Santelli Recalls February 2009: Bailout ‘Dissension was Born,’ ‘I Blew a Gasket’
CNBC’s Rick Santelli recalled the five-year anniversary of the stimulus, housing bailout and blowing “a gasket” during “Squawk on the Street” today.
“On Feb. 19 I blew a gasket. But basically, what was born at that point was the voice of dissension. How do we know that? Many of course still remember the IRS issues. President said maybe there wasn’t a smidgen of, of, of negativity there or news there or anything inappropriate there,” Santelli explained. “But it seems like, if you look back, it was February of 2009 where all of that started if you look at some of the IRS records. But dissension was born!”
Santelli recalled the stimulus calling it “Maybe the most unpopular program of all, really split the country.”
He went on in that segment to address comments made about the recent Congressional Budget Office study about the impact of a minimum wage increase saying, “This is America. Dissenting voices will continue to voice their dissent. Because they’ve read the operating instructions for the United States of America and it's their right.”
Five years earlier on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” on Feb. 19, 2009, that he “blew a gasket” saying “the government is promoting bad behavior.” Quickly, his speech on the trading floor became known as the “rant heard round the world.”
"I tell you what, I have an idea," Santelli shouted. "The new administration is big on computers and technology – how about this, president and new administration? Why don't you put up a website to have people vote on the Internet as a referendum to see if we really want to subsidize the losers' mortgages, or would we like to at least buy cars and buy houses in foreclosure and give them to people that might have a chance to actually prosper down the road and reward people that could carry the water instead of drink the water."
There had been no mention of the fifth anniversary of Santelli’s anti-bailout rant there was no mention of the event during the three hours of CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” on Feb. 19, 2013. Santelli was interviewed during the 8 a.m. hour about new housing data, but he was not asked about his 2009 rant or the Tea Party movement at all during the program.
— Julia A. Seymour is Assistant Managing Editor for MRC Business at the Media Research Center. Follow Julia A. Seymour on Twitter.