is our strongly held view that before any such request is made, the American people need satisfactory answers to a number of important questions," said House Minority Leader John Boehner and other leading Republicans, in a letter obtained by Reuters....The letter, sent to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, came as Congress is beginning to focus on how and when the remaining $350 billion of the $700 billion in funds will be spent...The Fed was involved in the formulation of the $700 billion program and has been using some of its own tools to help ailing companies....It is still unclear whether a request for the release of those funds would come while President George W. Bush is in office or whether it will be left to Barack Obama's administration, which begins on January 20....Boehner and fellow Republicans complained to Paulson and Bernanke about the lack of transparency in the use of U.S. taxpayer funds to rescue banks and other financial institutions over the past few months.....The letter set forth seven questions lawmakers want answered, including Paulson's and Bernanke's "exit strategy for the government's sweeping involvement in private business" and how the two would maximize the effectiveness of the $350 billion as yet unspent....Republicans were deeply divided over establishing the $700 billion financial industry fund as the U.S. economy worsened over the past few months....The poor economy, which has been deemed in recession since December 2007, played a large role in Republicans' loss of the White House and many congressional seats in the November 4 election....In the letter, the House Republicans complained about the lack of openness to their inquiries about U.S. investments related to the $700 billion

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