Fiscal Suicide: Wow, that’s a lot of Debt!

There were two things that got me blogging again a) TARP, b) the utter incompetence of the McCain campaign, especially when it came to dealing with TARP. It seemed like a no brainer. McCain comes back to Washington to say that TARP stinks on ice, something that “Senator” McCain would have done. He rallies the Republicans behind him, the party has new energy, and while the Presidential campaign was already lost, we probably would have held on to any House seat we lost by less than 3%.

Instead, he went back to Washington to say nothing, encouraged R’s who would have rightly voted against the bill to vote for it, then got out of dodge without saying a word, even though the final bill was all porked up and Candidate McCain had been promising to call out the porkers and make them famous. Thanks for nothing, Champ.

Republicans are trying to make up for past mistakes and, with the help of one lowly Democrat, are calling on the Treasury to help pay down the massive debt Dear Leader has run up and NOT raise the debt ceiling by returning the unused TARP funds…

“As you know, the latest TARP report shows a significant amount of unobligated funds,” wrote all but one of the Senate’s 40 Republicans, joined by Alaska Democratic Sen. Mark Begich. “Ending the authority for TARP would help improve the Federal debt going forward and reduce the need to increase the debt limit, which Congress has raised three times in the last 14 months.”

Geithner has said that the federal government could hit the $12.1 trillion cap on how much it is allowed to borrow as early as mid-October, and he urged Senate leaders to act as soon as possible on the issue. Majority Leader Harry Reid is still working with Republican leaders to schedule a vote. The House has already passed a debt-limit increase. Ending TARP would put the remaining funds and future repayments toward reducing the national debt and thus lessen the government’s borrowing needs, the Senate Republicans said.

In the TARP letter, organized by Senate Republican Policy Chairman John Thune of South Dakota, Republicans pointed toward Geithner’s own recent testimony that financial markets are recovering in arguing that such an extension is not necessary. “While we understand that our economy is still recovering, we believe it can function without added TARP funding,” they wrote. Plus, this way Treasury can’t bail out anyone else: “The cost to the taxpayer if TARP authority was extended could be substantial. Already the taxpayer is expected to lose tens of billions on funding that was provided to GM, Chrysler and AIG,” the letter continues.

If only we had thought aboot this back in September.

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