Vice President Biden Visited Ener1, Recipient of $118.5 Million DOE Stimulus Grant, Exactly One Year Ago as Part of White House's Post SOTU Promotion Tour
WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Cliff Stearns (R-FL), Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, is sounding alarm bells in response to today’s news that battery maker Ener1 has filed for bankruptcy. Ener1 was previously awarded a $118.5 million stimulus grant from the Department of Energy. Ener1 joins other DOE endorsed companies Solyndra and Beacon Power in bankruptcy. Vice President Biden visited Ener1 one year ago, January 26, 2011, the day after the President pledged in his State of the Union address to put one million advanced technology vehicles on the road by 2015 with the help of taxpayer funding. On several occasions, Biden called the company “Enron one” during his visit, invoking a seemingly unintentional but ultimately prescient reference to the collapse of the energy giant Enron. The company was also ranked number 67 in the White House Report: 100 Recovery Projects that are Changing America.
Chairman Stearns made the following statement:
“President Obama was prophetic this week during his State of the Union address when he casually remarked, “˜Some technologies don’t pan out; some companies fail.’ Unfortunately, you can now add Ener1 to the growing list of failed companies that went belly up after hundreds of millions of dollars in administration backing. Sadly, the Department of Energy’s jobs record seems to grow worse by the day – first Solyndra, then Beacon Power, and now Ener1 – and it is American taxpayers who are paying the price. One bankruptcy may be a fluke, two could be coincidence, but three is a trend. Our investigation continues, and we are working to ensure taxpayers are never again stuck paying hundreds of millions of dollars because of the administration’s risky bets.”
View Vice President Biden’s “Enron One” comments HERE
Watch Vice President Biden’s full remarks, HERE.
Watch an Ener1 promotional video regarding Biden’s visit HERE.