Why Solyndra is a Big Deal
You wouldn’t know it from the mainstream press, which doesn’t provide much coverage. One reporter recently affirmed that this is definitely not Watergate. But the collapse of solar panel maker Solyndra has the potential to become a major scandal for the Obama White House.
Even as big as Watergate.
What we know is very suspicious, involving money, influence and possible misuse of hundreds of millions in taxpayer dollars. There’s much that we don’t know. And one thing we don’t know is if there’s been some of that activity that seems to always bring down politicians – a coverup.
To help you understand why this is such a threat to the White House, I’ve assembled for you the key facts. When put together – as I have not seen done elsewhere – they make a compelling case that something is very rotten in the state of Denmark.
1. Solyndra received $535 million in federal loan guarantees, taxpayer money that has been lost now that Solyndra has failed.
2. At the time the loan guarantee was given, questions were raised even by outside analysts, about the viability of the company. And yet Solyndra received a half a billion dollar loan arranged by the Energy Department and an interest rate on its loan even lower than that given other DOE green energy projects.
3. Solyndra is backed financially by one of President Obama’s most important campaign contributors, George Kaiser, who in addition to giving his own money to the president solicits, or “bundles,” funds from other large donors.
4. Another top Obama fundraiser, Stephen Spinner, was the Department of Energy official monitoring the handing out of money for “green” energy deals. While he claims he recused himself from the Solyndra decision, the reason isn’t very comforting – his wife’s law firm represented the company.
5. OMB officials charged with reviewing the DOE decision to grant the loan guarantee complained repeatedly they were being rushed to make a decision. The White House says it exerted no influence, but OMB officials wrote that they indeed felt pressured. The White House is either lying or unaware of someone powerful within it who put the screws on OMB officials.
6. Kaiser and Solyndra officials repeatedly visited the White House before the loan guarantee was approved.
7. In 2009, the same year the Solyndra loan guarantee went through, Kaiser donated $10,000 to the University of Chicago Medical Center’s Urban Health Initiative, which Michelle Obama helped found and which is run by Eric Whitaker, one of Obama’s best friends.
8. As Solyndra began to fail, the White House allowed a restructuring of the debt that ignored the rules and allowed private creditors to stand ahead of taxpayers for repayment of the first $75 million.
9. And, in the latest development, Solyndra executives plan to take the Fifth when they testify before Congress Friday.
It’s not yet Watergate. But money and influence all seem to be involved, and someone at the White House is already hiding their tracks.
If this were the Bush administration, teams of reporters would be swarming around the issue to dig up the facts. Imagine if Cheney were involved?
Watch Solyndra. You can bet the White House is.
Editor, White House Dossier