Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Dodd-Frank Is Five Years Old Today... Will Conservatives Murder It?


Today is the fifth anniversary of Dodd-Frank, a package of legislative reforms that has helped protect American consumers from Wall Street banksters and other financial predators. It needs to be expanded and strengthened, but the full weight and power of the Republican Party has been devoted to gutting it and making it unworkable. In the short video above, Elizabeth Warren has a clear explanation of what's happening.

Wall Street is so angry at Warren and some of her Senate allies-- like Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Jeff Merkely (D-OR)-- that the banksters have publicly threatened to cut off the DSCC and all Senate Democrats from the millions of dollars in annual legalistic bribes called "campaign contributions." Wall Street's top recipient of these bribes, Chuck Schumer, has vowed to his Wall Street paymasters that as the new leader of the Senate Democrats, he will make sure Senate nominations go to conservative, Wall Street-friendly Democrats, not to reformers, populists and progressives. First and foremost on Schumer's list is Florida, a state with the most impotent and least effective state Democratic Party in America. The goal: keeping Alan Grayson out of the Senate and doing everything possible to get the nomination for unaccomplished "ex"-Republican Patrick Murphy.

Murphy has used his time on the House Financial Services Committee to do Wall Street's bidding. Last cycle the financial sector rewarded him with $1,127,650, more than any other Democrat serving in the House other than longtime corrupt Wall Street boosters Joe Crowley ($1,184,858) and Jim Himes ($1,144,988). No other House Democrat scooped up over a million dollars in the cycle, just Republicans. But of course Murphy has consistently voted with the Republicans in committee and was even brazen enough to vote with the GOP against Dodd-Frank on the House floor.

When U.S. Chamber of Commerce CEO Thomas Donohue endorsed Murphy-- one of the rare times they picked a Democrat over a Republican-- he said,
At no other time in our nation's history has it been more critical that Members of Congress provide leadership that protects and advances the interests of the business community. Murphy's record of support on pro-business issues earned this endorsement.
How did he earn it? Well, first and foremost he has voted to deregulate Wall Street, a Republican dream. Murphy was one of only 29 House Democrats to block implementation of the Volcker Rule, which would have required big banks to sell off financial investments known as collateralized loan obligations (CLOs), a kind of super-risky gambling that could lead to another financial collapse (and bailout). In vote after vote, Murphy has sided with the big banks against working famiies, including families cheated by unfair, if not criminal, mortgage rules in Florida.

I had to laugh when Schumer railed at progressive donors that if he had to, he would get Elizabeth Warren to endorse Murphy. There are plenty of worthless Democrats I'm sure he can and will get to do just that, but Warren? That would be one for the books! "Dodd-Frank certainly didn’t solve all of the problems created by Wall Street, including the problem of banks that are too big to fail," said Rep. Grayson, who supported Dodd-Frank, and has pressed for stronger financial regulations. "But the pushback from Big Money and its political cronies has been unrelenting and will only grow stronger ahead of the 2016 elections, as Big Money funnels millions into the election campaigns its tools and toadies... The fight for financial sanity didn’t end with the passage of Dodd-Frank. The big banks that were bailed out by taxpayer money have only gotten bigger in the five years since the bill passed, and they’re spending millions of dollars each week on lobbyists and campaign contributions to force our government to do their bidding. The 2016 elections will be critical to determining who controls our country’s financial future. Will it be us, or will it be them?  Can they do a leveraged buyout of our entire political system? I say no. While some Democrats are addicted to Wall Street dollars, my vote can’t be bought."

He didn't mention his opponent in the Senate race, New Dem Patrick Murphy now name, but the shoe certainly fits.

While the bulk of opposition to reining in Wall Street has come from the Republican side of the aisle, a small number of  turncoat Democrats have joined the effort to weaken Dodd-Frank. In January, for instance, 29 Democrats in the House of Representatives voted to delay the implementation of the Volcker Rule until 2019. Another bill that allowed mortgage companies to charge consumers higher fees was co-sponsored by six Democrats. Around the same time, 30 House Democrats wrote to Labor Secretary Thomas Perez to attack a pending rule that would protect contributors to retirement funds from investment advice from selfish brokers charging high fees.

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At 6:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

They don't have to murder Dodd-Frank. They will ignore it, knowing that Obama's DoJ has as many sharp teeth as a marshmallow in a microwave. They already own the SEC, and have plenty of power to interfere with any and all attempts to bring them to heel. Corporatism is now the ruling force in this nation, and the laws -Like Leona Helmsley's taxes- are only for the little people.


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