Matt Dempsey Matt_Dempsey@epw.senate.gov (202) 224-9797
Katie Brown Katie_Brown@epw.senate.gov (202) 224-2160
Solyndra and Armendariz: Two of Obama’s Major Energy Blunders Back in the Spotlight
Today Marks One Year Anniversary of Solyndra’s Collapse; EPA’s Former “Crucify Them” Administrator Holds Twitter Town Hall on Promise of Clean Energy
Washington, D.C. – Today two of President Obama’s biggest blunders came back to haunt him: Solyndra and Armendariz. Ironically, today marks the one year anniversary of the complete collapse of Solyndra, and former Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 6 Administrator Al Armendariz, who made himself famous by declaring on video that EPA’s “general philosophy” was to “crucify” and “make examples” of American energy producers, held a Twitter town hall meeting to tout the Sierra Club’s efforts to end coal production in America and promote President Obama’s efforts to pour even more taxpayer dollars into companies like Solyndra.
Interestingly, when the Inhofe-EPW Press office asked Armendariz during the Twitter townhall today: “What grade would you give President Obama on stopping coal production in the United States?” Armendariz refused to answer and instead tweeted in reply, “I am proud of the work of the Administration, thru EPA, to keep the rivers and lakes of Oklahoma clean.”
“Today two of President Obama’s biggest headaches, Solyndra and his ‘crucify them’ EPA Administrator, came back to haunt him,” Senator Inhofe said. “For some reason, Dr. Armendariz chose today of all days to try and launch himself back into the public eye. Yet what was interesting is that Dr. Armendariz refused to answer the simple question about what grade he would give his old boss, President Obama, on killing coal in the United States. The radical environmental left has been silent on Obama’s environmental record lately, allowing him to take an ‘incomplete’ grade while he’s looking for votes, undoubtedly because they know he will do everything possible to earn an A in their books if he gains a second term.”
“Let’s also not forget that during the era of ‘hope’ and ‘change’ President Obama hailed Solyndra saying, ‘companies like Solyndra are leading the way toward a brighter and more prosperous future.’ Vice President Joe Biden said that the loan guarantee to Solyndra was an ‘unprecedented investment this Administration is making in renewable energy and exactly what the Recovery Act is all about’ and Energy Secretary Steven Chu said that it was part of ‘a broad, aggressive effort to spark a new industrial revolution that will put Americans to work.’ It didn’t exactly turn out that way: one year ago today, Solyndra was forced to file bankruptcy and nearly 1,900 workers were laid off. Now on the anniversary of its collapse, it is being reported that Solyndra's investors could receive up to $341 million in tax breaks, so the pain for the taxpayer continues under this administration’s failed energy policies. Yet, Armendariz continues to say the 'solution is clean renewables' and President Obama continues forward with his plan to pour even more taxpayer dollars into companies that cannot survive with even with massive federal subsidies.”