Mar 15, 2018
"Remember these names the next time Wall Street tanks our economy and taxpayers are left to bail out the Big Banks."
That was the declaration by the progressive advocacy group Public Citizen late Wednesday after 17 members of the Democratic caucus in the U.S. Senate joined with Republicans to pass a sweeping deregulatory banking bill, derisively referred to as the "Bank Lobbyist Act" by critics.
In addition to Sen. Angus King (I-Maine), 16 Democrats joined a unified Republican caucus in approving the so-called "Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act": Michael Bennet (Col.), Tom Carper (Del.), Chris Coons (Del.), Joe Donnelly (Ind.), Maggie Hassan (N.H.), Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), Doug Jones (Ala.), Tim Kaine (Va.), Joe Manchin (W.Va.), Claire McCaskill (Mo.), Bill Nelson (Fla.), Gary Peters (Mich.), Jeanne Shaheen (N.H.), Debbie Stabenow (Mich.), Jon Tester (Mont.), Mark Warner (Va.).
The explanation for the lawmakers' support for the bill, said Public Citizen, isn't hard to explain or understand:
\u201cThe #BankLobbyistAct that just passed was co-sponsored by more than a dozen Senate Democrats \u2014 an ugly reflection of Wall Street\u2019s political clout in both parties, purchased through billions in political spending over many decades.\u201d— Public Citizen (@Public Citizen) 1521067551
"Washington insiders are telling a story about centrist Democrats up for reelection aiming to demonstrate their commitment to bipartisanship," said the Robert Weissman, the group's president, in a statement. "But that fairy tale is upside down: among the public, there is in fact overwhelming bipartisan opposition to Wall Street deregulation."
And Public Citizen was hardly alone in expressing its frustration with the 16 Democrats and Sen. Angus King, Independent of Maine, who caucuses with them:
\u201cShame on every "yes" vote, including the 17 from Democrats.\n\nImagine believing that what we need right now is for huge banks to have fewer rules. https://t.co/cjFbDQDTm8\u201d— Michael Linden (@Michael Linden) 1521068644
\u201cThis hour the U.S. Senate, joined by over a dozen Senate Dems, will vote to deregulate Wall Street. Watch CNBC exactly 10 years ago this moment as Bear Stearns collapsed and began the financial crisis #10YearsAgo #BankLobbyistAct #BailoutCaucus\u201d— People for Bernie (@People for Bernie) 1521061203
\u201cWorth reiterating the banking bill could have gotten full support of genuinely red state Dems -- Donnelly, Heitkamp, Tester, Manchin, Jones -- and still failed by 5-6 votes since it needs 60\n\nIt's blue/purple state Ds (in Va., Delaware, Michigan, Colorado) who put it over the top\u201d— Jeff Stein (@Jeff Stein) 1521071341
\u201cThe Senate thanks us by voting in a bill to de-regulate 25 of the 38 largest banks in the country on the 10 year anniversary of the Bear Stearns collapse, which helped start the 2008 crisis. 13 of the Senators who votes yes are DEMOCRATS! \n\n#BankLobbyistAct #BailoutCaucus\u201d— Justice Democrats (@Justice Democrats) 1521071487
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