Wednesday, October 13, 2010

U.S. Bail-Outs for Foreign Companies?


By Michael Mariotte

American taxpayers bailed out the banks. They bailed out auto manufacturers. But at least they were our banks and automakers. Now, taxpayers are once again being asked to lend a hand. This time it's to subsidize multi-billion-dollar foreign companies with names like Toshiba, Hitachi and Areva. If the going gets rough for them, taxpayers will be forced to dig into their pockets to bail them out, too.

America needs to invest in new forms of energy: to combat climate change and increase security by reducing our dependence on foreign suppliers. But that reality is being used by some on Capitol Hill to justify the expenditure of billions of dollars to construct new nuclear reactors – a high-cost, high-risk gamble.

Various proposals in both the House and Senate call for as much as $54 billion in taxpayer-supplied loan guarantees for new reactors. Another bill would put no ceiling on the amount of guarantees.

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