Thursday, March 19, 2009

Consumer Advocates Call on President to Fire Treasury Secretary Geithner

/PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In a letter issued today, two consumer advocacy groups called on President Obama to obtain Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner's resignation.

The letter, from Harvey Rosenfield, the California-based consumer advocate who authored the state's insurance rate rollback Proposition 103, and Jim Donahue of the Washington-based WallStreetWatch.Org, asserts that Geithner has been unable to transcend his earlier role, while Chair of the New York Fed, as an architect of the failed Bush Administration Wall Street bailouts -- including the initial $80 billion AIG bailout.

Moreover, it appears the Treasury Department was aware of the latest round of bonus and retention payments but failed to announce them until after AIG issued $160 million in checks. Pointing out that the President has often called for "an open, honest government that would fight" for people, not special interests, it concludes that "In these grave days of national reckoning, the citizenry deserves better."

"It is clear that Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner cannot provide the requisite independence that is required in an environment in which financial institutions and other businesses are demanding trillions of dollars of taxpayer money," the letter to President Obama states. "With respect, we urge you to ask for his resignation."

Two weeks ago, WallStreetWatch.Org issued a 231-page report pinpointing twelve policy decisions by the federal government that led directly to the current financial calamity -- and how those policies were dictated by Wall Street through over $5 billion in campaign and lobbying expenditures between 1998 and 2008 by many of the same firms who are receiving American taxpayer dollars.

The letter calling for Geithner's resignation, and "Sold Out: How Wall Street and Washington Betrayed America," are available at:

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