James Pethokoukis

Politics and policy from inside Washington

Obama the (bank) Punisher

January 13, 2010

So says Larry Kudlow:

Think of this: The U.S. government bailed the banks out with TARP. Then the banks repaid TARP last year, including the stock warrants that provided a handsome taxpayer profit from the banks. And now the government wants to tax them? In other words, help the banks get healthy, and then punish them? I don’t understand it.

And here’s yet another ridiculous part of this story: The largest banks that de-TARPed, and are regaining their health, are now, with this tax, supposed to cover the government-owned failures like GM, GMAC, AIG, and Fannie and Freddie, which are running up huge deficits because they may be on the taxpayer dole in perpetuity. In other words, the healthy banks that made good decisions and paid down TARP are now getting taxed so that the government can finance the bad actors. This makes no sense at all.

Look, the big guys have de-TARPed. Now it’s time to get off their backs. As I wrote yesterday, bankers should not get bonuses for the period in which they were TARPed. But for the new year, since the bankers met their TARP obligations, Team Obama should leave them alone. Let the bankers help the economy grow, create wealth, and create jobs.

Comments

Words of wisdom from the master, AGAIN! You are the best, Mr. Kudlow.

Posted by gotthardbahn | Report as abusive
 

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