Quoting Electoral Vote:
House Republicans voted down the first bailout bill because they were afraid it would become just another government boondoggle. But after it was loaded up with more pork than all the pigs in Iowa, they changed their minds. Guess what? It has become just another government boondoggle. Sec. Henry Paulson’s idea was to buy up all the toxic mortgages to get them off the banks’ books. He long since shelved that plan. His next idea was to buy stock in the banks so they would have fresh capital and could start making loans again. However, instead of making loans, some banks are using the money to pay dividends, give executives bonuses, and buy other banks. For example, PNC Financial Services received $7.7 billion in government money and promptly spent $5.6 billion of it to buy National City Corp. Lawmakers are protesting but they should hardly be surprised since they gave Paulson unlimited authority to spend the money any way he wanted to, with hardly any supervision and no restrictions on what the recipients did with the money. In addition, Paulson hired the Bank of New York Mellon to run the program. On the same day Bank of New York Mellon received $3 billion itself, apparently deciding that it could use some cash. Hardly anyone noticed.
Pretty much everyone seemed to think the bailout package was a bad idea, and then it seems like pretty much everyone in Washington ended up voting for it. But have we learned nothing about the need for oversight, especially when handing companies billions of dollars?