Ken Lewis should have stepped down as CEO of Bank of America immediately after his disastrous decision to pay $50 billion for a sinking Merrill Lynch.
He should have stepped down–or at least recused himself–when Hank Paulson threatened to fire him if he didn’t go forward with the Merrill Lynch deal.
He should have stepped down when Andrew Cuomo made it clear that Bank of America didn’t come clean with shareholders about Merrill’s implosion before the deal closed–an implosion so violent that Lewis was considering invoking the “material adverse change” clause to scuttle the deal.
And he should step down now that the SEC is accusing his firm of making materially false and misleading statements in connection with the Merrill deal–statements that, again, Lewis is ultimately responsible for.
We’re not asking that Ken Lewis be burnt at the stake, stripped of his wealth, or sent to jail for the rest of his life. We’re just asking him to step up and take responsibility for a shareholder disaster that he is responsible for.
If Lewis won’t take responsibility for this, who will?
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