Kucinich on Proposed Pfizer-Wyeth Merger
WASHINGTON - Congressman Kucinich (D-OH) today made the following statement about the proposed merger between the pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Wyeth. In the statement, Kucinich points out that, although indirectly, government money meant to strengthen the economy is being used to help facilitate a merger that will result in the lose of several thousand jobs. Kucinich adds that the stimulus package is a necessary first step, but the government must do more to ensure that Americans can find jobs.
"Fifty five thousand Americans lost their jobs yesterday. Nine thousand five hundred were lost at the drug company Pfizer. Pfizer did not have $4 billion to keep 9,500 employees, but they had $68 billion to buy another drug company, Wyeth, with the help of four banks: Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup and Bank of America, which have collectively received $238 billion in bailout moneys and loan guarantees.
"Using bailout funds for mergers and acquisitions, which result in the loss of jobs, is nothing new. The Treasury Department gave PNC $5.2 billion in bailout funds, which PNC promptly used to take over National City Bank in Cleveland, my home town, putting at least 7800 jobs at risk.
"Today, as Congress takes up an economic stimulus package, we are in a race to try to create jobs and stimulate the economy while corporations are getting bailout funds and cutting jobs. The economy is unraveling; we clearly cannot rely on the private sector to create jobs. When the private sector cuts jobs, and we are approaching unemployment levels of 10% in some states, then it is the duty of government to create jobs. The stimulus package is the first step, but only a first step."