Skip to comments.George Kaiser linked to Solyndra emails
Posted on 11/09/2011 2:12:42 PM PST by Minus_The_Bear
WASHINGTON Emails released by a House committee appear to show that a major donor to President Barack Obama's 2008 campaign discussed with White House officials a federal loan to a failed California solar company.
That's despite repeated assurances by Obama administration officials that the donor, George Kaiser, didn't discuss the loan with the White House.
The emails show that Kaiser, an Oklahoma billionaire, called the failed company, Solyndra Inc., a White House "poster child" on renewable energy. Solyndra received a $528 million loan from the Energy Department before it declared bankruptcy.
The emails were from Kaiser to an associate. It was not clear whether the emails also went to the White House, although they were obtained by the House committee through a subpoena of White House documents.
A White House spokesman acknowledged that while the emails suggest that Kaiser discussed Solyndra with the White House, the White House did not intervene in the loan, which was approved by the Energy Department.
George B. Kaiser (born 1943)is an American businessman. He is the Chairman of BOK Financial Corporation. He is among the top 100 richest people in the world.
In January 2009, Kaiser drew attention after he told a committee of the Oklahoma House of Representatives that the state should eliminate or reduce tax incentives for the oil and gas industry, and instead use the money for health care or education programs or for tax cuts for other taxpayers.
Kaiser was a fundraiser for the 2008 presidential campaign of Barack Obama, and functioned as a campaign bundler for Obama: an individual who collects contributions to a candidate from others that are then simultaneously given to the candidate. At one 2007 event for Obama, he raised more than $250,000.
An article by the nonpartisan and open government organization Sunlight Foundation’s Bill Allison has analyzed Kaiser’s business activities and his use of legal tax avoidance strategies, including how during the 1980s bust in the oil industry in Oklahoma and Texas. Kaiser bought up struggling energy companies whose losses provided him with tax deductions that effectively offset his own income and left him with little or no tax liability.
The report says Kaiser paid no taxes to the federal government for years and that when he did pay taxes, just once in a six-year period, it was just under $11,700, meaning he paid taxes on a taxable wage of $5.62 per hour. The report comes from the Sunlight Foundation’s Bill Allison. Allison’s post indicates many experts, including the IRS, believe Kaiser’s tax strategies were illegal
Solyndra Emails Claim Biden Team ‘About Had an Orgasm’ About Energy Loans to Firm
“They about had an orgasm in Biden’s office when we mentioned Solyndra,” reads a Feb. 27, 2010, email from Levit to Mitchell. A follow-up email from Mitchell to Levit later that day responds with: “That’s awesome! Get us a (Department of Energy) loan.”
According to exchanges obtained by Fox News, in an email from Mitchell to Kaiser on March 5, 2010, Mitchell writes that “it appears things are headed in the right direction and (Energy Secretary Steven) Chu is apparently staying involved in Solyndra’s application and continues to talk up the company as a success story.”
In a letter to the White House, House Energy and Commerce committee Chairman Fred Upton, R-Mich, and oversight panel chair Rep. Cliff Stearns, R-Fla., disclosed the emails including one from March 5, 2010 between Kaiser and Steve Mitchell, Kaisers venture capital firm Argonaut.
BTW, a couple of weeks ago, when Ken and I were visiting with a group of Administration folks in DC who are in charge of the stimulus process (White House, not DOE) and Solyndra came up, every one of them responded simultaneously about their thorough knowledge of the Solyndra story, suggesting it was one of their prime poster children.
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