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Hensarling Resigns From TARP Oversight Panel

The lone member of Congress on the Congressional Oversight Panel of the Troubled Asset Relief Program resigned his post last week citing his disappointment with its work.

Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) has been a vocal critic of the TARP oversight panel since Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) appointed him to the post last year.

“As you are aware, with some notable exceptions, I have been disappointed with the Panel’s work that too often focuses upon making recommendations to Congress in place of critical and badly needed oversight,— Hensarling wrote in a letter to Boehner on Dec. 9.

“Now that the Obama administration has chosen to extend the Troubled Asset Relief Program into next year, I want to devote more of my time and energy … to fighting its continued efforts to misuse the program and thus the taxpayers’ money as a revolving bailout fund,— he said.

Boehner accepted Hensarling’s resignation and thanked him for serving on the panel in a statement last week.

“Jeb is a true champion of fiscal responsibility and a bold and honest voice who has been willing to stand up to the White House and Wall Street on behalf of the American people,— Boehner said. “I appreciate this hard work on behalf of American taxpayers.—

Elizabeth Warren, chairwoman of the TARP oversight panel, also thanked Hensarling for his service.

“During the production of the 15 oversight reports on the Troubled Asset Relief Program that we have worked together on, the panel has benefited from his unique understanding of the financial markets,— she said in a statement. “I am grateful for his service to the American people and wish the best for him and his family in the years to come.—

Boehner appointed Mark McWatters, a former Hensarling aide and Texas-based tax counsel for HBK Capital Management, to replace the Texas lawmaker on the five-member panel.

Congressional Republicans in recent days have been upping their attacks against TARP, arguing the money has been misspent and the program should end.

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