Skip to main content

Common Dreams. Journalism funded by people, not corporations.

There has never been—and never will be—an advertisement on our site except for this one: without readers like you supporting our work, we wouldn't exist.

No corporate influence. No pay-wall. Independent news and opinion 365 days a year that is freely available to all and funded by those who support our mission: To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good.

Our mission is clear. Our model is simple. If you can, please support our Fall Campaign today.

Support Our Work -- No corporate influence. No pay-wall. Independent news funded by those who support our mission: To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. Please support our Fall Campaign today.

Already Hillary Clinton's campaign has pocketed about $300,000 from employees at the nation’s six largest banks. (Photo: Marc Nozell/cc/flickr)

Clinton Challenged to Break Up—and Break Up With—Wall Street Banks

Comments from progressive Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, Clinton's chief rival, highlight former Secretary of State's ties to financial elite

Lauren McCauley

Faced with the possibility of yet another Wall Street crony taking over the Oval Office next year, progressive lawmakers are directly challenging Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton to break up—and break up with—the big banks.

Speaking at an annual meeting for progressive organizers and advocacy groups on Friday, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) called on presidential hopefuls to support recently introduced legislation that would stem the ever-turning revolving door between government and the financial industry.

"We have a presidential election coming up. I think anyone running for that job—anyone who wants the power to make every key economic appointment and nomination across the federal government—should say loud and clear that they agree: we don’t run this country for Wall Street and mega corporations. We run it for people," Warren said, according to her prepared remarks, during the keynote address.

"So let’s turn that into something specific," Warren told the thousands convened at the Netroots Nation annual convention, held this year in Phoenix, Arizona from July 16-19.

The new bill, introduced by Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) this week, "won’t fix everything, but it will throw some heavy sand in the gears of the revolving door—and it’s a bill any presidential candidate should be able to cheer for," Warren said.

As Nation columnist George Zornick notes, Warren's address "can fairly be read as a direct challenge to Clinton," who is known for her long-standing ties to Wall Street.

Indeed, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that in her first few weeks as a presidential contender, Clinton's campaign "collected about $300,000 from employees at the nation’s six largest banks, with about $88,000 coming from Morgan Stanley executives alone, and about $62,000 from workers at J.P. Morgan Chase & Co."

Speaking at a campaign event in Iowa on Friday, Clinton's primary challenger for the Democratic ticket, populist Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), advised reporters to "ask Hillary Clinton about her views on whether she thinks we should break up these large financial institutions. I do." He added, "You will have to ask her views on whether we should re-establish Glass-Steagall."

The New York Times reports:

Asked whether Mrs. Clinton would seek to break up the country’s largest banks or reinstate Glass-Steagall, an aide to Mrs. Clinton said she would speak in more detail about both issues in the coming weeks. (Alan Blinder, an economist who is advising Mrs. Clinton, said this week that she would not attempt to revive Glass-Steagall.)

Further, the Times continues, "Sanders boasted that he had not received financial contributions from Goldman Sachs, which he said sought 'undue influence' in American politics." Of the $50,000 in donations the Clinton team has thus far received from employees of the Wall Street giant, Sanders said, "That's her decision."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

Breaking: FDA Panel Recommends Pfizer Covid-19 Vaccine for Kids 5 to 11

With just one abstention, the advisory panel voted 17-0 to approve the vaccine for younger children which scientific review has deemed both safe and effective against the deadly virus.

Common Dreams staff ·



Sunrise Movement Corrects Manchin: US 'Has Done More Than Any Other' to Cause—Not Solve—Climate Crisis

"Sen. Manchin is clearly drafting his climate plan with false information. At worst he's telling us lies given to him by his fossil fuel donors. At best, he's misinformed."

Brett Wilkins ·


Worst Polluters Spending Over Two Times More on Border Militarization Than on Climate Action

"Maybe, instead of spending a fortune to arm the borders, we should help the world transition to clean energy so people don't have to leave their homes."

Kenny Stancil ·


Democrats Urged to Seize 'Historic Chance' on Billionaire Wealth Tax

Following Sen. Kyrsten Sinema's objection to raising the corporate tax rate, the party has turned to Sen. Ron Wyden's proposal.

Julia Conley ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo