OTR Interviews

The Stimulus Flop Hall of Shame

Which companies received millions in taxpayer dollars and went belly-up?


This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," September 16, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: And if you thought the Solyndra scandal was bad, it is. But here is worse news. Solyndra is only the tip of the iceberg. It is not the only company to go belly-up after receiving a big piece of our economic stimulus package. Chief political correspondent for The Washington Examiner Byron York joins us. Byron, it's not -- Solyndra's not the only one?

BYRON YORK, WASHINGTON EXAMINER: It is not the only one. You know, the green jobs initiative, the clean energy initiative is a very big part of the Obama administration coming in. Stimulus money has gone to a lot of other companies. There have been some companies that have actually gone bankrupt. There was a company called Evergreen Solar that made solar panels and they found out that they could be made a lot cheaper in China. So they're going to start doing something like that over there.

And there's something else, which is just astonishing! The stimulus had about $38 billion dollars for a particular loan guarantee program for clean energy. They've spent about $19 million -- $19 billion of that. The Washington Post did a story on that this week. And of that $19 billion, they've created 3,545 jobs. You do the math and it's just insane.

VAN SUSTEREN: How much is it a job about...


YORK: ... $5.4 million...


YORK: ... in loan guarantees per job.

VAN SUSTEREN: You know, that's just nuts! I mean, like, you know -- you know, like, maybe we ought to get someone who, you know, understands business. He should have stopped talking to economists who's been sitting in classrooms. But that is appalling!

YORK: This was very important to the administration because it seemed to solve two big problems. It seemed to be a way to create jobs and...

VAN SUSTEREN: But it didn't!

YORK: ... attack the economic downturn and also a way to deal with cleaning up the environment. For Democrats...

VAN SUSTEREN: Yes, but I'm...


YORK: ... big winner for them.

VAN SUSTEREN: But I'm not opposed to cleaning up the environment! I mean, I want to clean up the environment! But if you'd gone to First Solar, Inc., which, apparently, we've done some work with...

YORK: Right.

VAN SUSTEREN: ... at least they were successful. Just because you want to clean up the environment doesn't mean you take other people's money and invest in some company that's doomed for failure! At least you should go to this one and expand it and be successful! I mean, that's just -- I mean -- I mean, frankly, it's idiotic to do anything else but go with the success!

YORK: Absolutely. And they face two big problems. One is the money that's just been thrown away, like Solyndra's money. And other is the money that's not getting much bang for the buck at all. And obviously, one of the big criticisms of the stimulus overall is that it hasn't created as many jobs as expected for the amount of money that was spent. That's particularly true in the clean energy sector.

VAN SUSTEREN: Well, if look (INAUDIBLE) read the article in The Wall Street Journal, is that the money that we gave them actually created -- contributed to Solyndra's downfall, so on top of it...


VAN SUSTEREN: ... you have 1,100 people who lost jobs. They would have been better off if they didn't have our money and they were creeping along! But anyway, I mean, it's just -- it's -- it is astounding. I don't know who's making these so-called business decisions, But it's other people's money. It's taxpayers' money. Apparently, they don't care.

YORK: There could be more Solyndras in the future.

VAN SUSTEREN: I don't doubt it! Byron, thank you.

YORK: Thank you.