WASHINGTON""U.S. Representative Tom Udall, D-N.M., today released the following statement:
"America is facing one of the worst economic crises in our history. Treasury Secretary Paulson has put forward the administration's plan to address the crisis, and Congress is working to find a solution that protects Main Street interests, not just those of Wall Street. But as we evaluate the options, including a $700 billion bailout, I am particularly troubled that one voice has been virtually silent during this important discussion: the voice of President Bush.
"Today, I am calling on President Bush to address the American people and explain the perfect storm of policies and market effects that has produced what some describe as the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression. As he has done in other times of national crisis, President Bush has a responsibility to address the American people and explain how we got into this crisis and how he plans to fix it. This is a time that calls for leadership, not for the president to be silent.
"With $700 billion of taxpayer money on the line and the American economy at stake, I am working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to ensure that the federal response to the current crisis is as effective and responsible as possible. We cannot give Secretary Paulson and Wall Street a blank check with no oversight. Recovery by way of taxpayer dollars must be closely monitored by independent overseers, and Wall Street must accept new rules to help ensure that we do not face a similar financial crisis in the future. Additionally, corporate executives must know that they will not get golden parachutes while the American taxpayer is forced to pay the bill.
"This crisis demands accountability. President Bush still has nearly 4 months in office, and he has a responsibility to the American people and Congress to justify his administration's $700 billion taxpayer funded bailout."