Group spends $6 million linking Obama to Solyndra in ad
January 16th, 2012
02:21 PM ET
10 years ago

Group spends $6 million linking Obama to Solyndra in ad

(CNN) - A conservative group announced Monday they were spending millions to spotlight President Barack Obama's involvement in the failed green energy firm Solyndra, which received loan guarantees from the federal government before it declared bankruptcy.

Americans for Prosperity said they spent $6 million to run the minute-long spot in the battleground states of Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Wisconsin, Virginia and Iowa. The ad began airing Monday.

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The conservative group touted the ad as the "first major ad buy of 2012 focused on the Obama Administration's failed policies."

"This ad is important because it puts a spotlight on how cronyism and blind ideology came together in the halls of the White House," Tim Phillips, President of Americans for Prosperity, said in a statement.

Solyndra failed after receiving $535 million in federal loan guarantees in 2009. Prior to the bankruptcy, President Barack Obama visited the company to tout it as a model for green industry.

The spot accuses Obama of helping secure the loan guarantees for Solyndra for political reasons.

"We all know about Solyndra," the narrator says. "The White House emails. The FBI raids. Solyndra investors raised campaign money for Obama. The government gives Solyndra half a billion in taxpayer money. Politics as usual."

The ad closes with the narrator telling viewers, "Tell President Obama American workers aren't pawns in your political games."

Americans for Prosperity supports many tea party movement causes, and has pushed for reducing government regulation in the oil and gas industries,

The group was co-founded by industrialists Charles and David Koch, who are major supporters of conservative and libertarian causes.

In November, AFP ran a similar ad attacking Obama for the Solyndra affair. That buy was for $2.4 million, and ran in the battleground states of Florida, Michigan, New Mexico and Virginia.

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Filed under: 2012 • Energy • President Obama
soundoff (78 Responses)
  1. FLIndpendent

    @ Robert – "Nice work, Mittens! I look forward to Obama spending 60 seconds to respond with: "But, mittens, some companies succeed, and some companies fail.. isn't that what YOU said??"

    BINGO! You hit the nail on the head. At least President Obama was trying to create jobs and invest in the new energy we need to move this country into the 21st Century. How much $$ did that illegal war cost???

    January 16, 2012 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  2. The Real Tom Paine

    TYpicalman, you nailed it. This is no different, except for the fact that the President did not make a fortune off of it. Don't worry, I'm sure someone here will spring to Bain's defense yet again, because Lord knows you don't want to speak ill of the GOP's annointed one.

    January 16, 2012 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  3. Thomas

    @Truth and Nothing But the Truth
    GI Joe – Doesn't even come close to the "investment" in Iraq.
    You mean the investment a lot of Democrats voted FOR including Hillary Clinton???
    Yes, I though you did!

    Who"s big idea was it to go into Iraq over nonexistent WMDs ?

    It was president GW BUSH and fellow Neocons . Bush owns it always and forever pal !

    You cant put a spin on history . Yet the GOP will try.

    January 16, 2012 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  4. Steve1959

    This case is nothing like Bain Capital. Bain Capital is an investment company. That means they put their own money on the line, not the taxpayers. Most businesses did very well because an investment company knows how to invest. A government has no business investing in companies, because it's not their money to invest.

    January 16, 2012 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  5. Dixie Independent voter

    If the Republicans would spend much less time trying to legislate our private lives (abortion, birth control, etc.) they might want to turn their attentions to the immediate problems of this great country.

    January 16, 2012 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  6. Al-NY,NY

    like the Koch's have any credibility....

    January 16, 2012 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  7. Debra From Georgia

    This crap started under Bush, like the 750,000 jobs loss per month and a recession next to the great depression. Obama came in to stablized it. IHe tried to make lemonade out of a bad lemon. None of you Obama Bashers can blame him for anything. However, if you want to blame him for anything, blame him for the 21 months of job growth in the private sector, latest being the 200, 000 jobs created in the month of December.

    January 16, 2012 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  8. willie floyd

    Just the fact that the Kochs' dad was one of the original founders of the John Birch Society is enough reason for me to ignore any and everything they say.


    January 16, 2012 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  9. VA VERY Ex Republican

    Mr. President, as a conservative independent with very conservative moral views who happens to support you endlesly, I am asking you to kindly find a way not to run in 2012. I am so serious and it is not a joke. This country does not deserve you. they deseve an ignorant GOP who will send the country down the drain, eleminate middle class, makes inflation go through the roof, send unempolyment numbers to record high. you are trying to lead a nation that 38% of it like to stay dumb and find it difficult to think on their own therefore they follow the GOP to think for them. a nation that can be bought for $2000 in a shameful tax refund they got one year. a refund that they could get every year by allowing you to increase taxes on the richest 1% and lower taxes on middle class. seriously Mr. President, why would you want to lead a nation that fights against its own best interest and just follow the voices of the GOP leaders whom themselves are slaves to the richest 1%. how can you free a nation when that nation is a slave by choice and not by force. how can you educate a nation when that nation choses darkness by choice and not by force. how can you grow the economy and rise the middle class to where it should be and needs to be when middle class itself says no to health insurance and lower taxes. see the problem Mr. President is that Middle Class deserve what they get. They are the majority and they are the ones who coted for the current congress of No. they are the ones who chosen to be doomed so let them. trust me Mr. President they do not deserve you and not the other way. you deserve to lead a smart nation and this nation does not deserve you.


    A truly Ex Republican who turned Independent after seeing the light.

    January 16, 2012 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  10. Dreamer96

    There was a lot of capital put into that Solyndra plant...

