Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Siga-SEIU connection

Michele Malkin, writing for National Review Online, delves deeper into the Siga scandal, addressed here previously.

We were already aware--thanks to the work of LA Times journalist David Willman--that the administration had rigged the game, in order to insure Siga would receive a fat contract to supply the government with a possibly useless and untested Smallpox vaccine. And it appeared that Obama campaign contributor Ronald Perelman was simply getting his "just" rewards. But Malkin has noted a new player: former head of the SEIU, Andy Stern:
After pouring some $60 million of workers’ dues into Democratic coffers, Stern was rewarded by Obama with a cozy spot on the White House deficit panel and dozens of visits to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue — including at least seven with the president, one with Vice President Joe Biden, and meetings with Obama chief of staff Rahm Emanuel, Biden chief of staff Ron Klain, OMB director Peter Orszag, health-czar aide Jennifer Cannistra, and Valerie Jarrett’s former high-powered aide and Chicago fundraiser Tina Tchen. 
In a classic access-buying maneuver, Siga placed Stern on its board of directors in June 2010. Four months later, Siga nabbed an estimated $3 billion contract.
And shortly thereafter, Siga stock went through the roof, as I noted with this handy chart:

I'd bet dollars to donuts that Stern is one of those that made a nice little profit, just before the nosedive.

Regardless, the Siga story--like the Solyndra one--doesn't look like it will go away anytime soon, despite the lack of coverage from the major media outlets. It's obscenely obvious influence-peddling and cronyism. I'd guess that the administration thought no one would bother to look closely at this stuff, since people involved--like Obama's Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, Nicole Lurie, at HHS and the Secretary of Energy, Steven Chu--are so tragically ill-prepared to explain their questionable actions.

At the very least, a major house-cleaning is in order, to given the appearance of concern, if nothing else.

Cheers, all.

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