Friday, January 23, 2009

Did Cantor's wife benefit from bailout?

Breaking, from Pro Publica, on Virginia Rep and Minority Wip Eric Cantor:

The Treasury Department used $267 million of taxpayer funds to buy preferred stock in a private banking company that employs Cantor's wife.

Rob Collins, deputy chief of staff to Cantor:

[Collins said] the congressman didn't know the bank was seeking bailout money and never interceded on the bank's behalf with government regulators. He also said Cantor had never intended the bailout bill to be used to buy up stock in banks.

"No one knew outside the Treasury Department, including Congressman Cantor, how the bailout money would be used."

A spokesman for the bank:

Diana Cantor "has nothing to do with the operation of the main bank" and was "never aware that the parent bank was seeking or received [bailout] funding."

Keith Ashdown of Taxpayers for Common Sense:

"It looks very bad to the public when a very influential lawmaker's wife could be benefiting."

Cantor's deputy, again:

"Since no experts, soothsayers or former U.S. Treasury secretaries at any point or time have predicted the changes in how the bailout money would be used, there is neither logic nor reason to connect these apples and oranges."

How about them apples and radiators? Because that's what they are -- these two connections aren't even in the fruit category.

Democrats are going to have to decide how aggressively they want to pursue this, especially considering Geithner's woes and Obama's post-partisan era.

Read the whole piece. It has the length and detail of an investigative take-down with none of the logic.

UPDATE!: Michael Moore runs the Pro Publica piece verbatim, apparently trying to turn it into a story. So far, the non-Michael Moore media seems to be taking a pass.