GOP Says Energy Dept Tried To Delay Solar Layoffs

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican investigators say the Obama administration wanted the failing solar energy company Solyndra to delay announcing employee layoffs until after the 2010 midterm elections.

A memo prepared by GOP staff at the House Energy and Commerce Committee cites an October 2010 email from an unnamed Solyndra investment adviser to another unidentified investment adviser. The email, according to committee aides, said Energy Department officials were pushing “very hard” to delay making the layoffs public until Nov. 3, 2010 — the day after the midterm elections.

Solyndra announced some layoffs on Nov. 3, 2010, after the election, but continued to receive federal assistance. The company closed its doors on Aug. 31, 2011 and laid off its 1,100 workers.

Energy Department spokesman Damien LaVera on Tuesday declined to confirm events described in the emails or to identify who at the Energy department may have urged the delay in the layoff announcement. He said “decisions about this loan were made on the merits.”

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • Ankush

    Scott, Obama inherited this eoncomy. I agree with you. Obviously it has been too tough for President Obama to handle. The good news is we can fix that in November. If McCain had been elected things would be no better, to blame Obama for the eoncomy is simply wrong. You can’t know that .Obviously McCain would have made different decisions. Things would have been better or worse, they certainly would not have been the same . My guess is that unemployment under President McCain would be 1.5% lower right now and Democrats would be calling for his head and probably getting it . Obama has benefited from two facts that have allowed him to remain popular with his dismal record . First a lot of people are emotionally invested in his historic Presidency. Second, the public blamed Republicans for the recession and since he is in the other party, his grace period is really long. Think of Obama as an NFL coach brought in to turn around a franchise . He has had 3 nearly winless seasons in a row .His forth season is getting better, but I doubt it will be good enough to keep him from being fired by the owners, the voters. One can still criticize actions he took, but in a case like this the President can only make a marginal difference, the recession has to run its course, the imbalances have to work themselves out. Imbalances work themselves out faster when the President does not engage in open warfare with the private sector . Imbalances work themselves out faster when a President does not run up huge debts by using a $ 787 Billion stimulus as a slush fund to reward political favorites .Solyndra is as bad as it sounds . Donors to the Obama campaign are linked to Solyndra. Officials within the government warned the administration against it . But as is a constant, politics trumped good policy .How about we judge Obama against the expectations he and his people raised? Unemployment not rising above 8%. 4 million new green jobs . These are his standards, not mine .

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