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Fox News' Shepard Smith Pounds Democrats for Their Role in the AIG Bonus Debacle

I'm not a big fan of Shepard Smith, but he speaks the truth passionately here about how the AIG bonus debacle went down. It's very educational. And by the way, when he says Congress did this, he means the Democrats. You can't claim the stimulus, which contained Chris Dodd's amendment that allowed the bonuses to go through, was a bipartisan effort when only three Republicans out of two houses of Congress voted for the thing. Thanks to Johnny Dollar for the video:

Update: Dodd admits the amendment was his. But he's passing the buck to Treasury:

According to Dodd, officials at Treasury expressed concern that if the government were to prohibit payouts, it risked being sued by companies like AIG, which had contracts stipulating that bonuses were to be paid.

Update II: CNN has more on Dodd admitting to the AIG bonus loophole:

Senate Banking committee Chairman Christopher Dodd told CNN Wednesday that he added language to the federal stimulus bill to make sure contracts for bonuses at companies receiving federal bailout money stayed in place.

Dodd told CNN's Dana Bash and Wolf Blitzer that Obama administration officials wanted the language added to an amendment limiting bonuses that could be paid by those companies. He said they were afraid that without it, the government would face numerous lawsuits.

On Tuesday, Dodd denied to CNN that he had anything to do with adding the language, which has been used by officials at AIG to justify paying millions of dollars in bonuses to executives after receiving federal money.


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Comments (47)

Good one Shep! Kick those ... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Good one Shep! Kick those hypocrites in the balls. Maybe we'll get their attention. The lying, ass covering bastards!

But, but, the Betrayer-in-C... (Below threshold)
John:

But, but, the Betrayer-in-Chief thinks it's great to go on Leno. What an asshole...

I hate Shep, but he does oc... (Below threshold)
SillyPuddy:

I hate Shep, but he does occasionally get it right like he did this afternoon.

which contained Chris Do... (Below threshold)
Brian:

which contained Chris Dodd's amendment that allowed the bonuses to go through

Blatant lie, even when you write it in bold italics.

"Blatant lie, even when you... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"Blatant lie, even when you write it in bold italics."

Would you be so kind as to 'cut and paste' the relevant quote, so that we need not wade through pages of bullshit to find the information.

Thanks, ever so.

Brian, I guess Senator Dodd... (Below threshold)
Eric:

Brian, I guess Senator Dodd is blatantly lying when he admits that he inserted the amendment.

"I would have preferred that we kept my language, as it left the Senate unanimously," Dodd added. "In fact there were objections when I wrote the language even before it left the Senate. ... The administration expressed reservations with the amendment. They came to us and asked for modifications in the amendment. The alternative was, of course, losing the amendment entirely, which was a possibility. I didn't want to see that happen. I suspect we would be having a conversation tonight why we didn't include some language in here to deal with bonuses, golden parachutes and the like. ... I don't believe anyone had any idea, I certainly didn't, that a month and a half later from February we would be talking about AIG and the bonuses they are receiving for their retentions, these $165 million. So that was never a part of the consideration."
And today, so many dems in ... (Below threshold)
retired military:

And today, so many dems in the house voted that they could keep the bonuses.

Yes they did...hope and cha... (Below threshold)
John:

Yes they did...hope and change you can believe in...

By the way Brian, are you b... (Below threshold)
Eric:

By the way Brian, are you blatantly lying by linking to the wrong page of the wrong version of the Act?


``(iii) The prohibition required under clause (i) shall not be construed to prohibit any bonus payment required to be paid pursuant to a written employment contract executed on or before February 11, 2009, as such valid employment contracts are determined by the Secretary or the designee of the Secretary.

From the people who railed ... (Below threshold)
jmc:

From the people who railed loud and hard against capping executive pay and bonuses for bailout reciepeients because it was communisim, comes the phony outrage the minute it might score a political point. Gotta love it.

"From the people who railed... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"From the people who railed loud and hard against capping executive pay and bonuses for bailout reciepeients because it was communisim, comes the phony outrage the minute it might score a political point. Gotta love it."

IIRC, most of us were screaming about the %$#[email protected] bail-out in the first place!

