Tuesday, January 13, 2009

OBama Criticizes Bush on TARP bailout

Obama recently criticized President Bush for not doing a better job of tracking where the first $350 Billion of the TARP money went. Am I ignorant or is Obama who is ignorant on whose responsibility it is to specify tracking metrics, bench marks and other criteria when creating legislation? The legislature’s responsibility is to pass legislation. This legislation needs to be thought out. Some basic questions need to be:

What is the purpose of the legislation?
Is this a proper roll for US Taxpayers Money?
How do we measure the success or failure of the legislation (benchmarks)?
Who shall be placed in charge of tracking and measuring the success or failure of the legislation?

The legislature then votes on the written legislation. If there are differences between the house and senate versions, then a committee is formed to resolve those differences and both houses then vote again on the final bill. If approved by majority vote, the bill then goes to the executive branch (President of the United States) for signature. The president can veto a bill by two methods; letting it die (not signing it after some amount of time) or actually vetoing it. If the president vetoes the bill the legislature can over ride the veto by voting again and have a 2/3rds’ majority in favor of the bill.

Based on this, the executive branch does not make legislation nor does it place benchmarks on any legislation passed. It is the responsibility of the legislature to write the bill identifying how the bill is to be implemented. How did Obama vote on the TARP Bill? Did Obama vote present, neither for nor against? If so then he is no different than those who do not vote: you have no right to complain if you did not exercise your right to vote and voice your opinion. If you voted for the bill, then why did you vote for a bill that had no benchmarks? If Obama voted against the bill, then he has a right to complain about the lack of tracking, but it is not President Bush’s fault, but rather those like Congressman Souder’s who voted for the TARP Bailout.

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