From a press release issued by U.S. Rep. Rodney Alexander…
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Rodney Alexander, R-Quitman, today introduced legislation to combat irresponsible spending on the part of the federal government.
“The federal government does not maintain a comprehensive list of where it has spent taxpayer money,” said Alexander. “Hardworking taxpayers are the nation’s stockholders and should be treated as such. If the federal government is going to act as a private equity firm, or stockbroker, it must account for its actions—just as these groups do.
“The bill I introduced will do just that. It requires that the president present to Congress and the American public a clear documentation of private enterprises in which the government has a vested interest. When preparing the budget, the president would be required to submit ‘a statement that sets forth the debt of each bank, government-sponsored enterprise (GSE), and publicly traded or privately held company in which the government holds common stock, preferred stock, or warrants to purchase common stock (equity) equaling at least 10 percent of the company’s total outstanding common stock.’
“This legislation is completely straightforward. There are no clauses or exceptions. Simply put, if the government has a stake in a private enterprise it must report the liabilities of that company in the overall budget.
“It may not be breaking news to anyone that the federal deficit is out of control; however, even at these unprecedented levels, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, CITI Group, AIG, General Motors, and others, are not considered in the final total. The administration, and the agencies that fall under the umbrella of the executive branch, must answer to the individuals who pay the bill.
“Tax dollars are sent to Washington in full faith that the federal government will act as good stewards to promote, protect, and provide for the public. Instead, our financial backers are counting their losses. Rather than allow continued investment in companies deemed too big to fail, let’s hold them accountable.”
U.S. Rep. Rodney Alexander, R-Quitman, represents the 5th Congressional District and serves on the House Appropriations Committee.