    A real capitalist would see this as a test of the U.S. system against the Chinese government backed silicon companies, and our own oil and natural gas companies...

    T Boone Pickens and old oil man wants billions from the government and has a interesting plan, and if approved will make a lot of money with our tax dollars...

    Our oil companies buy a land or off shore oil lease and then own the oil they find...on our land or within our water it's our land and our water rights regions....We could pay a company to find that oil, refine it, and we would own the oil.....

    I don't know why we don't get back in the game with Solyndra and make it work...some call this propping up a failed business design/plan.....I just say we are working out the problems looking for the right solution...just like NASA did when we staked a goal to go to the moon...we made mistakes..and learned from them...

    We could make pure hydrogen from our wind and solar it for later use...pipe it, mix with the CO2 from our coal and natural gas power plants and make methane gas, natural gas is 90% methane gas....and we can grow oil make our own oil.. or we can listen to the big oil companies and wage wars and someday run out...

    January 16, 2012 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  11. the Situation

    Why does this ad have Obama with a part in his hairline like Louis Farrahkan when he doesn't? These Tea Baggers can't keep their racist thought and idealogy out.

    January 16, 2012 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  12. Debbie

    Koch Brothers $$ = Freedom of Speech. That's who is behind the ads.

    January 16, 2012 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  13. Larry L


    Everything to dumb bos is to not wake up and smell the roses. They think because he is one of them he can't do anything wrong. But the fact is he has flung this nation into tremendous debt it is very likey never to overcome. BUT THEN THAT WAS YOURS, OBAMA AND SOROS' PLAN WASN'T IT?
    Your English teacher should hang her head in shame.

    January 16, 2012 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  14. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    If it were an independant group that had run the ad, thrn I'd more inclinded to take it seriously. The Koch brothers don't seem to look at the whole picture and understand that we need more sources of energy. We also need to compete with other countries on the green energy sector. They give their companies a subsidies and so should we.

    January 16, 2012 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  15. Drew

    There is no imperical proof that President Obama was bribed it was simply a matter of the Chinese and the Germans flooding the market with cheap solar panels and forcing Solyndra into banckruptcy. My God people where were you when Haliburton walked away with billions in Iraq. That was a case of real theft but nothing came of that.

    January 16, 2012 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  16. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Bush was incompetent, so it is useless to blame him for anything. The right wingnuts who supported his stupidity are always blaming Obama for everything that is bad; but to give Bush a pass on the debt, the wars, the tax cuts, TARP, the near depression, and the attack on American workers is the height of hypocrisy.

    January 16, 2012 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  17. DaveinSC

    I guess Americans for Prosperity think the money that went to the former Blackwater was a better investment. The government has a long history of investing and promoting tech. development. Computers, medical, wireless networks all had major government funds invested. I guess their counting on most Americans not knowing these facts.

    January 16, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  18. demogoat

    Public funding for elections is the only answer. Corporations can still be people and people won't have to put up with their manipulation.

    January 16, 2012 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  19. Libby Spencer

    You might have taken a lesson from Jake Tapper and mentioned the ad distorts the quotes and misleads on the chronology. In fact, it could be said they're pretty much lying in that ad. That kind of context matters.

    January 16, 2012 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  20. Truth and Nothing But the Truth

    Larry L - Regarding Bush's interest in Solyndra – do you suppose Bush being a lap-dog for the oil industry might influence his interest in the renewable energy industry? Look up the "Haliburton Loophole" to see how in-bed that administration was with big oil. Solyndra was in fact a crappy investment –
    Well if this isn't a fine example of libtard double-speak! First you accuse Bush of denying the loan because he was a "lap-dog" for big oil THEN say solyndra WAS a "crappy investment"!! It's simply amazing how the libtards can't simply accept and admit the FACT that the Bush Administration was RIGHT and the Obama administrtion was DEAD WRONG in many ways regard Solyndra.

    And NONE of you will acknowledge the breaking of law and one of Obama's big campaign fund raisers involvement in this fiasco. This whole mess SCREAMS corruption and kickback all over it. But incompetent Eric Holder is too busy trying to release the Taliban from Gitmo.

    January 16, 2012 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  21. Katz

    As of today there are at least 5 more just like Solyndra! The tax payers are stuck for billions because of this clown Obozo! As the US sinks lower, the black are happier! Go figure!

    January 16, 2012 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  22. George

    What a load of baloony! All engaged in investments know verry well that some ventures succeed and some don't. The difference here is that Romney actively and deliberately calculated the failure of companies with the sole interest of benifiting from the unfortunate failed ventures by sucking out and manipulating pension funds of the workers.

    January 16, 2012 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  23. Katz

    This clown asked for the debit limit to raise. Really. That's like you owing your bank 500K and you walk in and ask them to up your credit limit. Bank: Do you have another income? You: No Bank: Do you have another job or another income from somewhere else? You: No I just want my limit raised, and Oh by the way, put my kids names on these loans. Bank: So you make the same amount of money, no added income and you want me to make sure your kids pay this debt....Yes...How stupid is Obozo?

    January 16, 2012 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  24. The Real Tom Paine

    The ironic thing is that the government developed T1 lines for the military over 50 years ago, and look where that investment landed us. Government seed money is vital to getting many industries started, and to take one failure as an example of corruption when no bid contract flew out the door without a peep from teh Right is the height of hypocrisy,

    January 16, 2012 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  25. Me

    If this country is willing to let people who start wars based on lies, torture people and illegally spy on the American people walk away free, they are NOT going to care about solar panel company that went under. He has a long way to go before he rings the "corruption bell"

    January 16, 2012 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
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