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  • The 10 Most Revealing Solyndra Emails

    On Thursday, the House Energy and Commerce Committee released a bombshell report detailing its investigation into bankrupt solar company Solyndra.

    Along with the report, the committee released a trove of emails between Solyndra stakeholders and administration officials. They paint a troubling picture of efforts to prop up the company despite its bleak economic outlook, and reactions to the company’s eventual bankruptcy.

    Scribe has compiled a list of the top 10 most revealing emails released as part of the investigation.

    1. The White House Office of Management and Budget held that the Energy Department’s decision to restructure Solyndra’s loan was “a bad idea” and would result in greater taxpayer losses.

    In March of 2011, DOE ignored the advice of White House budget officials and restructured Solyndra’s federally-backed loan, giving private investors priority in the repayment of their investments. DOE insisted that this would produce the greatest returns for taxpayers, but OMB officials, in a series of emails earlier that year, pondered ways to demonstrate to DOE that restructuring the loan would be “a bad idea.”

    OMB analyst Kelly Coylar crunched the numbers, and found that DOE would lose about $141 million if it allowed Solyndra to go bankrupt and liquidated its assets. A restructuring agreement, on the other hand, could more than double taxpayer losses, she wrote.

    2. White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley was briefed on Solyndra’s troubles before the Energy Department restructured its loan.

    The eventual restructuring agreement may have violated federal law, according to the Energy and Commerce Committee. It is of particular note, then, that then-White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley was briefed on the possibility of restructuring Solyndra’s federally-backed loan before that decision was made.

    3. President Obama’s Solyndra photo-op was then-CoS Rahm Emanuel’s idea.

    Emanuel has repeatedly said that he doesn’t remember anything about the Solyndra loan guarantee process. This email shows that he was heavily involved in White House efforts to promote the loan guarantee, most notably by suggesting the president conduct a photo-op at the company’s Fremont, CA headquarters.

    4. Even Solyndra’s investors knew that the company was a bad bet for taxpayers.

    In an email to Lawrence Summers, then the chair of the White House’s National Economic Council, Brad Jones, an advisor with Solyndra investor Redpoint Ventures, said that while the loan guarantee for Solyndra would prove beneficial for Redpoint, “I can’t imagine it’s a good way for the government to use taxpayer money.”

    5. Getting federal money was integral to Solyndra’s business model.

    “Getting business from Uncle Sam is a principal element of Solyndra’s channel strategy,” wrote Tom Baruch, founder of Solyndra investor CEMA Capital, in a August 10, 2010 email. When government takes it upon itself to pick winners and losers in the marketplace, securing government funds can be just as lucrative as conducting standard business activities, which inevitably directs more resources into unproductive political activities.

    6. Solyndra’s CEO referred to the federal government as the “Bank of Washington.”

    Solyndra was quite brazen about its government-centric business strategy, as this email from CEO Chris Gronet demonstrates.

    7. Solyndra was supposed to be a model of how government could empower the private sector.

    In an email to White House communications staffer Dan Pfeiffer, Aditya Kumar, a senior advisor to the Vice President, said Solyndra exemplified an oft-repeated administration talking point on green energy “investment”: “When Government Plays a Part, it can Bring the Private Sector Along.”

    Solyndra did bring the private sector along – all the way to its bankruptcy.

    8. The White House and Vice President’s office pressured DOE to move on the Solyndra loan guarantee, which in turn pressured OMB.

    In an August 28, 2009 email to Coylar, DOE official Steve Spinner, who headed up the Department’s Solyndra activities, said, “the OVP [Office of the Vice President] and WH [White House]” were “breathing down my neck” on the proposed Solyndra loan guarantee.

    Spinner was trying to speed up OMB’s analysis of the Solyndra project to fit with the White House’s schedule, which had already set a date for the president’s Solyndra photo-op. OMB would later confirm that it had rushed its Solyndra analysis under pressure from the White House.

    9. Upon news of the bankruptcy, DOE admitted it had “a serious problem at Solyndra.”

    Despite numerous attempts since Solyndra’s bankruptcy to downplay the scandal, emails exchanged upon news that the company would go under reveal that the DOE knew just how bad the bankruptcy was. “We have a serious problem at Solyndra,” Susan Richardson, chief counsel of DOE’s Loan Program’s Office, wrote.

    10. The White House’s reaction to Solyndra’s bankruptcy: “Ugh.”

    The White House also knew that Solyndra’s bankruptcy posed a problem, as evinced by then-White House advisor Stephanie Cutter’s reaction to the news – in one word: “ugh.”

    In an effort to downplay the scandal, Cutter has since insisted that Solyndra was “widely praised as successful and innovative.”

    Posted in Featured, Scribe [slideshow_deploy]

    19 Responses to The 10 Most Revealing Solyndra Emails

    1. Sandy Silver says:

      The tax payers want their money back!

