Solyndra

As this report from Grist notes, the long-running House investigation into the alleged Solyndra scandal has turned up no evidence of wrongdoing.

If you're not familiar with the story, Solyndra is a solar energy technology that company unfortunately then went bankrupt when solar panels unexpectedly became cheaper. Solyndra had obtained over $500 million in federal loan guarantees (about 1.7% of the total funds in the program), so this was obviously not great news. When Congress created the program to start with, however, failures and losses had been anticipated, and reserves were written into the bill. The losses have in fact turned out to be a lot less than planned for.

Republicans have charged that Solyndra was tied to one of Obama's political fundraisers, but the evidence seems to be that the loan guarantees were awarded without political considerations. Of course, for all I know there was some influence brought to bear; it's common enough in Washington. But as Grist notes despite the drumbeat on Fox News and in other media, there doesn't yet seem to be any actual substance, and the political influence may be mainly in the investigation itself.

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