The GOP has officially taken over the U. s. House of Representatives and U. S. Senate after pasting the Democrats to the political across the country in mid-terms elections this past November.
So what was one of the first bills the GOP tried to push through the House – a bill full of post New Year’s gifts for Wall Street of course. The bill was called the Promoting Job Creation and Reducing Small Business Burdens Act but was nothing of the sort – it actually was composed of 11 different bills that a number of right wing Republicans that had already been introduced into the House, and rolled them into one bill aimed at gutting the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. How would it do this by undermining the Volcker Rule, investor protections, and derivatives.
Fortunately for our side, Pelosi fought hard and beat back attempts to pass the bill:
House Democrats on Wednesday knocked down a GOP bill that would have delayed a key Wall Street reform known as the Volcker Rule, stunning Republican leaders who had expected it to pass with ease.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) pushed a critical bloc of Democrats who had previously supported similar measures into voting against the bill. Soon afterward, disgruntled Republicans accused those vote-switchers of bowing to pressure from financial reform advocates.
The bill would have allowed banks to hang onto billions of dollars in risky collateralized loan obligations for two additional years by amending the Volcker Rule, which is part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law. The rule bans banks from speculating in securities markets with taxpayer funds, requiring them to dump their CLO holdings. A Volcker Rule delay would be a major boon to the nation’s largest banks. Between 94 and 96 percent of the domestic CLO market is held by banks with at least $50 billion in assets, according to federal regulators, who value the market at between $84 billion and $105 billion.
Wednesday’s bill actually won a majority vote of 276 to 146, but that wasn’t enough because of a GOP tactic that backfired. Expecting several dozen Democratic votes in favor of the bill, Republican leaders brought it to the House floor under special rules that prevented it from being amended, but required a two-thirds majority for passage — which it did not meet.
The big banks and Wall Street firms clearly had their lobbyists out in force but Pelosi was having none of it crushed them like a bug:
The fact that a bill to postpone a major part of the Volcker Rule was being considered at all showed the confidence of bank lobbyists just weeks after being hit with a barrage of negative press coverage over the derivatives measure.
So where did Congressman Don Beyer fall in this debate the second day into his two year term? Well, count him amongst the corporate Democrats within the Democratic House caucus. Beyer was one of 35 Democrats in the House who voted to gut Dodd-Frank.
And don’t let Beyer off the hook – he is going to peddle this bill as a bill to help small businesses – you know how they play the game. But this bill had nothing to do with small businesses and everything with helping the big banks and Wall Street AGAIN to drive the economy into another recession, just as we are recovering from the last fiasco.
Shame on you Don Beyer.