Ryan to Obama: Stay away from bailouts

May 20, 2012 at 2:29 PM
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WASHINGTON, May 20 (UPI) -- The Obama administration should leave it to the private market to rescue struggling companies, budget hawk Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis, said Sunday.

Ryan, chairman of the U.S. House Budget Committee, dismissed the success of Obama's bailout of the auto industry and accused the president of "gambling with taxpayer money" and abetting crony capitalism.

"What is right is a private sector that [has] risked that capital," Ryan said on "Fox News Sunday." "You put capital in businesses whether they're struggling or not to try and grow those businesses; some succeed, some don't."

Ryan said probable Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney had created "thousands of jobs" while at the investment firm Bain Capital while Obama's overall strategy had caused the economy to stagnate.

"We don't think that the government should be in the position of picking winners or losers in the economy which is the result of the president's economics," Ryan said.

Austen Goolsbee, former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, denied Obama was out to assist only certain favored companies. He also said the same venture capitalists in the private market were often not shy about turning to Uncle Sam for favors to help their new acquisitions such as tax breaks and the covering of pension obligations.

"In several of these bankruptcy cases, you saw the investors profit by dumping the pension on to the government and actually getting bailouts from the government, which helped to cover the profits that were going to the investors," Goolsbee said.

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