The Washington Times - September 27, 2011, 01:05PM



Director of the United States Office of Management and Budget Jack Lew refused to answer questions about Solyndra on Tuesday when he was asked by the Washington Times’ affiliated radio show, America’s Morning News, if he let Energy Secretary Steven Chu know that there were concerns from OMB about loaning more tax payer money to the now defunct solar panel maker company Solyndra.

The Associated Press published e-mails almost two weeks ago showing Obama administration officials privately worrying that a Solyndra bankruptcy during the president’s campaign season would look bad: 

White House officials discussed the political ramifications of a possible default by a troubled solar energy company that received more than $500 million in federal loans, newly released emails show.

Emails released Thursday night show that Obama administration privately worried about the effect of a default by Solyndra Inc. on the president’s re-election campaign.

“The optics of a Solyndra default will be bad,” an official from the Office of Management and Budget wrote in a Jan. 31 email to a senior OMB official. “The timing will likely coincide with the 2012 campaign season heating up.

“The email, released by the House Energy and Commerce Committee as part of its investigation into the Solyndra loan, showed that Obama administration officials were concerned about Solyndra’s financial health even as they publicly declared the solar panel maker in good shape.

Solyndra, which received $528 million in federal loans under the stimulus law, declared bankruptcy late last month and laid off 1,100 workers.