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Saturday, January 16, 2010

Obama's Goofy Bank Tax

President Obama must be realizing that the populism that he rode into the White House has turned into cynicism, and most people think he's far too cozy with Wall Street. That's the only thing that can explain this goofy idea.

President Barack Obama on Saturday pitched his proposed tax on banks to recover the cost of bailing them out during the financial crisis, saying if they can afford billions more in bonuses, they can pay back the taxpayers, too.

The banks and Republican lawmakers oppose the tax, which Obama announced this week.

"We're going to pass this fee into law," the president said in his weekly radio and Internet address.

There are so many problems with this, Constitutionally that is. This would be an ex post facto law. This wasn't part of the deal when banks took the money. You can't give someone money with one set of rules and then change it after the fact. That's an ex post facto law and it's clearly prohibited in the Constitution. Furthermore, many of the financial institutions targeted have paid the money back WITH INTEREST. How can you tax them on money they've paid back?

Worse yet, both Fannie/Freddie and the auto makers are exempt from this even though they have barely paid anything back yet. It's also a clear violation of the fourteenth amendment, which says that the law must apply to everyone equally. Clearly, this law would not.

I haven't seen any polling on this idea but I suspect this polls about as well as most of the ideas Obama has come up with. (meaning not all that well)

1 comment:

AG said...

Ex post facto only applies to criminal laws.