ICYMI: Highlights From RNC Conference Call on President Obama's Trip to Colorado and the Latest Solyndra Developments

Reince Priebus - August 7, 2012

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus:

"As you know, we've recently uncovered emails that I think raise more questions about the Obama administration's dis-reckless handling of the Solyndra loan deal. They expose an obvious lack of transparency in the self proclaimed most 'transparent administration in history' and they reveal an administration with absolutely no interest in protecting hard working American's tax dollars. So, I think it's time for the president to come clean and give answers to the American people and I think he can do that tomorrow in Colorado. 

"You may remember, in 2008, Obama stood at Mile High Stadium, promised hope, sold Coloradoans on changing Washington, but as president, he now returns to Colorado and these new revelations show that he's really just offered more of the same. And what he's really shown is that this president is the king of promises but can't follow through on one of them. 

"Here's what we've learned in recent days, contrary to Obama's denials including Rahm Emanuel and others like Jack Lew, nearly every member of Obama's inner circle may have known the Solyndra loan was headed for disaster. Jack Lew knew, Bill Daley knew, Rahm Emanuel knew, and not only did he know, but it was his idea to get the White House involved, referencing Rahm Emanuel. Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett, Stephanie Cutter, Larry Summers, Tim Geithner, the VP's office, government agencies, and private investors, they all knew, but the president did nothing. Everyone around the president was informed of the warning signs so the president must have known. He didn't lift a finger on behalf of the American people. That's how little regard he has for hard working Americans. 

"When it looked like Solyndra was heading south, the Obama administration faced the choice of cutting Solyndra loose and limiting the losses or restructuring the loan and doubling down on a failing company. That restructuring also meant that when Solyndra went bankrupt, Obama's green energy investor cronies got paid back while taxpayers got stuck with the bill. That's how much Obama's values help the middle class who are working so hard in this country. 

"So, here are the questions for the president: Why did he turn a blind eye to the warnings? Why didn't he pull the plug on Solyndra as was recommended? Why did he fleece the taxpayers for $535 million dollars? When will he take responsibility for this choice, come clean, and explain it to the American people instead of trying to point fingers? 

"My guess is it had something to do with the fact that Solyndra was backed by his major buddies and political fundraisers, but it also has to do with the president putting politics over policy throughout his presidency. This most recent batch of emails basically said as much. He used our money to send half a billion dollar thank you note to his campaign supporters and he hasn't explained why. 

"So, when President Obama heads to Colorado tomorrow for his first campaign event since these emails were revealed, I think it's time that he comes clean. If president Obama is unwilling to be honest with the American people then it's clear he's just another plasticized Washington politician using Chicago style politics to continue to keep power for personal gain."

U.S. Congressman Cory Gardner (CO-4):

"In 2008, I watched as President Obama delivered a speech to Colorado and the nation from Denver's Mile High Stadium. Since then declaring that his would be the 'most transparent administration in history.' In Denver, the next year in 2009 he signed a trillion dollar stimulus bill. While we've heard the president talk, his actions and results certainly don't match up.  

"As a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, we finally brought some sunshine to Solyndra. Last week after months of investigation, the Energy and Commerce Committee report just came out and it clearly shows that the president hasn't answered questions about why. Why his administration knew about the failures and failing of Solyndra and did nothing. Why the president and his administration allowed the loan to be subordinated. Why the president and his administration allowed the taxpayers to lose half a billion dollars when it is clear from analyst within his administration that he could have liquidated Solyndra and have saved hundreds of millions of dollars. All the president's men knew about this, yet he did nothing. 

"It's time someone asks the questions and demand accountability on Solyndra from the president. His administration's transparency and sunshine was quickly clouded by the Solyndra failure. A spectacular example of crony capitalism and government failure at the top levels of the White House and a complete subversion of the taxpayer interest over the interest of good policy and taxpayer protection. And one of the things we have noticed throughout this investigation is uncovering a White House through a series of emails that is capable in subordinating hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer money despite the concerns that the Treasury and OMB raised  that was possibly not legal. The top leadership in the White House knew of the warnings, knew of the red flags that were there. That trouble wasn't just looming for Solyndra but trouble was on hand for Solyndra. And ignoring the advice of their analysts, they pushed forward, the president and his administration pushed forward for press purposes. 

"Emails suggest that OMB felt pressured. Normally a review of this kind takes nearly a month, they did it in nine days because they had already set the press event for Secretary Chu and a video conference from Vice President Biden before the review by OMB was complete. Solyndra even referred to President Obama's Department of Energy as the 'Bank of Washington.'

"Solyndra really is the ultimate symbol of the president's economic failures. We see with it wasted spending and a complete failure to understand the economy. And as a member of Congress from Colorado our state and our country deserves better then what we have seen from this president. The country deserves better, the state deserves better and it's unfortunate that the people that suffer the most are America's middle class. People are unemployed. 1,800 people out of work because of this. Half of billion dollars of taxpayer money gone. And Mitt Romney understands what it takes to get this country moving again. He understands what it's going to take to address the four corners of our economy and get this country back to economic growth."

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