It's interesting to see the... (Below threshold)
cirby:

It's interesting to see the "but Dodd put IN an amendment to restrict bonuses!"

What really happened was that there were originally supposed to be immediate restrictions on bonus plans, but the Dodd amendment REPLACED that with a section allowing them until February 11th, 2009 - which let all of the companies with bonus schedules to go right ahead, as long as they gave the money out before then.

They put a really good lock on that barn. Too bad the horses were already stolen.

The ones who voted for the ... (Below threshold)
Wayne:

The ones who voted for the bill without giving anyone a chance to read it much less a chance to offer amendments owns the entire bill. This would be almost all congressional Democrats and 3 RINOs. If they would have given people a chance to read it and to offer amendments then they would only be responsible for the parts they voted for or against. However they wrote the bill behind closed doors in the dark of the night. The Dems and 3 RINOs own the whole thing. The "I didn't know" excuse doesn't cut it.

Dodd hahaha<a href="... (Below threshold)
SillyPuddy:

Dodd hahaha
http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2009/03/023101.php
"So it's a mystery! I suppose that's what happens when you adopt legislation without taking time to read it."
---

Dodd flat out denied having... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

Dodd flat out denied having any part in the amendment:

In an interview with CNN, Dodd denied inserting that exemption at the 11th hour, and insisted he doesn't know how it got there.
"When I wrote the language there was no such language like that," Dodd told CNN Tuesday.

I guess when bare-faced lying doesn't work, deflect attention and blame it on someone else.

And we're to have faith and trust in these people?

And I sometimes wonder what part of jmc's body is directing his fingers over the keyboard....

Sorry, Thomas times out sea... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Sorry, Thomas times out search links, so you'll just have to deal with this:

In fact, as the article itself noted, "[w]hile the Senate was constructing the $787 billion stimulus last month, Dodd added an executive-compensation restriction to the bill" [emphasis added]. Indeed, Dodd's amendment as introduced directed the Treasury secretary to require each Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) recipient to "meet appropriate standards for executive compensation and corporate governance": "a prohibition on such TARP recipient paying or accruing any bonus, retention award, or incentive compensation during the period that the obligation is outstanding to at least the 25 most highly-compensated employees, or such higher number as the Secretary may determine is in the public interest with respect to any TARP recipient."

The Senate adopted Dodd's amendment by voice vote. Subsequently, the conference committee assigned to work out the differences between the Senate version of the recovery bill and the House version -- included Dodd's amendment "with several modifications" in its version of the bill. Among those modifications, the bill adopted by the conference committee included the following language:

The prohibition required under clause (i) shall not be construed to prohibit any bonus payment required to be paid pursuant to a written employment contract executed on or before February 11, 2009, as such valid employment contracts are determined by the Secretary [of the Treasury] or the designee of the Secretary.

The amendment as modified by the conference committee was included in the final recovery bill passed by Congress and signed by President Obama.


I like it. Kinda like Olber... (Below threshold)
RB:

I like it. Kinda like Olbermann, with two exceptions: a) he's supporting his rant with indisputable facts; b) no froth.

Brian, I guess Senator D... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Brian, I guess Senator Dodd is blatantly lying when he admits that he inserted the amendment.
"I would have preferred that we kept my language, as it left the Senate unanimously," Dodd added.

No, you just apparently can't read. You even quote Dodd saying that it was not his language.

Brian,I frequently... (Below threshold)
RB:

Brian,

I frequently post links to bills in my company (an association) newsletter. With some additional clicks, you can "isolate" the URL for the bill. What's the bill number? I'll look it up and post the URL here.

By the way Brian, are yo... (Below threshold)
Brian:

By the way Brian, are you blatantly lying by linking to the wrong page of the wrong version of the Act?

You're linking to the bill as it came out of conference committee, not to Dodd's amendment. Were you blatantly lying by linking to the wrong page?

Taking bets on the immigrat... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Taking bets on the immigration bill due soon from Obama. One week after it passes in the dead of night and Obama doesnt read it the White House will be outraged, I tell you OUTRAGED, that 20 million immigrants gained the right to vote, social security, unemployment, food stamps, free medical care, and free college tuition and that wasnt intended to happen.