    2. Ray Smith says:

      Three cheers for Obama, I want to see this story on the front page of every major news paper in the Country? I cannot believe that we have a president who is so stupid to fall for such a scandal! For a president to have a staff of such incompetent people who got him in this mess is unbelievable as well! A fifth grader could have done better evaluating the subject and they would have come to the conclusion, that no government money should be lent for this project! I have said it before, and I will say it again, how can any American voter, ever cast a vote for this guy who calls himself the President? Solyndra was just the tip of the Iceberg, what happened to the other trillion dollars this government had thrown down the drain?

      Ray Smith

      • ThomNJ says:

        Ray, he is not stupid enough to fall for this scandal – he is up to his neck in pushing this kind of thing. Remember, he is an idealogue of the first order and has been brainwashed since birth into believing that because "it should be, therefore it must be" – even if history and mankind's traits shows us otherwise.

    3. Jim Taylor says:

      Crony capitalism – pure and simple. Shouldn't wasting tax payer money for the benefit of a crony campaign donator without the prospect of a return to the tax payers be an impeachable event?

    4. pete says:

      It's not bad enough that solyndra took tax payer money, but at a time when they knew they were aboard a sinking ship they paid out bonuses that totaled tens of millions of dollars that an honest person would have returned to the taxpayers with an apology for their failure to use the money better.

      Then they compounded their felony and abuse by destroying unpaid for solar panels that could have been sold to a company that was still solvent, or returned to the manufacturer for credit.

      The actions of solyndra "leadership," in line with the current administrations actions, is nothing short of proof of the intent of both to do nothing for the American people as a whole, and to help themselves to all the available life boats while backing the Titanic into the iceberg for another hit.

    5. Larry Sinclair says:

      So…who's going to prison like in the private sector?

    6. Bobbie says:

      …and after held accountability, replace ALL the GUILTY governing people involved with people that have the sense of common decency and morals. Obama's governing people are incriminating the law abiding while covering crimes, corruption and criminals with tax dollars, desperate to increase taxes to cover their derelictions and the fact they lack human respect, self control and common decency.

      Hold accountable the criminal democratic hold backs! We the people are done suffering the consequences the work of the democratic party unfairly DUMPS ON US as if it's their job! Let them suffer their own consequences WITH ARRESTS AND REMOVAL OF THEIR PRESENCE IN AMERICA'S GOVERNMENT!!!!

      • Margaret says:

        Well said, Sir. But I fear common sense and concern for Americans will not be found (even with a microscope) in anyone associated with our current Poresident.

    7. Jeanne Stotler says:

      All involved need to b cargeunder the Ricco? act and jailed as well as fined, if a private company did this you would see tm in jail,same shold apply to those in public lfe as well this is OUR money.

    8. j s reder says:

      How much money did the Solyndra Corp dump into the re-election campaign for oboma? I know that many of the top exec's gave big bucks, what about the company iteself and other interested parties?
      j s reder.

    9. kenny9876 says:

      And to think this arrogant marxist is attacking real businesses, like mine, that built their operations without government aid. Incredible! His mind is so warped by marxist ideology that he think everyone must be on the take. After all, that's the Chicago way!

      Obama is the most divisive president in American history. His cold and cynical calculation in the class warfare game is that he gain more votes from those in the lower income brackets than from the so-called "rich" or business owners and creators. It's the same strategy as all his public employee union cronies pushing the "millionaires tax." The problem is, they're coming after the middle class next because eventually they'll run out of money and the economy will be in the toilet.

    10. Sandy Caruso says:

      Follow the Solyndra money directly to Obama's campaign coffers! Where's the congressional investigation?
      Oh I forgot it's DOJ Eric Holder sweep it under the carpet and be an accomplice to theft….theft from the American people.

    11. What did those jokers care sitting up in the White House. It was only OPM,(other peoples money). Everyone of them would be standing in the unemployment line if they were working in the private sector. Sickening.

      • Jeanne Stotler says:

        No they sould be in Prison, that's where people in private sector go, who mis-use OPM, why should hey be different

    12. LILLIS says:

      Is this the latest Obamagate to be ignored by the adoring mainstream media that continues to insult our intelligence by assuming that we may still be stupid enough to give the great spender 4 more years?

    13. commentasaguest says:

      hey we need a list of everyone that worked for or had anything to do with this. then we can ask each and everyone of them what did they think they were doing there ? did they ever consider that it was your neighbors money or your friend down the street ? maybe its even your babys doctor that lost money or the nurse that brought your kids into this world. what happens to them when you partisipate with a company thats wasting peoples money and disrupting all the peoples lives now becasue of the fiasco.

    14. LJ lady says:

      This is really unbelievable…They want to attack Romney over Bain which failed after Romney left?? This is ourtight fraud on the part of the Obama Administration…they knew Solyndra was failing and continued giving them taxpayer money???? Why aren't they being prosecuted? Now they have an ad attacking Romney —blaming him for a womens death because 6 yrs after he left Bain, the company failed and the workers lost their insurance??? What about all the people that died when Solyndra failed and people lost their jobs and had no insurance because of it failing….and the Obama administration knew it was failing. (this seems to really be evil as they knew it was failing)…..

    15. Chicago style politics is what we are getting and no accountability.

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