With over 400 amendments readied for the committee debate on Senator Chris Dodd’s financial reform package, Banking Chairman Dodd decided to ditch the democratic process and vote his own version of the bill out of committee. This moves the real debate to the Senate floor and worsens progressive’s chance of improving the bill.
On Friday, Senators had readied their amendments, which included dozens of Republican amendments that were clearly intended to draw out the debate and delay final action. After tweaking the bill over the weekend, Dodd moved for an up or down vote on his draft in committee. It passed on a strict party line vote of 13-10. After a year of discussion, the committee “debate” and mark up took only 21 minutes.
To: U.S. Senator Chris Dodd
Chairman Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee
Dear Senator Dodd,
As women and as taxpayers, we are writing to you today to tell you that size matters.
Usually we love big. Big boxes of chocolate, big boxes of wine, big — well you know. But when it comes to big banks and big bank bailouts, it’s a whole different story.
As you get ready to take up bank reform in your committee next week, we need to talk.
Send the message to Congress that we need to break up the banks and end "too-big-to-fail." Call your Senator using the toll free number provided by SEIU 866-544-7573. This number will be open and available to consumers until March 31, 2010, or you can send an email at BanksterUSA.org under "Protect American Families."
Here are some highlights regarding the 1,300 page bank reform bill released by U.S. Senator Chris Dodd (D-CN) yesterday.
Headlines blared that Senate Banking Chair Chris Dodd was done with dithering, and ready to move ahead with a financial reform package without Republican support. Financial reform groups should be celebrating this as a positive move that would roll back some of the worst elements of the bill inserted during recent bipartisan negotiations, including the nutty effort to put the Consumer Financial Protection Agency (CFPA) into the Federal Reserve -- an institution about as popular as the IRS. Hold the champagne. Reading between the lines, it seems that negotiations are continuing behind the scenes and ranking Republican Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) says “an agreement is still very possible.” The little spat between Dodd and the Republicans has been beneficial, though, because it flushed out more details about the points of agreement and contention.
Today the Funny or Die crew took the fight for financial reform to a new level, tapping the talents of reality TV star Heidi Montag who delivers the message that "with hidden fees and standard interest rate increases, that $11,000 jaw line can end up costing $50,000 dollars!" Montag is famous for her multiple plastic surgeries featured recently on the cover of People magazin
Watching the devolution of the bank reform bill in the U.S. Senate has been painful. Banking Chairman Chris Dodd’s original proposal unveiled last year had numerous strengths, most significantly the removal of bank supervisory authority from the Federal Reserve. Dodd decided that the Fed had done such a lousy job ignoring the housing bubble and failing to crack down on predatory lending in the mortgage market that it shouldn’t be given a second chance.
But a second chance for this unpopular and failed institution is currently in the works. In an effort to please Republicans and achieve a bipartisan bill, Dodd is not only going to let the Fed keep its bank supervision and rulemaking authority, he wants to give it authority over the proposed Consumer Financial Protection Agency (CFPA).