Fox host Neil Cavuto falsely claimed the Biden administration “bailed out” the Silicon Valley Bank and that it got preference because it was a “Democratic-friendly bank.”
Cavuto was discussing the situation with Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC). Clyburn said he knows the banking business, having served on boards of two banks that are now part of Bank of America. Clyburn said about SVB, “I do believe things have stabilized thanks to the quick action of the Biden administration to step in to protect not just the banks but to protect the depositors." He also emphasized, “This administration isn’t bailing out anybody.”
“Yeah, but, but, but they are bailing out people right, Congressman?” Cavuto “asked.” “They are bailing out people with FDIC backing limitless.” He said if that happens with more banks, “that could get very, very expensive.”
“It could,” Clyburn agreed. But he reiterated that SVB did not get a bailout. “A bailout is when Congress gets together, as we did back in 2008, appropriate billions of dollars and bail the banks out,” he said. The SVB process “was put in place with FDIC” to make the depositors whole.
Cavuto moved on to the woke bank theme. “Some of these are multimillion-dollar accounts and it’s raised an issue that this would not have been done had this not been a Democratic-friendly bank or institution,” Cavuto accused.
Clyburn laughed and said, “Here we go.”
“Would you have felt the same way, Congressman, if this were an obscure or small regional bank, let’s say in Wyoming?”
“We’ve got small, regional banks right here in South Carolina,” Clyburn shot back. “I don’t have to go out to Wyoming.”
“So politics had nothing to do with this or the people or the power brokers in your party had nothing to do with it?” Cavuto pressed.
“Absolutely not,” Clyburn said. “Those small banks down here in rural South Carolina, 90% of them are Republicans.”
Cavuto persisted. “I’m talking about Silicon Valley. That’s a venture capital institution whose members, 90% plus, give to Democrats. A cynic would look at that and say all right, this is a party favor.”
“Let’s look at how they got here,” Clyburn responded. He said the bank lobbied “almost viciously” to be “relieved” from the Dodd-Frank regulations enacted by Democrats. “Dodd-Frank, [named after] two Democrats, put in place stress tests and other things to protect depositors and to keep banks from meeting this fate that this bank just met. They lobbied to remove themselves from Dodd-Frank.”
FACT CHECK: Clyburn is correct. The Hill notes that the bank “lobbied hard” for its exemptions.
This was a complement to the right-wing blaming “wokeness” for the failure of SVB.
You can watch the variation on the "woke bank" theme below, from the March 15, 2023 Your World.
I’m wondering if this constant harping on the term “woke” might not backfire. RW politicians are using it as a way to foster fear of something nebulous. It is fear of the unknown that causes kids to wake up terrified of a shadow in the corner, behind the closet or something under the bed. Most adults grow out of that phase as they acquire knowledge (and the courage to take a good look at that shadow). A recent poll found that Americans tend to have a positive definition for the word “woke”: essentially being well-informed, fact-oriented, and in favour of a society that gives the more vulnerable a helping hand. It’s encouraging to realise that people (the respondents, at least) are not buying into the RW efforts to redefine the term.