Banks Turn Bailouts into Campaign Cash

Sick of hearing about the AIG bonuses? Don’t worry, Newsweek has dished up a fresh helping of outrage: Members of Congress are raking in the campaign cash from banks and firms that have taken in billions through the Troubled Asset Relief Program. A few bailed-out banks, including Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase, have cut back on campaign donations, Newsweek reports, but “others are quietly doling out cash to select members of Congress, particularly those who serve on committees that oversee TARP.” Among the recent donations: Bank of America gave $24,500 to Rep. Steny Hoyer, and Citigroup dished out $2,500 to Rep. Eric Cantor. While Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Financial Services chairman Barney Frank “both said recently they won’t take donations from TARP recipients…House Democratic fundraisers have quietly passed the word that the party’s campaign committee will resume accepting them,” the magazine reports.