May 21, 2018
Progressive lawmakers and advocacy groups are sounding alarm on Monday ahead of the U.S. House's vote on a financial deregulatory bill dubbed the "Bank Lobbyist Act."
Declaring her opposition, Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) tweeted, "We need to #ProtectConsumers, not big banks."
The legislation is S. 2155, officially titled the "Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act." It already passed the Senate in March with the help of 16 Democrats and Sen. Angus King (I-Maine), and praise from big banks. The House is expected to vote on it Tuesday.
Summing up the dangers of the legislation, Public Citizen tweeted:
\u201cThe #BankLobbyistAct would:\n\n-Allow banks to engage in the kind of risky behavior that caused the 2008 financial crash\n\n-Make taxpayer-funded bailouts more likely\n\n-Exempt 25 of the nation\u2019s largest banks from needed oversight\n\nDon\u2019t let the House pass it: https://t.co/UaCFqIK9MZ\u201d— Public Citizen (@Public Citizen) 1526850120
The advocacy group also joined dozens of organizations including the National Consumer Law Center and the NAACP on Friday in sending a letter (pdf) to representatives urging them to "not roll back consumer protections under the Dodd-Frank Act that have helped and continue to help millions of people across the country." That letter came less than a month after scores of other groups called on representatives to oppose the bill, noting that it also would enable racially discriminatory lending practices by weakening reporting requirements under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA).
Recognizing such threats, members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus have been taking to social media to announce their opposition to the bill they say sets the stage for another financial crisis.
Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), for example, tweeted that the bill would "roll back some of the protections against Wall Street greed that we put in place after the financial crash. I will do everything I can to see this #BankLobbyistAct defeated."
\u201cTomorrow the U.S. House is expected to vote on S. 2155, a bill to roll back some of the protections against Wall Street greed that we put in place after the financial crash. I will do everything I can to see this #BankLobbyistAct defeated.\u201d— Keith Ellison (@Keith Ellison) 1526928171
Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) also assured constituents of her opposition, stating: "Our last financial crisis was triggered by Wall Street fraud, and Congress must not put taxpayers at risk of bailing out megabanks yet again, nor allow banks to hide evidence of racial discrimination."
\u201cI\u2019m voting NO on S. 1255, the #BankLobbyistAct. Our last financial crisis was triggered by Wall Street fraud, and Congress must not put taxpayers at risk of bailing out megabanks yet again, nor allow banks to hide evidence of racial discrimination. https://t.co/YvNX4DmtaG\u201d— Rep. Pramila Jayapal (@Rep. Pramila Jayapal) 1526589067
With the House voting on an unchanged version of the Senate bill, passage in the lower chamber means there will be no extra step before it heads to President Donald Trump, who's indicated (pdf) his support. With the hourglass then running out before the bill could become law, Indivisible's Chad Bold urged constituents to take to the phones to pressure representatives to vote no.
\u201cThat means this House vote next week is last stop for this bill before it heads to Trump's desk. Let's stop a bill that lets banks get away with racial discrimination and increases chance of taxpayer-funded bank bailouts (per CBO). Call your MoC now: https://t.co/zF1RuG72hW 3/3\u201d— Chad Bolt (@Chad Bolt) 1526408776
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