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Bailout Watchdog Defends Independence From Treasury (Neil Barofsky is the SIGTARP)
ABC News ^ | 6/19/09 | Matthew Jaffe

Posted on 06/20/2009 6:19:36 PM PDT by Libloather

Bailout Watchdog Defends Independence From Treasury
June 19, 2009 5:28 PM
ABCNews' Matthew Jaffe reports:

Bailout watchdog Neil Barofsky today emphasized that his office was independent from the Treasury Department and the administration's decision to seek a Justice Department ruling was "unnecessary".

Barofsky, the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP), sent a letter to Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., about the ongoing dispute with Treasury, as both sides await a decision from DOJ's Office of Legal Counsel.

"We continue to believe the inquiry to OLC is unnecessary given the very clear intent of Congress regarding our independence," Barofsky wrote. "An adverse ruling from OLC could potentially have a serious impact on the independence of our agency and our ability to carry out our mandate; and we believe that Treasury's position on these issues are entirely unfounded and have little chance of persuading OLC. Of course, should Treasury take actions that would impede our ability to independently conduct audits and investigations, we would report such interference to Congress without delay."

Barofsky's letter, his first comments on the situation, came after Grassley and Republican members of the House Oversight Committee, led by ranking member Issa, inquired to the watchdog about the ongoing dispute.

While Barofsky did note that "to date Treasury has not withheld any documents from my office on the grounds of privilege", the Department did initially decline to provide documents on AIG's bonus program that the watchdog requested for an audit on the insurance giant, the recipient of $180 billion in bailout money.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Extended News; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: bailout; sigtarp; treasury; watchdog

1 posted on 06/20/2009 6:19:37 PM PDT by Libloather
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To: Libloather

The US government and the Treasury Department already have too much power and now they want more. It is time for the American people as a whole to say no to this kind of tyranny and control. It is time for the American people to take back America from its very own government and give the power back to the people to whom it rightfully belongs - to all of us as individuals, not a centralized all-powerful government.

2 posted on 06/20/2009 6:46:55 PM PDT by Ev Reeman
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