Then it will get blamed on Bush as last year's business.

What really happened was... (Below threshold)
Brian:

What really happened was that there were originally supposed to be immediate restrictions on bonus plans, but the Dodd amendment REPLACED that with a section allowing them until February 11th, 2009 -

Wrong. What really happened was that the Dodd amendment said no such thing, and the conference committee added some modifications to it:

SENATE AMENDMENT The provision modifies and expands the present law non-tax TARP executive compensation rules. The modifications include: ... (3) prohibiting a TARP recipient from paying or accruing any bonus, retention award, or incentive compensation to at least the 25 most highly compensated employees; ...

CONFERENCE AGREEMENT
The conference agreement follows the Senate amendment with several modifications. Among the modifications are ... (2) rules
that phase-in the restriction on bonuses, retention awards, and other incentive compensation by the amount of financial assistance received by the entity receiving TARP assistance, and that permit compensation to be paid in the form of restricted stock; and (3) and a directive to the Secretary of the Treasury to review compensation paid to senior executive officers and the next 20 most highly compensated employees of an entity receiving TARP assistance before the date of enactment to determine whether such payments were inconsistent with the provision, the TARP, or public interest.

What's the bill number? ... (Below threshold)
Brian:

What's the bill number? I'll look it up and post the URL here.

It's H.R.1. But getting links to the amendments is proving to be tricky. Do a search on Dodd, get this:

15. S.AMDT.354 to H.R.1 To impose executive compensation limitations with respect to entities assisted under the Troubled Asset Relief Program. Sponsor: Sen Dodd, Christopher J. [CT] (introduced 2/4/2009)

Click on that goes here showing "TEXT OF AMENDMENT AS SUBMITTED: CR S1609-1610".

Click on that goes here, scroll down to "Page: S1609", click that, and go here.

SEC. 6002. EXECUTIVE COMPENSATION AND CORPORATE GOVERNANCE.

(a) In General.--During the period in which any obligation arising from financial assistance provided under the TARP remains outstanding, each TARP recipient shall be subject to--

(1) the standards established by the Secretary under this title; and

(2) the provisions of section 162(m)(5) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as applicable.

(b) Standards Required.--The Secretary shall require each TARP recipient to meet appropriate standards for executive compensation and corporate governance.

(c) Specific Requirements.--The standards established under subsection (b) shall include--

(1) limits on compensation that exclude incentives for senior executive officers of the TARP recipient to take unnecessary and excessive risks that threaten the value of such recipient during the period that any obligation arising from TARP assistance is outstanding;

(2) a provision for the recovery by such TARP recipient of any bonus, retention award, or incentive compensation paid to a senior executive officer and any of the next 20 most highly-compensated employees of the TARP recipient based on statements of earnings, revenues, gains, or other criteria that are later found to be materially inaccurate;

(3) a prohibition on such TARP recipient making any golden parachute payment to a senior executive officer or any of the next 5 most highly-compensated employees of the TARP recipient during the period that any obligation arising from TARP assistance is outstanding;

(4) a prohibition on such TARP recipient paying or accruing any bonus, retention award, or incentive compensation during the period that the obligation is outstanding to at least the 25 most highly-compensated employees, or such higher number as the Secretary may determine is in the public interest with respect to any TARP recipient;

(5) a prohibition on any compensation plan that would encourage manipulation of the reported earnings of such TARP recipient to enhance the compensation of any of its employees; and

(6) a requirement for the establishment of a Board Compensation Committee that meets the requirements of section 6003.

(d) Certification of Compliance.--The chief executive officer and chief financial officer (or the equivalents thereof) of each TARP recipient shall provide a written certification of compliance by the TARP recipient with the requirements of this title--

(1) in the case of a TARP recipient, the securities of which are publicly traded, to the Securities and Exchange Commission, together with annual filings required under the securities laws; and

(2) in the case of a TARP recipient that is not a publicly traded company, to the Secretary.


Dodd denied it yesterday sa... (Below threshold)
Wayne:

Dodd denied it yesterday saying it was put in without his knowledge in the committee.

