John McCain has a plan for the bailout, where is Barack Obama’s? This is leadership. This is the real change you can believe in. Congress please think this out carefully, but quickly and prevent our country from going into a depression, your inaction will destroy our economy fully.
Let’s not bloat this with extras, lets get the bailout in the works and plan other legislation independently and carefully.
FREELAND, Mich. — Republican presidential nominee John McCain said today that “inaction is simply not an option” as Congress considers a bailout plan for Wall Street, but more accountability and transparency is needed than is currently in the plan being negotiated.
McCain laid out five principles he said should be included in the $700-billion proposal, but refused to say whether failure to to enact any of them would cause him to oppose the legislation.
“We must pass legislation to address this crisis,” McCain said after touring a Dow-Corning plant here. “If we do not, credit will dry up, with devastating consequences for our economy. People will no longer be able to buy homes and their life savings will be at stake. Businesses will not have enough money to pay their employees.”
As he has said before, McCain said five principles must be included: greater accountability and independent oversight; a path for taxpayers to recoup the money; transparency in decisions on which companies to help; a cap on the executive pay of those companies that take part and no earmarks in the plan for any specific businesses.
McCain made the statement and then took questions from four members of the traveling press corps, the first time he has made himself thus available in more than a month.
Told that some Democrats were waiting to see how McCain would vote before committing themselves to such a costly bailout — McCain acknowledged it was $10,000 per American household — McCain said that should not be relevant. “Let me say that I hope Democrats would recognize that this issue should not in any way be related to my vote,” McCain said. “Their vote should be determined on how to resolve this crisis.”
McCain said that a second economic stimulus package should not be attached to the legislation.
A copy of his prepared remarks follows:
America today faces an historic national crisis. The global economy is directly threatened by the potential collapse of our financial system. Two years ago, I warned the American people about the lack of oversight, transparency, backroom dealings and financial recklessness at Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. Those warnings went unheeded, and more than anything directly contributed to the subprime mortgage crisis which has created the perfect economic storm. Further inaction is simply not an option. We must pass legislation to address this crisis. If we do not, credit will dry up, with devastating consequences for our economy. People will no longer be able to buy homes and their life savings will be at stake. Businesses will not have enough money to pay their employees. But let us be perfectly clear: a great burden is upon the American people. Seven hundred billion dollars is a staggering and unprecedented figure, and it is important that I speak plainly to the American people about the dimensions of this proposal. In essence, what this plan requires is a ten thousand dollar contribution per household. Seven hundred billion dollars, for example, could rebuild the crumbling infrastructure in every town, county, and state in this country. Because what is being asked of the American people is unprecedented, great care must be taken to ensure their protection. With the taxpayer in mind, I am seeking 5 basic improvements to this legislation: First, there must be greater accountability included in the bill. I have suggested a bipartisan board to provide oversight for the rescue. We will not solve a problem caused by poor oversight with a plan that has no oversight. Never before in the history of our nation has so much power and money been concentrated in the hands of one person, and there must be protections and oversight in place. Second, as a part of that oversight, there must be a path for taxpayers to recover the money that is put into this fund. One trillion dollars is an unprecedented sum. We are talking about ten thousand dollars per household, and that money cannot simply go into a black hole of bad debt with no means of recovering any of the funds. Third, there must be complete transparency in the review of this legislation and in the implementation of any legislation. This cannot be cobbled together behind closed doors. The American people have the right to know which businesses will be helped, what that selection will be based on and how much that help will cost. All the details should all be made available online and elsewhere for open public scrutiny. Fourth, no Wall Street executives should profit from taxpayer dollars. It is wrong to ask teachers and farmers and small business owners to fill the gas tanks of the helicopters of Wall Street tycoons. The senior leaders of any firm that is bailed out should not be making more than the highest paid government official. Fifth and finally, it is completely unacceptable for any kind of earmarks to be included in this bill. It would be outrageous for legislators and lobbyists to pack this rescue plan with taxpayer money for favored companies. This simply cannot happen. Let me restate that inaction is not an option. The American people are watching. History will be our judge, and it will judge us harshly if we do not put our country first in this crisis.