That sound you heard is probably Sen. Warren’s head exploding.
The House pushed through a bill today that would ease regulations put on Wall Street after the 2008 Recession. With a 271-154 vote, the legislation would alter sections within the Dodd-Frank law that were put in place to prevent another financial crisis from happening. Within the House, the entire Republican caucus, along with 29 Democrats, joined in moving the measure through which now goes into the Senate.
The legislation specifically targets the “the Volcker Rule”, a provision that places a limit on the number of risky investments a bank can make. For years Republicans have wanted to upend this section of the Dodd-Frank law saying that it only stifles the competitiveness and growth of the financial industry. Democrats like Sen. Elizabeth Warren – who’s known for championing financial regulatory reforms in the Senate – disagree however. They believe the Volcker Rule limits the amount of risky investments that financial institutions make, putting in stop gaps so they don’t trigger another recession similar to the one in 2008.
It’s surprising how fast the GOP was able to push this legislation through the House. It went through only the second week that the new Congress has been in session! While the legislation did pass through the usual road blocks of revisions in the House, even with the Republicans having a Senate majority, it’s hard to see it passing through the Senate as quickly. Also with Democrats like Sen. Warren on the Banking Committee – the committee that regulates banking and financial institutions – this legislation will definitely be altered if it has any chance of leaving the Senate.
The Obama administration has already said it would veto the bill in its current form, but the Republicans have played this well. By passing current legislation in the House, they have essentially framed the bargaining discussion with the Democrats. In short, the GOP might be able to change the Volcker Rule more than they were originally expecting.
While I’m not the biggest fan of turning back solid financial reforms, I have to admit GOP…
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