Here was a chance for Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. to admit he was wrong, and to conclude publicly that government intervention in the private sector doesn’t always result in the best of outcomes.
McCain appeared on CNN’s Oct. 11 “State of the
“The president has said he’s considering new initiatives to help job creation,” King said. “They passed one stimulus plan and most Republicans, including John McCain, have been pretty critical of this $787-billion stimulus passed early in the year. Should the President do more now through government spending, though tax incentives or should he wait because, as you have said many times, we have so much red ink, we can’t afford much more?”
McCain, whose home state of
However, he added his thoughts on the previous instances of government intervention – where Congress, through the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP), authorized the federal government to bailout the troubled financial sector – giving the Treasury Department broad authority to act as they saw fit.
“What we’ve done, unfortunately, is we bailed out Wall Street, now they’re making billions, they’re making the deals, they’re giving the bonuses, and because they were too big to fail, we pumped – I don’t know, we still haven’t had a full accounting – into those major financial corporations and told financial institutions.”
However, during the 2008 financial crisis, McCain was at the forefront of supporting the bailout. Both he and his opponent, then-Sen. Barack Obama, voted for the TARP bailout. And just two weeks after McCain’s election defeat, his chief economic adviser, Douglas Holtz-Eakin, admitted it was a “strategic blunder” for McCain to support a bailout designed for Wall Street financial institutions.
The question remains – because King didn’t ask it – whether McCain regrets voting for TARP in 2008. But McCain did express his disappointment in how the bailout unfolded and how it was perceived by other Americans.
“We told them they were too big to fail,” McCain continued. “We told the guy on