A smart Washington Post article looks at the political field and points out a paradox hiding in plain sight: Republicans who attack Democrats for supporting those 2008 and 2009 bailouts are usually raking in serious dough from companies that owe their current existence to things like TARP.
The 23 companies that received more than $1 billion in federal funds spent more than a million in September, three times the amount from the month before. (And that doesn't include secret, unlimited donations to groups like the Chamber of Commerce.) GM, for example, held back from spending until recently, and last month their political action committee gave $5,000 to Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who voted against the bailout. And then there's cases like this one:
The bailouts have become campaign fodder for Republicans to use against their Democratic rivals. In a television commercial, former Republican senator Dan Coats pillories his opponent in the Indiana Senate race, Rep. Brad Ellsworth (D), for supporting "the Obama-Reid-Pelosi agenda," including "the disastrous bank bailout."
Coats has received more than $30,000 for his Senate campaign from companies, including J.P. Morgan Chase and GM, that took government money. No companies on the bailout list have donated to Ellsworth.
Some people — and corporations are people, dammit! — have a strange way of saying thank-you.