Today he admitted he knew about the change and agree to put it in but didn't realize what he was doing.

They show both videos on FOX just a few minutes ago.

Dodd flat out denied hav... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Dodd flat out denied having any part in the amendment:

Why are you lying? You even quote Dodd saying that he was totally responsible for the amendment the Senate passed, but had no part in the modifications that the conference committee made to that amendment. And to you that's "Dodd flat out denied having any part in the amendment"?! You quote Dodd contradicting what you say he said! How dumb is that?

I guess when bare-faced lying doesn't work, deflect attention and blame it on someone else.

I guess when you don't know what you're talking about, that's how it looks to you.

Read for yourself Brian... (Below threshold)
Wayne:
Sorry Brian, you've been pu... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Sorry Brian, you've been punked. Go talk to Dodd about it.

GarandFan ... funny stuff, ... (Below threshold)
marc:

GarandFan ... funny stuff, but it's hardly earth shattering when brian gets punked.

Count done the seconds 'til brian calls Dodd a liar.

Lets see. You fol... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Lets see.

You follow the link and they have a video which they (CNN ) has

Watch: I'm responsible for bonus loophole, Dodd says


and then underneath they have the statement

"On Tuesday, Dodd denied to CNN that he had anything to do with the adding of that provision.

"

Now this is CNN mind you. Not Fox news.

Brian, are you man enough to admit you are wrong?

<a href="http://www.foxnews... (Below threshold)
SillyPuddy:
What I said:T... (Below threshold)
Brian:

What I said:

  1. The loophole was not in Dodd's amendment, which passed the Senate unanimously.
  2. The loophole was added in conference committee.
  3. Dodd never denied being involved in the amendment (he was the sponsor, natch).
  4. Dodd denied having anything do with the loophole being added in conference committee.

All of that is true. And the statements made in this thread in contrast to those true facts were and are lies.

As it turns out, Dodd is also a liar, and actually was involved in the loophole being added in conference committee. For that, he's an ass who deserves what he gets, and I regret defending him. But that he lied about his involvement does not change the facts of when the loophole was added, nor do his lies make it OK for those lambasting him to lie about the circumstances.

You know, if anyone had wri... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

You know, if anyone had written the last few months as political fiction, no way it ever would have gotten published. It'd be too unbelieveable, the characters would be too stupidly self-centered and grasping to be even caricatures.

Well, only 3 years and 10 months to go...

"Brian, are you man enough ... (Below threshold)
retired military:

"Brian, are you man enough to admit you are wrong?"

Umm

That would be a no.

And Marc

It took Brian a few hours to call Dodd a Liar.

Dare I say it.Dodd... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Dare I say it.

Dodd lied, Brian cried.

UmmThat would be ... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Umm
That would be a no.

I was wrong for believing Dodd, and wrong for defending him. I said above, "I regret defending him". But I was not wrong in correcting the facts that were distorted in this thread.

It took Brian a few hours to call Dodd a Liar.

Two hours (between comments 26 and 31) is "a few"? I apologize for having dinner and forcing you to stand waiting in your puddle of drool.

Brian"Two hours (b... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Brian

"Two hours (between comments 26 and 31) is "a few"? "

http://dictionary.die.net/a%20few

"a few
adj : more than one but indefinitely small in number; "a few
roses"; "a couple of roses"

Do you have a problem with simple English? I could have said a couple. Would that have been more pleasing to your bruised ego that your hero disappointed you by being caught lying throug his teeth.

Dodd lied, Brian cried.

As you cite a perfect examp... (Below threshold)
Brian:

As you cite a perfect example of the convention of using "couple" for 2, "few" for more than that. 'Nuff said.

And my ego's fine, thanks. Actually, yours is probably most affected by this. After all the attacks Republicans have been slinging towards Democrats, you were finally right about one. You must be positively giddy.

Dodd lied, RM's brain died.

Shep, I've been fuming for ... (Below threshold)
Mark Smith:

Shep, I've been fuming for months about these pompous, sanctimonious buffoons spraying spittle over everyone in sight, trying to divert attention from their own culpability in this mess. We've all been trying to find our voice in this matter and you, sir, appear to be it.

