House passes bill taxing AIG and other bonuses - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

House passes bill taxing AIG and other bonuses

Americans protesting AIG bonuses Americans protesting AIG bonuses

WASHINGTON. - Acting with lightning speed, the Democratic-led House has approved a bill to slap punishing taxes on big employee bonuses from firms bailed out by taxpayers.

The vote was 328-93. Said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, "We want our money back and we want our money back now for the taxpayers."

Republicans called it a legally questionable ploy to paper over Obama administration missteps.

Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, said the bill was "a political circus" diverting attention from why the administration hadn't done more to block the bonuses before they were paid.

The bonuses, totaling $165 million, were paid to employees of troubled insurer American International Group, including to traders in the unit that nearly brought about the company's collapse.

Outrage continues over AIG's bailout bonuses

President Obama says he's outraged and he's not alone. Insurance giant AIG took a $170 billion bailout from the government and decided to hand out millions in bonuses.

The insurance giant has a lot of explaining to do and will get its chance tomorrow on Capitol Hill.
The debate over AIG's generosity is boiling over on Capitol Hill.

Americans are up in arms over AIG's decision to hand out big bonuses months after taking a huge handout from Uncle Sam.

President Obama says he's angry, too.

President Obama said "I mean how do they justify this outrage to the taxpayers who are keeping the company afloat?"

The White House says it's trying to see whether the bonuses can be stopped even though they're written into existing contracts.

White House Spokesman Robert Gibbs said "the President has asked Secretary Geithner and members of the Administration to exhaust all legal remedies in looking backwards to see what steps could be taken to block these bonuses." More...

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