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Msg  31209 of 43920  at  2/12/2009 5:30:24 PM  by


Senators Grill Geithner

<<<Another contentious exchange came when independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont wanted Geithner to call for the ouster of Wall Street chief executives, such as Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, who testified across Capitol Hill today on the House side.

"You have a person who made hundreds of millions for himself and he led his institution and helped cause a great financial crisis," said Sanders. "We have put as taxpayers $10 billion to bail him out and we have no say as to whether or not he will stay on the job?"

"I did not say that," noted Geithner. "I think there will be circumstances, as there have been already, where the government intervention will have to come with very tough conditions including changes in management leadership of institutions. And where we believe that makes sense, we will do that."

"I just asked you if you believe that’s the case with Goldman Sachs," pressed Sanders.

"In this case I’m not gonna change my answer, but I want to just say one thing: I feel deeply offended by the judgments you’ve seen these board of directors make," Geithner replied.

"But we’re not gonna fire the leadership?" Sanders asked. "And we’re gonna keep these same guys who caused the crisis in power and who made huge sums of money?"

"Where we think that is the most effective strategy for our country, we’ll do that," Geithner said.

"I strongly disagree," argued Sanders. "I think the American people -- if they’re going to pour hundreds of billions of dollars into these institutions -- want a new slate of leadership.">>>

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