As Europeans scramble to put together a large enough bailout package to pay for the profligacy of Portugal, Italy, Greece and Spain, their lonely eyes turn to the United States. Knowing that they can’t come to Congress for aid, they are trying to end run around our legislative branch by funneling the aid through the International Monetary Fund (IMF), 17% of whose money comes from the United States.
If the IMF grants a $1.3 trillion line of credit to the ailing European nations, it has the potential to cost the American taxpayers $200 billion. And these funds can be appropriated without asking Congress.
Always happy to spend money, President Obama said this week that the U.S. “stands ready to do our part” in saving the European nations and, The Hill reports that Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said that “using U.S. tax dollars through the IMF to shore up Europe’s efforts was appropriate.”
Fortunately, Senators Jim DeMint (R-SC) and Tom Coburn (R-Okla) and Representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash) are planning legislation directing the U.S. government to veto the use of IMF funds to which we would be obliged to contribute to save southern Europe.
“I’m adamantly against the IMF being involved in this,” Coburn said. “We’re throwing good money after bad down a hole that I think is not a solvable problem.” Europe is going to default eventually, so why would you socialize their profligate spending.”
Europe could solve its own problems anytime it wished by promoting real regional and continental integration. Were Germany and France and Britain to stand behind the debts of Portugal, Spain, Italy and Greece, there would be no default or even much increase in interest rates for sovereign debt. But the German, French, and British voters are not happy about paying the bill for the profligacy of their southern neighbors. So an assumption of the debt of these teetering countries is out of the question.
Instead, they have come up with a new plan – get America to chip in through the IMF.
Let’s battle to get the DeMint-Coburn-Rodgers legislation approved. Sign this petition to Congress. Be sure to include your physical address and your email address so we can direct your signature to your specific member of Congress and Senators.
We must stop this bleeding ulcer from draining our Treasury. Let Europe solve its own problems, for once.
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