When President Obama signed the bill on Wednesday creating a 10-member Pecora-style commission with subpoena power to investigate the financial crisis, he also issued a signing statement limiting the administration’s duty to comply with its requests.
In other words, the president is reserving the right to claim executive privilege if the commission seeks information or documents that the White House considers to be beyond the bounds of public information and/or privileged communications and negotiations within the executive branch.
As head of the New York Fed, Timothy Geithner was smack in the middle of many conflicts of interest surrounding Goldman Sachs, AIG, and the bank bailout. This signing statement could be used to protect him from inquiry.
There is a serious need for more transparency about the financial world, as anyone who has seen Alan Grayson’s questioning of the Fed’s Inspector General earlier this month can attest to (video). Please help Rep. Grayson by endorsing his efforts to get his fellow Democrats in the House to cosponsor the Federal Reserve Transparency Act.
Update: Tyler Durden has more.