March 18th, 2009
02:14 PM ET
5 years ago

Barney Frank: Ownership issue key to recouping AIG bonuses

On Wednesday's 'American Morning,' Rep. Barney Frank, who chairs the House Finance Committee, shared what was legally and legislatively within the government's power on recovering the AIG bonuses.
On Wednesday's 'American Morning,' Rep. Barney Frank, who chairs the House Finance Committee, shared what was legally and legislatively within the government's power on recovering the AIG bonuses.

(CNN) – As the tide of outrage over AIG bonuses continued unabated Wednesday, a congressional committee became the epicenter of the issue as Edward Liddy, CEO and chairman of the troubled insurer, prepared to answer questions about executive bonuses.

On Wednesday's "American Morning," Rep. Barney Frank, who chairs the House Finance Committee, shared what was legally and legislatively within the government's power on recovering the AIG bonuses and reforming the whole financial incentive system.

Watch: Bonuses not deserved, Frank says

Kiran Chetry, CNN anchor: When he appears before your committee today, what type of assurances are you guys seeking from Mr. Liddy with regard to these bonuses?

Rep. Barney Frank, D-Massachusetts: Well, I don't have a lot of confidence in Mr. Liddy's view at this point. When he said that first he couldn't get the money back because they had contractual rights but also that he was worried about not retaining them, it left me unconvinced he's really going to be trying.

CNN's Lisa Desjardins and John Lisk reveal what's ahead for AIG on Capitol Hill.

To subscribe to this podcast, go to cnn.com/podcast.

Full Story


Filed under: AIG • Barney Frank
soundoff (20 Responses)
  1. Jimbo

    Barney owns this whole mess. Of course he wants to deflect and have you focus on AIG, but the whole meltdown is on his watch and he suckered all of America into believing it was OK. Not to mention the whole AIG bonus exception in the package. Why do people keep electing this guy?

    March 18, 2009 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  2. Joe

    Well Barney Frank, most of the US public do not have confidence in you after the debacle at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac which YOU WERE MADE AWARE OF and chose not to do anything about. You are just a Grand Stander..

    March 18, 2009 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  3. The One

    The key is to recover all of the money Barney Frank received from financial services companies.

    March 18, 2009 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  4. Rose

    I don't believe on word that comes from Barney Frank's mouth. I think he is part of the original problem to begin with and so was his buddy Chris Dodd. They both need to get out of Washington and take Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi with them. This whole mess is starting to look worse than the previous eight years, they are all tax dodgers and downright crooks.

    March 18, 2009 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  5. yuri

    Barney! You'd better blast thru the AIG issue like a bulldozer so they can be better at their answers that bear the brunt of their own actions.

    March 18, 2009 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  6. Hypocrites

    This guy is a key reason for the banking debacle in the first place and now he wants to reach in from government to recoup bonus money from private individuals? This is just another attempt to trample on the constitution by a civil servant who wont take responsibility for his own mistakes. This guy shouldnt be a dog catcher let alone a United States congressman. He should be the one getting it in the end. Oh sorry I'm sure he would like that.

    March 18, 2009 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  7. Tony

    TO ALL POLTICIANS!!!!!

    PUT UP OR SHUT UP...we do not need a repeat of the last 8 disastrous years.

    March 18, 2009 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  8. LIP

    Throw Barney in jail, please. It will be the only satisfaction for the millions who have lost money due to his and Chris Dodd's incompetence when Bush begged them to create oversight and they laughed in his face five different times. It is at U-Tube for viewing.

    March 18, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  9. Eugene

    It may be time for the Treasury secretary to be sacked after it has become clear how he opposed limiting bonuses for AIG and other of his friends on Wall Street. Obama needs to serve Main Street, and his man does not seem up to the task.

    March 18, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  10. Gary

    I hope we recoup this bonus money.

    Barney Frank however should be in jail over this entire mortgage crisis. He has very close ties (and taken contributions) from Fannie Mae and these bailed out banks and has a history of fighting against bank oversight. He is pathetic.

    March 18, 2009 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  11. Hypocrites

    This money was written into contracts!!! Does anyone understand that!! When contracts can be broken with the stroke of a legislative pen then thats going down a very dangerous path. It would weaken the power of a contract and further empower lawyers to fight anything they felt would generate dollars.

    March 18, 2009 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  12. Fitz in Texas

    You own all this Mr. Frank. No doubt if your mouth is moving the chances are real good you are not telling the truth.

    Say what you want about it Bush, but he wanted an oversight into Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Barney Frank needs to spend some time in jail.

    March 18, 2009 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  13. Jim Hahn

    There is a very easy way to get the money back. Send each recipient a letter stating that if they bonus is not repaid within 10 or 15 days, their name, community and the amount received would be published in at least one major newspaper.

    You'll have 90% of the funds back in no time.

    March 18, 2009 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  14. Sammy

    And just what legal basis can the guy point to that overrides a legally signed and binding employment contract...even a bad one?

    March 18, 2009 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  15. steve

    And to think, Barney Frank is among the more intelligent on the comittee. And you ask – Why is our country in such bad shape? Just look at who we elect.

    March 18, 2009 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  16. Luise-NY

    I supported Obama, but I never ever trusted your mouth or a single word of Rep. Barney Frank, who chairs the House Finance Committee.
    SORRY, BARNEY YOU SHOULD GO AWAY WITH TIM GEITHNER.

    March 18, 2009 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  17. Jeanne

    This is a prime example of our government's gross incompetence. Imagine how much worse this will be when the government grows exponentially with all Obama's programs!

    Scary!

    March 18, 2009 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  18. Steve (the real one)

    Barney Frank talking about ownershi??? OWN up to the fact that you welded a MIGHTY HAND in this mess!

    March 18, 2009 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  19. Dittohead

    pathetic man.

    March 18, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  20. MZ

    Frank is most responsible for the Housing Mess. Forcing loans to people who couldn't repay. Now we here finally Chris Dodd hand in hand w/ Obama's Treasury Dept. are MOST RESPONSIBLE for allowing these crooked financial execs. to RUN AWAY with OUR MONEY !!!! Shame on THEM, and SHAME ON US for continuing to allow ourselves to be DRUNK on the Obama and Congressional Democrats JOY JUICE !!!!!!!
    WAKE UP AMERICA, WHEREVER YOU ARE !!!!!!!!!!!

    March 18, 2009 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |

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