« Davis Bacon for Executives |
Blog Home Page
| The Housing Bubble: Expecting the Unexpected »
March 17, 2009
White House on AIG then and now
Jake Tapper of ABC news conveniently reminds us of Robert Gibbs' response to his questions on March 2, 2009 regarding the disposition of the government funds AIG received.
AIG had at this point designated $165 million in retention bonuses for officers of the Financial Products subsidiary, as well as an additional $121.5 million in executive bonuses.
TAPPER: AIG, is the administration confident that it, that it knows what happened to the tens of billions of dollars previously given to AIG?
GIBBS: Is it confident -- I'm sorry?
TAPPER: That they know -- that you guys know what happened to the previous billions before you hand over this next $30 billion.
GIBBS: Yes -- yes, the -- I mean, I don't think it's a -- well, obviously, you've got a huge insurance company that is losing money, not the least of which because of its sheer size and sheer size and decrease in the growth in our economy. It experiences a far bigger drop, largely because of its size. But, again, the steps that -- that Treasury and -- and others took were to ensure a larger systemic problem wasn't one that we had to deal with here today in letting something just die.
TAPPER: But in terms of specifically the -- I guess it's like $150 billion before, you guys are confident...
This is now:
President Barack Obama (D) speaking about AIG on March 16, 2009.
President Barack Obama blistered insurance giant AIG for "recklessness and greed" Monday and pledged to try to block it from handing its executives $165 million in bonuses after taking billions in federal bailout money. "How do they justify this outrage to the taxpayers who are keeping the company afloat?" Obama asked. "This isn't just a matter of dollars and cents. It's about our fundamental values."