Uncategorized — September 19, 2011 at 4:07 pm

Obama administration wants Wall Street banks to help pay for auto company and other bailout losses


This should make progressives VERY happy. In fact, it ought to make the Congressional Progressive Caucus especially happy because the Obama administration is pushing to adopt a key component of their People’s Budget (pdf): forcing the banks that caused our country’s economic crisis to help pick up the pieces by paying for the losses incurred by taxpayers in helping save our domestic auto industry and other emergency measures. The mechanism is a “Financial Crisis Responsibility Fee“.

The Obama administration said Monday it wants to make the nation’s largest banks pay for the losses incurred in the $85 billion auto bailout and other bailout programs.

As part of the administration’s proposal to cut the deficit by more than $3 trillion over 10 years, the White House has resurrected a proposal to create a “Financial Crisis Responsibility Fee” — a move that would raise $30 billion over 10 years.

The fee is aimed at recouping losses from the government’s $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program — the emergency fund created in 2008 by Congress to rescue banks, insurance companies and automakers.

In January 2010, President Barack Obama first proposed imposing a fee on big banks to cover auto losses. At the time, the fee was expected to raise $90 billion over 10 years, from the 50 largest institutions, including Ally Financial Inc., the government-owned Detroit-based auto and mortgage lender.

And, yes, Tim Geithner is on board.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner defended the proposal at a briefing with reporters Monday.

“That proposal is designed to make sure that if there are any losses from the emergency actions we took to put out the financial fires of ’08 and ’09, that we recover those losses in the form of a fee on the institutions that benefited most directly from those programs,” Geithner said.

I’d say that’s a fine idea. Fine indeed.