Kingston Calls For End To Wall Street Bailout
As the December 31, 2009 deadline for the end of the Trouble Asset Relief Program (TARP) nears, Congressman Jack Kingston (R-GA) is calling on the Secretary of the Treasury to adhere to the program's end date.
In a letter to Secretary Geithner, Congressman Kingston joined other House Republicans in urging the Treasury to, "put the TARP out of its misery," and to dedicate all returned funds and other revenue toward reducing the national debt.
"TARP was supposed to be a temporary program," Congressman Kingston said. "As long as the funding remains on the table, there will be calls to redirect it to other pet projects and programs. To restore confidence in the dollar and in our government, we must see that TARP ends and that every dollar left is devoted to paying down our debt."
While estimates vary on the final cost to the taxpayers from TARP, all estimates indicate that the taxpayers will lose billions of dollars and that there will ultimately be no profit from the program. Ensuring that every dime of income goes to debt reduction, Congressman Kingston argues, will reduce the ultimate loss to taxpayers.
When TARP was enacted, the public debt limit was increased to $11.3 trillion. Since January, the national debt has increased more than $1.4 trillion and Congress is now set to consider a debt limit increase of up to $13.2 trillion, the fourth such increase since July 2008.
In recent weeks, some leading Democrats have suggested that the $246 billion remaining in the TARP program should be diverted for a second economic stimulus. Congressman Kingston believes such a move would be irresponsible.
"If pouring money on the problem was the answer, we'd be on easy street right now," Congressman Kingston said. "It's not and it's time to face the facts. Running up our nation's debt will further weaken the economy and hamper future growth."