Monday, January 12, 2009

Well That Was Fast!

Obama Asks Bush For Bailout Funds

By 10am this morning, George W. Bush was ending his final news conference as President. One particular quote drew my attention.

The reporters got matter-of-factly down to business, asking during the 45 minute session whether he would make any move in his last week in office to request the second half of the $700 billion bailout from Congress, but he demurred, suggesting that it is most likely that the new Congress will deal with the new president on that matter.
“I don’t intend to make the request unless he specifically asks me to make it,” he said, speaking of President-elect Barack Obama.
By 11:28am, Dana Perino made this statement:
This morning, President-elect Obama asked President Bush to formally notify Congress, on his behalf, of his intent to exercise the authority under the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act to access the last tranche of $350 billion in funding for Treasury programs addressing the financial crisis. President Bush agreed to the President-elect’s request. We will continue our consultations with the President-elect’s transition team, and with Congress, on how best to proceed in accordance with the requirements of the statute.
Bang! And just like that, what to me (and I may be over analyzing it) sounded like a challenge to Barack Obama to take over the reins became a resounding answer from the incoming President to just do exactly that, and thank you for opening the door - Obama gets the ball rolling on the remaining $350 billion in TARP funds eight days early.

I haven't seen any press reaction to this yet. I'll turn on my TV now for see which pundits are calling this move "presumptuous."

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