POLITICS

House investigating bankrupt solar company backed by Obama bundler and DOE loan

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Politics,Beltway Confidential,Joel Gehrke

House investigators have asked executives and former executives at Abound Solar, a now-bankrupt solar company that received a $400 million loan guarantee from the Department of Energy, to testify before Congress about the DOE subsidy.

The House Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs, Stimulus Oversight and Government Spending invited the Abound Solar CEO and former CEO to testify, along with some Energy Department officials after the company announced it is filing for bankruptcy, despite drawing about $70 million of the $400 million available from the DOE loan guarantee.

The bankruptcy announcement comes after Abound laid off 280 employees in March. The DOE loan guarantee was projected to create 1200 permanent jobs.

As in the case of Solyndra, which declared bankruptcy last year, a bundler for President Obama’s campaign has a financial stake in the solar company.

Bohemian Companies, founded by Democratic mega-donor Pat Stryker, invested in Abound Solar in 2008. A year after the investment, but a year before Abound received a loan guarantee, Stryker apparently visited the White House.  “The White House did not confirm that the visitor was the Pat Stryker in question and did not provide details about the meeting,” the Sunlight Foundation reported.

Stryker gave $50,000 for Obama’s inauguration and bundled another 87,000 for the event. She also donated $35,800 to the Obama Victory Fund, Sunlight observed.

FEC reports show Stryker donated $145,000 in 2010 to America’s Families First Action Fund (AFFAF) and $75,000 to “Women Vote” operation organized by the pro-choice group, Emily’s List. The Washington Post reported in October 2010 that AFFAF had spent almost $6 million during that cycle on behalf of Democratic candidates only. “Women Vote” is a similarly partisan effort by Emily’s List to “turn out women voters for our pro-choice Democratic women candidates and every Democrat on the ticket.”

 

 

 

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