Billionaire developer Donald Trump says President Barack Obama is “absolutely right” to place salary caps on executives at companies receiving bailout money from the government.
In an interview with Larry King on CNN, King asked the real estate tycoon: “Is Obama right or wrong to go after these executives with salary caps?”
“I think he's absolutely right,” Trump declared.
“Billions of dollars is being given to banks and others. Once you start using taxpayer money, it's a whole new game. So I absolutely think he's right.”
Obama is imposing a $500,000 pay cap on some senior executives whose firms receive government financial rescue money.
Asked about his opinion of federal bailouts in general, Trump responded: “Let's face it, Larry, we are in a depression. If they didn't do the bailout, you would be in depression number 2 and maybe just as big as depression number 1, so they really had to do something.
“The problem is they're giving millions and billions of dollars to banks and the banks aren't loaning it … They're supposed to be loaning out that money and they're using it for other purposes, so it is a real mess.”
Trump also told King: “There's been a lot of greed. There's been a lot of stupidity. Like I say, today the banks don't have money, they don't loan money. But if you went to a bank two years ago and you wanted a $300 million loan, they'd say 'No, we don't want to do that, but we'll give you $400 million,' so I guess, to a certain extent, that's part of the problem …
“The new president is trying. Bush left him with a mess — a total mess in many different ways. I really think he's doing the best he can, but it is trial and error.”
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