Treasury on $700 Billion Bailout Amount: “It’s Not Based On Any Particular Data”

Do What??
OK, let’s see the full quote:
“It’s not based on any particular data point,” a Treasury spokeswoman told Forbes.com Tuesday. “We just wanted to choose a really large number.”
“”We just wanted to choose a really large number.” Are these jokers for real???
We (the tax payers) are supposed to add $700 billion to a massive national debt in order to bail out a bunch of poorly run companies, but we find out that the Feds aren’t even sure how much money they need.
Are we going to keep allowing this nonsense to continue???

Lawmakers on Capitol Hill seem determined to work together to pass a bill that will get the credit markets churning again. But will they do it this week, as some had hoped just a few days ago? Don’t count on it.

“Do I expect to pass something this week?” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., mused to reporters Tuesday. “I expect to pass something as soon as we can. I think it’s important that we get it done right, not get it done fast.”

Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, says his office has gotten “close to zero” calls in support of the $700 billion plan proposed by the administration. He doubts it’ll happen immediately either. “I don’t think it has to be a week” he says. “If we do it right, then we need to take as long as it needs.”

The more Congress examines the Bush administration’s bailout plan, the hazier its outcome gets. At a Senate Banking Committee hearing Tuesday, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle complained of being rushed to pass legislation or else risk financial meltdown.

“The secretary and the administration need to know that what they have sent to us is not acceptable,” says Committee Chairman Chris Dodd, D-Conn. The committee’s top Republican, Alabama Sen. Richard Shelby, says he’s concerned about its cost and whether it will even work.

In fact, some of the most basic details, including the $700 billion figure Treasury would use to buy up bad debt, are fuzzy.

“It’s not based on any particular data point,” a Treasury spokeswoman told Forbes.com Tuesday. “We just wanted to choose a really large number.”

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