We got into this mess because Congress and the administration rushed through the Stimulus bill without sufficient time for legislators to review and debate the bill. Now Congress is trying to compound one set of mistakes with another by rushing through a bill to tax the retention bonuses paid to AIG employees. Fortunately there’s at least one grownup left on capitol hill:
Sen. Jon Kyl, the Republicans’ vote counter, blocked Democratic efforts Thursday evening to bring up the Senate version of the tax bill to recoup most of the $165 million paid out by AIG last weekend and other bonuses in 2009. The House had swiftly approved its version of the bill earlier in the day.
By rushing, Kyl said, Democrats were letting populist outrage trump informed decision making in the Senate, which is supposed to be insulated from the pressures of public passion.
“I don’t believe that Congress should rush to pass yet another piece of hastily crafted legislation in this very toxic atmosphere, at least without understanding the facts and the potential unintended consequences,” Kyl said on the Senate floor. “Frankly, I think that’s how we got into the current mess.”
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How to impose those taxes without running afoul of the Constitution or the law is a dispute that has Republicans urging a go-slow approach. Doing so, of course, would drag out the Democratic discomfort over administration missteps and provide plenty of time for the GOP and others to question Geithner’s performance.
Bravo Zulus for Senator Kyl, Congress needs to slow down, cool off and think this through before they pass a bill that has unintended consequences.
- Countrywide sues AIG unit over its failure to cover loan losses – Los Angeles Times
- ‘Don’t wear anything that says AIG on it’: Under-fire insurer gives employees security tips as fury over bonuses grows – Daily Mail
- AIG bonus outrage has employees living in fear – Associated Press
- Banker fury over tax ‘witch-hunt’ – Financial Times
- Sanity: Kyl blocks bill on AIG bonuses to give Senate time to think things over – Hot Air
- An Adult Steps up and Takes Control – Wizbang
- Are We A Banana Republic? – Powerline