The scandal deepens

The Department of Energy asked Solyndra to delay its layoffs until after the midterm elections:

The Obama administration, which gave the solar company Solyndra a half-billion-dollar loan to help create jobs, asked the company to delay announcing it would lay off workers until after the hotly contested November 2010 midterm elections that imperiled Democratic control of Congress, newly released e-mails show.

The announcement could have been politically damaging because President Obama and others in the administration had held up Solyndra as a poster child of its clean-energy initiative. . .

A Solyndra investment adviser wrote in an Oct. 30, 2010, e-mail — without explaining the reason — that Energy Department officials were pushing “very hard” to delay making the layoffs public until the day after the elections. The announcement ultimately was made on Nov. 3, 2010 — immediately following the Nov. 2 vote.

Worse, it appears that the administration gave Solyndra $40 million in hush money:

“DOE continues to be cooperative and have indicated that they will fund the November draw on our loan (app. $40 million) but have not committed to December yet,” an unnamed Argonaut official wrote, according to the memo released by the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Republican staff. “They did push very hard for us to hold our announcement of the consolidation to employees and vendors to Nov. 3rd – oddly they didn’t give a reason for that date.”

We don’t know what the administration actually said, but it’s clear from the memo that Solyndra connected the $40 million with the delay until after the election.

(Via Hot Air.) (Previous post.)

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