Next up? Baaaaney's Fwwwwan... (Below threshold)
ODA315:

Next up? Baaaaney's Fwwwwank

Wow brian defending the dem... (Below threshold)
Trent:

Wow brian defending the democraps again honestly pelosi could run over an old lady crossing the street and he'd defend her

I just like whenever chris ... (Below threshold)
Trent:

I just like whenever chris dodd or the democraps say something brian believes them honestly Pelosi can say Rush limbaugh killed her daughter in a drunk driving accident and he'd beleive her even though pelosi's daughter is still alive and standing right behind her mother

Brian to me: "Why are yo... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

Brian to me: "Why are you lying? You even quote Dodd saying that he was totally responsible for the amendment the Senate passed, but had no part in the modifications that the conference committee made to that amendment. And to you that's "Dodd flat out denied having any part in the amendment"?! You quote Dodd contradicting what you say he said! How dumb is that?"

Mr. Pedant, yes, he had a part in the amendment. He sponsored it. Duh. He flat out denied he had knowledge of the change to the amendment. He claimed he didn't know how it got in there after his initial 'language'.

You didn't like the quote I used? How about this one? - "I agreed reluctantly," Dodd said. "I was changing the amendment because others were insistent."

He wrote the amendment and then changed it and then feigned surprise that it was changed.

As I said: I guess when bare-faced lying doesn't work, deflect attention and blame it on someone else. Then count on people like Brian to pick your words apart and call you the liar.

Dodd has admitted he pushed... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Dodd has admitted he pushed for the amendment. So Brian, please take your books and go to the quiet carpet. Thanks. ww

I'm glad I came to this thr... (Below threshold)
Tim:

I'm glad I came to this thread late. The story seems to be ever-changing with backtracks and sideslips and contradictions and refutations. I'm afraid I'd be on both sides of this issue, sometimes at the same time. Can we just drop all the lied stuff? Things that were true became not true and vice versa then reversed again. Sometimes. Let's just agree that whole thing was a fiasco. They rushed the bill through, no one read it, no one read the amendments, and now they're surprised what's in it. Helluva a way to run a place.

Tim Trying to calm t... (Below threshold)
Wayne:

Tim
Trying to calm the lying accusation among the posters I understand but to say that Dodd didn't lied is outrageous.

Wayne, I think we both agre... (Below threshold)
Tim:

Wayne, I think we both agree on that. It's just that we're not sure which of Dodd's statements were lies and which were true. Each time the Democrats shift the blame back and forth, it makes one side of the argument or the other look bad. Maybe we should just come to a consensus that the Dems completely screwed the pooch on this one.

There was an agreed-upon co... (Below threshold)
Agnes:

There was an agreed-upon contract to pay these workers a bonus based on set criteria. The employees did their jobs. Yes, if the company had folded they would not have received a cent. That is not the point. AIG said they wanted to pay the bonuses and our ELECTED OFFICIALS SAID YES. Do not blame the employees ... blame Bush, Paulson, Geithner, OBAMA, Dodd, Frank and the others. ALL of them knew about these bonuses. AIG's employees are taking the brunt of this mess and ALL THEY DID WAS THEIR JOBS. How would you like to be yelled at, have buses of ACORN people stop by your house and scream at you, have your children shunned at school, and all for doing your job? They did not request bonuses -- they were PROMISED bonuses. Put yourself in their places, and get your mind out of the witch-hunting days. THEY DID NOTHING WRONG. Congress and our presidents DID THE WRONG THING and they are wimping out by not standing up and admitting it, like real men. Congress and our The-Buck-Stops-With-Me-NOT! president pass the blame on to the employees who were told one thing, and got quite another thing. This is cruel, and as Americans, we should be ashamed of ourselves and how we're dealing with the lies and scapegoats. Contact your president and tell him that if he wants to be president, he needs to act like one. Call your congressman and tell him/her to shoulder the blame for the messes they are making. Citizenship is not a spectator sport. Get involved and vote these apparently weak people out of office. We deserve better representation than we are getting.




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