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The $108 billion IMF bailout moves forward

By Michelle Malkin  •  June 4, 2009 06:32 PM

I gave you a heads-up last month about the coming $108 billion IMF bailout.

Sens. DeMint and Coburn have been watchdogging the foreign giveaway.

What’s the latest? The Democrats are trying to tack the foreign bailout to the emergency war supplemental bill!

A glimmer of encouraging news: It’s not just fiscal hawks who are balking at this ploy (via CongressNow):

Liberal House Democrats are pressing for the inclusion of lending conditions for the International Monetary Fund to be added to the final version of the war supplemental bill that could come up for a vote in the House and Senate this week.

Democratic aides say the Senate’s decision last month to include $5 billion for the IMF in the $91.3 billion measure has emerged as a sticking point in the House, where both liberals and Republicans have criticized the funds. GOP lawmakers largely supported the House’s $96.7 billion bill, which funds the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but have criticized the inclusion of the IMF funds in the bill that later emerged from the Senate.

The $5 billion — added to the Senate bill only after the Congressional Budget Office agreed to score the funds on a credit basis, rather than at full cost — makes good on a pledge by President Barack Obama earlier this year to contribute $108 billion to the IMF.

But in a letter circulating for signatures, more than 30 House Democrats call the last-minute addition of the IMF funds — which the administration requested only after the House passed its version — a “blank check” for the IMF.

Via Boehner’s office, troops are getting shortchanged amid the bailout wrangling:

Funding for troops protecting our nation in Iraq and Afghanistan has officially been placed on hold while Democratic leaders try to secure enough Democratic votes to attach to the legislation a $108 billion global bailout for the International Monetary Fund (IMF) – a bailout that could line the pockets of terrorist regimes around the world, according to Democratic Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA). In a letter to his colleagues earlier today, Rep. Sherman warned, “We face the very real possibility that some of the world’s worst regimes will benefit from the additional resources provided to the IMF, World Bank and other international institutions, unless the U.S. works vigilantly to deny this assistance.”

An initial troop funding bill passed the House last month by an overwhelming bipartisan majority – 368-60. And the final version of that legislation could pass the House right now by an equally strong margin, giving our men and women in uniform all the tools they need for success in Iraq and Afghanistan. However, Democratic leaders seem willing to let that bipartisan coalition unravel as they barrel ahead with their global bailout scheme.

Time to burn up the congressional phone lines: 202-224-3121.

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Categories: Politics