Opposition Grows to Bailouts

By Robert Romano

Although it sometimes may seem that the government is completely committed to throwing money at the problems it created, there may be a growing consensus in Washington against simply flushing money down the toilet.

To be certain, the Senate did vote late last week to release the second installment of $350 billion from the Troubled Asset Relief Program to the Treasury for disbursement. But, surprisingly, the resolution only passed by a slim 52-42 margin.

Although the bill now moves to the House, there were in fact 42 heroes who stood in opposition, and here they are, listed in full:

Barrasso (R-WY)
Bayh (D-IN)
Bennett (R-UT)
Bond (R-MO)
Brownback (R-KS)
Burr (R-NC)
Cantwell (D-WA)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coburn (R-OK)
Cochran (R-MS)
Collins (R-ME)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Crapo (R-ID)
DeMint (R-SC)
Dorgan (D-ND)
Ensign (R-NV)
Enzi (R-WY)
Feingold (D-WI)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Hutchison (R-TX)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johanns (R-NE)
Lincoln (D-AR)
Martinez (R-FL)
McCain (R-AZ)
McConnell (R-KY)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Nelson (D-NE)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Sanders (I-VT)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shaheen (D-NH)
Shelby (R-AL)
Specter (R-PA)
Thune (R-SD)
Vitter (R-LA)
Wicker (R-MS)
Wyden (D-OR)

Included were 9 Senators who caucus with the Democratic majority. What does that mean? It means that if Senate Republicans had stood together—and if they can now unite—the unbridled Washington spending spree could actually be brought under control.

It also means that those tired of the bailout—in the media and at the grassroots level—need now to apply pressure to the the following Republican Senators who defected from the vast majority of their caucus:

Alexander (R-TN)
Gregg (R-NH)
Kyl (R-AZ)
Lugar (R-IN)
Snowe (R-ME)

Ultimately, those Senators will be forced to bow to public pressure—or be forced to bout out altogether. They clearly have not yet learned the solution does not lie in throwing money at the problem without reforming the errant policies that caused the economic downturn in the first place: absurdly interest rates, too much credit, loose dollar policies, mandating financial institutions to lend to those who could not afford to pay back.

The last thing the American people want is to flush yet more money down the drain to repair something that the government could best fix simply by leaving alone. Fortunately, 42 members of the Senate seem to finally be getting the message.

Robert Romano is the Editor of ALG News Bureau.


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