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Republicans introduce bill to prevent Euro bailout

After a week of preemptive attacks on a possible IMF bailout of Greece, Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) introduces the European Bailout Protection Act, aimed at preventing taxpayer dollars from going to a rescue plan.

"This legislation would require that countries like Greece cut spending and put their own fiscal house in order," says Pence, backed up by other members of the House GOP, "instead of looking to the United States for a bailout. We face record unemployment and a debt crisis of our own, and American taxpayers should not be forced to bear the risk for nations that have avoided making tough choices."

The full release is below the fold, with the detail that the bill "does not permanently prohibit the IMF from lending" to the troubled counties. Nevertheless, Ezra Klein is not a fan of this proposal.

(Thanks to my colleague Ben Pershing.)

U.S. Congressman Mike Pence, Chairman of the House Republican Conference, joined Conference Vice-Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee Rep. Jerry Lewis, Rep. Jeb Hensarling, and Rep. Kay Granger in introducing legislation today to stop U.S. tax dollars from being used by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for bailouts for European countries. Rep. Pence released the following statement today as the European Bailout Protection Act was introduced:

“The American people are fed up with taxpayer-funded bailouts and deserve to know we are bailing out Greece and possibly other European countries. If the Obama Administration has its way, the U.S. will contribute to a nearly trillion dollar bailout of European countries with economic crises that are a direct result of wasteful government spending.

“This legislation would require that countries like Greece cut spending and put their own fiscal house in order, instead of looking to the United States for a bailout. We face record unemployment and a debt crisis of our own, and American taxpayers should not be forced to bear the risk for nations that have avoided making tough choices.

Background

The European Bailout Protection Act would:

1) Prohibit any funds that have yet to be drawn by the IMF from being used to provide financing to any EU countries until all EU nations are in compliance with the debt to GDP ratio requirement in their own collective growth pact.

2) Require the Treasury Secretary to oppose any IMF loans to EU nations until all EU countries are in compliance with their debt to GDP ratio requirement.

The bill does not permanently prohibit the IMF from lending to these nations; it simply prohibits the U.S. from participating in the proposed European bailout.

By David Weigel  |  May 13, 2010; 2:45 PM ET
Categories:  Congress  
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