John Ransom

I’ve heard enough now.

It’s time for Congress to appoint a special prosecutor in the Solyndra case.

Beside the foot dragging inside the White House and the OMB in document production, revelations made recently about political pressure from inside the administration on the Office of Management and Budget to approve the Solyndra deal, and the subsequent restructuring that put taxpayers at greater risk, say that there is no way the administration can be expected to investigate itself with any reasonable level of objectivity.

And an investigation is warranted.

In February, the administration renegotiated with Solyndra’s billionaire investor- remember the one who was also a big contributor to the Obama campaign?- as the company was failing. That deal allowed billionaire George Kaiser’s foundation to jump ahead of the American taxpayers for all but $150 million of the government’s $527 million loan in any company bankruptcy.

Oh, and it’s a transaction that also happens to be illegal. Although Democrats are floating the idea that the government has the authority to make the taxpayers take a back seat to Kaiser in a bankruptcy, sources close to the investigating committee say that a plain reading of the statute never allows taxpayers to go to the back of the line under any circumstances.

In other words, under the law, the government always has the obligation to protect taxpayer money in any case, including a bankruptcy. It’s a novel concept for this administration, but it happens to be the law.     

And bankruptcy for Solyndra was just a matter of time according to outside due diligence done by the DoE

According to Bloomberg, the credit agency hired to analyze Solyndra’s financial condition guessed as early as August, 2009 the exact date Solyndra would run out of money:

The financial model used by a credit-rating company to review the Solyndra guarantee showed “the project would run out of cash in September 2011,” according to the report.

“This is a liquidity issue,” according to an Aug. 20, 2009, e-mail between Energy Department officials who weren’t named in the report.

Yet the loan was still issued. And I find it hard to believe that the loan would have been approved by a Department of Energy staffer with a pension on the line, just trying to put in 20 years.  

Yet that’s what the White House would have you believe.


John Ransom

John Ransom is the Finance Editor for Townhall Finance.