Congress wants tax on executives' bonuses - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Congress wants tax on executives' bonuses

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WASHINGTON. - President Obama is vowing to get all the taxpayers money back from the huge bank bailout.

Thursday, the president proposed a new tax on banks to recoup what's still outstanding, and Congress wants to tax the bank executives' bonuses as well.

"If these companies are in good enough shape to afford massive bonuses, they are surely in good enough shape to pay back every penny to taxpayers," said President Obama.

The plan would result in $117 billion paid over 12 years to recover what's still due from the bailout.

Separately, lawmakers want to tax half of any bank bonus over $50,000 and lend that money to small businesses.

"It is time for them to get the message that the money we put in to the banking industry was not to line their pockets," said Washington Representative Jim McDermott.

Still, some Republicans oppose any tax in a recession.

"Once they put it in place, you're never going to get rid of it," argued Tennessee's Rep. Marsha Blackburn.

Some small banks and automakers that got bailouts wouldn't be taxed at all.

Critics say that's unfair.

Meanwhile, the commission investigating Wall Street crisis met again Thursday, grilling the government about whether an FBI warning about mortgage fraud four years before the meltdown was ignored.

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