WASHINGTON — A popular conservative talking point in the aftermath of the Silicon Valley Bank failure is that the financial institution failed because it was too “woke”.

Republicans such as Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and House Oversight Chairman James Comer of Kentucky said the bank was too focused on diversity policies and its consideration of environmental and social factors in investments, which is known as ESG.

But on Thursday, Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., turned this talking point around, saying that Silicon Valley Bank was actually «too awake to fail.»

The Missouri Republican told NBC News the bank received help from the federal government because it invested in climate change solutions backed by powerful people.

«‘Too Awake To Fail’ says that they’re really politically connected and that they’re pursuing an agenda, which I’m sure they presented to the people here, who see that: ‘This is important, we’ve reversed all this, you can’t let this happen! this sinks! My opinion is that they should be treated like everyone else,» Hawley said.

Claims linking the Silicon Valley Bank situation to the «awakening,» Lacking a factual basis, they channel a common refrain that has struck a chord with Republican bases by blaming «wake-up» attitudes for a wide range of national problems.

Hawley tweeted on Monday that SVB failed in part because it was «funding woke crap» like clean energy activities.

But Hawley backtracked on that Thursday when asked what his evidence was to say that «woke» or weather-based investments were the cause of SVB’s financial failures.

«Oh, I don’t know about that,» he said. «It seems they made bad decisions.»

federal regulators backed up Silicon Valley Bank depositors through the FDIC’s existing deposit insurance fund, and President Joe Biden and his allies argue that the amount of money is covered by bank fees, not a taxpayer bailout.

Hawley, among others, said it’s a rescue.

“I’m sure they did this on purpose, I’m sure they sold us to the retailers: ‘We’re pursuing an important climate change agenda’ and whatever, and I think that doesn’t mean they deserve a bailout. ,» he said. «You can’t tell me that if a bank, a community bank in Missouri had failed, the regulators would have rushed to bail them out.»

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