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No More Solyndras Act

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. MARKEY. I thank the gentleman from California, and I compliment the gentleman from California on his fight on this issue because we're right down to something, which is one of the greatest political frauds of all time being perpetrated here on the House floor. It is a monument to the political cynicism of the Republican Party that we have such a bill out here on the floor today. It is a tribute to the control that the fossil fuel and nuclear industry now has over the Republican Party. We have a bill out here on the House floor which purports to make sure that the program which gave loans to Solyndra is ended.

The name of the bill is No More Solyndras, meaning no more Federal loans to these speculative energy projects, which could ultimately wind up taking money out of the pockets of American taxpayers. That's what they say they are doing. No more Solyndras, meaning end that program. But what does their bill do?

Well, their bill says no more Solyndras, but it should be amended to say the only $88.4 billion more for nuclear and coal no more Solyndras act of 2012, because what the Republicans do is that they grandfather in all of these applications, $75.6 billion for nuclear, $11.9 billion for coal, 88.4 billion for nuclear and coal.

Now, it will be one thing if they were saying, ah, but we have made a determination that the solar industry, the wind industry--that's risky. But the nuclear industry, oh, that's just the safest industry ever--except for one thing. When this program was put on the books in 2005, it was Pete Domenici from New Mexico who put the program on the books in order to provide a crutch for the nuclear industry. Then when the Bush administration was even apprehensive about giving out any loans, the Republicans then began to pressure the Bush administration to give out loans to the nuclear industry, which it did not want to d0.

Senator Domenici actually put a hold on former Congressman Nussle even being named to the head of the OMB until he promised he was going to give out loans to the nuclear industry. That's the history of this program: nuclear, nuclear, nuclear.

The last year the Republicans were in control of the House and the Senate, what did they do? Well, in the loan guarantee program, they left in $32 billion for nuclear and coal and cut out the $17 billion in loan guarantees for wind and solar. Get the picture? Nuclear, coal--they like it. Wind and solar--they hate it.

To be more clear about it, the nuclear and the coal industry hate it because wind and solar are taking off across this country: 12,000 new megawatts of wind this year; 3,200 new megawatts of solar this year. It is taking off as these other two industries are going down. This level playing field was just too much, too much for the Republicans.

Adam Smith is spinning in his grave so quickly that he would qualify for a new energy tax break under the Republican program. That's how crazy all of this is.

Get to the bottom line. I made an amendment in the committee. I said, okay, Solyndra lost $535 million. You can see the crocodile tears how concerned they are about this loan guarantee program. So I said okay, no energy loan guarantee recipient who lost more than $540 million last year is eligible for a loan guarantee.

Now, what I was talking about, the United States Enrichment Corporation, a nuclear company that last year and this year has been put on the warning list to be delisted from the New York Stock Exchange, which S&P and Moody's have dropped down to junk bond status, and the Republicans are saying they are so concerned about the standards.


Mr. MARKEY. Here is a company basically teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, with the Federal Government already having given it, that company, an additional $1 billion from Federal taxpayers to keep it afloat. The Republicans all voted ``no.'' We're not going to set up any standards. We're not going to have any rules. When the Southern Company wanted $8 billion for two nuclear power plants, even though it's $1 billion over cost already, the Republicans say no problem, it's nuclear.

So this is a pretty clear line here. It's an all-out assault on solar and wind, all-out. It's been going on for a year and a half. This is the next installment; it's all about the future.

They're locked into the past, the Republican Party, that old way that has failed. As this new marketplace has opened up, they are doing everything they can to undermine that new future of solar and wind while tilting the playing field so that nuclear and coal continue to qualify for Federal taxpayer subsidies.

Vote ``no'' on this only $88.4 billion dollars more for nuclear and fossil no more Solyndras act.


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