Senate Democrats

Democrats Hold Wall Street Accountable

Senate Democrats today moved one step closer today towards passing legislation that will rein in the excesses of Wall Street and strengthen consumer financial protections. It’s unfortunate that only a handful of Republicans joined their Democratic colleagues in voting ‘yes’ on today’s procedural vote. After witnessing more than 8 million Americans lose their jobs as a result of the financial crisis, it’s unclear why Republicans still want to protect Wall Street CEOs and big bank lobbyists from accountability.

Despite a lack of support from their Republican colleagues, Democrats have fought for passage of this bill to:

  • End taxpayer bailouts
  • Bring transparency and accountability to shadowy markets
  • Create an independent agency to protect consumers

This legislation has been hailed by a whole host of economic experts.

Henry Paulson — former U.S. Treasury Secretary under President George W. Bush — praised the bill, telling The New York Times, “We would have loved to have something like this for Lehman Brothers. There’s no doubt about it.”

Elizabeth Warren — Chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel — praised the consumer financial protection agency this bill creates, saying, “It has a lot of capacity to reshape the consumer credit market in a way that just works…a market where consumers can see the products and say, ‘Oh, that’s how much it costs that’s how much risk is associated with it,’ and make comparisons.”

Ezra Klein, economics reporter at the Washington Post, wrote this week, “If there’s any problem [this bill] solves, it’s the regulatory confusion and weakness we saw amidst the last financial crisis.”

Felix Salmon, an economics reporter for Reuters, wrote in late June, “In general the bill makes as robust an attempt as could reasonably be expected to both monitor and ring-fence the kind of things which can cause systemic meltdowns.”

Highlighting the positive impact the bill will have on consumers, The New York Times’ Your Money reporter, Ron Lieber, wrote, “Mortgage shoppers stand to gain under the new rules and millions of people will now have access to a free credit score.”

To read a summary of the Wall Street reform conference report, click here.

To read the Wall Street reform conference report in full, click here.