So long as Congress keeps allowing institutions to shop around for the regulator that regulates least -- rather than applying across-the-board rules for each product type regardless of who issues it -- there will be no agency that provides real accountability over the consumer practices of the big banks. The agencies that do have consumer protection authority will continue to chip away at rules in order to attract institutions to regulate and preserve the fees that come with them.
That is why a strong Consumer Financial Protection Agency is crucial. We need an agency that sees consumers, not banks, as its constituents. It also needs enough power to prevent financial institutions from leaving its jurisdiction in search of fairer regulatory pastures.
And, guess who is trying to water down real consumer protections and carry water for the banks?
The amendments proposed by Senate Republicans would fail to accomplish these goals. The details have varied from bill to bill, but the ideas remain the same.
The GOP wants to put the agency under the thumb of existing regulators who have already shown how seriously they take consumer protection. And the Republicans want to dilute the agency’s mission to protect consumers with an obligation not to interfere with bank “safety and soundness,” a phrase that has been manipulated by Wall Street and its allies to exclude meaningful reform.
Fortunately, the Senate has rejected these proposals so far. But the GOP and Wall Street lobbyists will keep trying. Senate Democrats must ensure that good sense prevails.
If the Republicans successfully dilute the power of the consumer financial protection body in this way, we will end up with more of what we have always had: regulators who lack either the appetite or the authority for reining in the risky lending practices that got us into the current financial crisis.
The Republicans are standing with Wall Street and the banksters. Is that where you stand?
A few weeks ago, Mitch McConnell didn't have a firm position on the bailout. So, he took a trip to New York. He met in secret with 25 top banksters. He came out of that meeting with a commitment to two the line of the banksters in exchange for far in excess of 30 pieces of silver. Harry Reid called him out for it:
Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) threw his attack on the GOP into high gear Wednesday afternoon, accusing Republicans of "making love to Wall Street."
Reid has been slamming Republicans for obstructing progress on financial regulatory reform legislation for as long as its been debated, but Wednesday's move was the most blatant shot at the GOP's motives.
"The Republicans are having difficulty determining how they're going to continue making love to Wall Street," Reid said.
And, Main Street is getting screwed:
Jim Manley, Reid's spokesman, took the description one step further.
"What can I say? It's true," Manley said. "Republicans are making love to Wall Street while main street is getting screwed.”
The American people need more of this tough talk from the Senate Majority Leader. We're sick and tired of our elected officials bowing before the tycoons of Wall Street. We want leadership that stands up for us. More, please.
The banksters are paying off the Republicans for shilling for their interests:
Republicans may lose the fight over Wall Street regulations, but the fight has helped their campaign accounts.
For the first time since 2004, the biggest Wall Street firms are now giving most of their campaign donations to Republicans.
A Wall Street Journal analysis of 12 large financial services companies, including J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. shows that they have collectively made $1.4 million in political donations, with 52% going to Republicans so far this year.
But, that's not enough for the Washington Republicans. Republican insiders want more.
Meanwhile, the Wall Street firms have also begun writing large checks to the Republican Party, while stiffing the Democratic Party. Goldman, KPMG, and FMR Corp. (the owner of Fidelity Investments) each gave $15,000 to the Republican Party in March.
The change of allegiance comes as Congress closes in on legislation that would overhaul financial services regulations. Democrats back an aggressive bill that has been so far blocked in the Senate by Republicans.
Republicans have grown frustrated by the fact that Wall Street companies and employees continue to write big campaign checks to Democrats even as the GOP stands up for the industry on Capitol Hill.
Republican insiders admit that they're shilling for Wall Street! And, they expect to be paid handsomely for it. The American people need to know that the Republican Party is doing Wall Street's bidding in Washington.
Warren Buffet warned us about the financial crisis in 2002. We did nothing. Then, the collapse happened. We did nothing. If we continue to do nothing, another crash is sure to come. Watch and learn:
Pass it on.