April 20, 2014

Transcript: President George W. Bush Final Press Conference – January 12, 2009

(Source: White House Press Office)

9:17 A.M. EST

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you. Tapper. We have been through a lot together. As I look through the room, I see Jake, Mike, Herman, Ann Compton. Just seemed like yesterday that — that I was on the campaign trail and you were analyzing my speeches and my policies. And I see a lot of faces that travel with me around the world and — to places like Afghanistan and Iraq and Africa. I see some new faces, which goes to show there’s some turnover in this business.

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Mary Jo Kilroy’s Committee Assignment Puts Her in Center of Economic Recovery Efforts

kilroyFreshman U.S. Rep. Mary Jo Kilroy has gotten a seat on the high profile House Committee on Financial Services chaired by Massachussetts Rep. Barney Frank.

Frank’s committee has taken center stage in combating the U.S. financial crisis.  The much and rightfully maligned Troubled Assets Relief Program, aka, $700 billion bailout, originated in Financial Services.  Frank also pushed for a bailout of the U.S. auto industry, but Senate Republicans killed that effort until the Bush Administration stepped in with $17 billion for GM and Chrysler late last month.

Kilroy and her fellow Congressional Democrats will be in a unique position very soon after President-elect Barack Obama takes office in a couple of weeks.  The original bailout bill called for $350 billion of the $700 billion total to be disbursed by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, led by Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson.  Paulson has been roundly criticized for the money not serving the purpose for which Congress intended – unlocking frozen capital markets.  The Government Accountability Office and an oversight arm of the committee which Kilroy now serves found several problems with how the money has been disbursed, chief among them accountability.  Bailout dollars have been used to pay out executive bonuses, sit as cash holdings and used by some banks to acquire others.

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U.S. Sunday Papers | December 21

Los Angeles Times

New York Times

Washington Post

Bailout Bill Done Deal – News Roundup

Bush Signs Rescue Bill After House PassesNew York Times

How Your Member Voted - New York Times

House Approves $700 Billion BailoutWashington Post

How Bailout Politics ChangedWashington Post

Bailout PorkMSNBC

Bailout Bill’s Value to Economy in Long Term Worth the Expense?

Apparently, the first Wall Street Bailout wasn’t big enough for the House Republicans and Democrats who voted against it on Monday. Congressional leaders from both parties are now saying heading into Friday’s planned vote that they’ll have the support they need to saddle the federal government with $700 billion in junk investments and billions more in tax breaks. What doesn’t appear to be in the bill, as passed by the Senate, is even the beginning of rulemaking or regulation to see that the investment class in New York and Washington doesn’t do this to the rest of us ever again.

It still seems ironic that all of the “free market” politicians in Congress are lining up behind what appears to be a huge social program for yachtsmen and polo players. The question tonight is will the action in Congress do anything at all constructive for an American economy that seems to be leading the world only due to the sheer size of an inefficient health care system and more imagination than value in our investment markets.