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Taxing Executive Bonuses Paid by Companies Receiving TARP Assistance

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

TAXING EXECUTIVE BONUSES PAID BY COMPANIES RECEIVING TARP ASSISTANCE

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Mr. HARE. I thank the chairman.

Mr. Speaker, today we have been told to slow down, take a deep breath. Well, I'm not in the mood for slowing down and I'm not taking a deep breath.

I was in a grocery store and had people coming up, saying, What are you going to do about it?

My friends on the other side have spent the largest portion of the debate today finger-pointing, wondering who said what; who wrote what, when. I do know this. When this vote is called, that board will have red lights and green lights next to every Members' name. And the chairman is absolutely right--for those Members who feel that they cannot and don't want to make sure that these people get their bonuses, they will vote for Mr. Rangel's bill. For those of you who want to continue to dole it out to the people who deserve it the least, then you're going to have a red light next to it.

I will have a green light next to my name. I am tired of this. These people have stolen the very money that is supposed to help keep people in their homes.

Don't ask me to slow down and don't ask me to be patient. My patience has run out.

I thank the chairman for his work on this bill. And if anybody wants to worry about the constitutionality, you take it up with the court.

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Mr. HARE. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in strong support of H.R. 1586 to pose an additional tax on bonuses received from TARP recipients. Like my constituents, I am frustrated and angry that the American International Group (AIG) paid $165 million in bonuses after we have given them billions of hard-earned taxpayer dollars. Clearly, the `G' in AIG stands for greed.

It is outrageous that taxpayers are subsidizing bonuses as much as $6.5 million at a time when working families are struggling to make ends meet. I am reminded of the saying: 'Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.' I wholeheartedly opposed the decision to pour an additional $30 billion into AIG earlier this month given the company's record. AIG is a company that spent $440,000 on a luxury retreat less than a week after receiving its first federal bailout. To make matters worse, the company then spent $86,000 on an English hunting trip. Enough is enough.

I support any and all legal efforts to recoup this money, and protect working families in this difficult economy.

I urge all my colleagues to vote yes on H.R. 1586 and tell the American people that this Congress is fed up with corporate abuses of the Troubled Asset Relief Program and we will do everything in our power to be better stewards of taxpayer money.

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