Of the various scandals shaking the White House right now, the Solyndra pay-to-play scheme is perhaps the easiest to follow — but nothing that I’ve seen or read spells it all out so clearly as this video, released today by the Institute for Energy Research.
All we really need to know is in this video:
- The administration fast-tracked a $535 million loan to Solyndra.
- Major Solyndra investors were often also major Obama donors.
- Solyndra declared bankruptcy, despite apparently making it appear to the administration as recently as July that the company’s finances were fine.
Nor was it just the Obama campaign that received political donations from Solyndra and then shilled for green energy subsidies. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), for example, benefited from hefty contributions from a board member of the solar company — and is one of the most active backers of the green energy loan guarantee, subsidy and tax credit programs in the Senate, introducing six bills in the past three years to induce federal favors to green energy companies. Even after the White House and the Office of Management and Budget raised concerns about a potential Solyndra default, Brown accepted a maximum donation from Solyndra board member Thomas Baruch. Did Brown know Solyndra was headed for bankruptcy but choose to look the other way?
It’s easy enough to connect the dots — but, as suspicion and inferences aren’t enough to establish wrongdoing on the part of Brown or the administration, the House continues to investigate this — and rightly.
But, as House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan put it in an op-ed yesterday, “Regardless of the potential legal impropriety, there is no question that the fundamental laws of economics have been violated. The company’s rise and fall illustrates the folly of empowering government to pick winners and losers in our economy.”
Update: This post originally incorrectly stated that Sen. Sherrod Brown accepted donations from Solyndra employees, when, in fact, the donations came from a board member. The post has been corrected above.