Project on Government Oversight (POGO), an independent government watchdog, wrote a letter to Representative Peterson outlining opposition to the loopholes last week.
Nick Baumann has an excellent piece on the derivatives loophole we talked about here, which started a bit mid-discussion for people not too familiar. Check out Nick’s story, which has this doozy of a quote: “POGO tried reaching out to several congressional offices last week about removing this loophole, but everyone was insecure about tinkering with the legislation because they don’t really understand derivatives.”
In case you want to see how the sausage gets made, talking with consumer groups the question isn’t whether this is a bad loophole for the derivatives market (it is), it’s whether it is the worst one, and which of the several loopholes is worth trying to spend time fighting before the vote happens. Welcome to Washington DC.
From an article about how ugly it’s getting (my bold):
Rep. Melissa Bean, D-Ill., succeeded in getting her consumer protection limits inserted into Frank’s version of the bill. Her provision would make it harder for states to enforce their own consumer protection rules on national banks. Under the compromise, states would not be able to pre-empt federal consumer laws if the state law “materially” interferes with the business of banks.
“It’s solid progress in the effort to provide consistency and uniformity to the American consumer,” said Scott Talbott, chief lobbyist for the Financial Services Roundtable, an industry group.
Heh. Yes, consistency and uniformity for American consumers who have checking accounts, mortgages and other financial services in 50 different states throughout the year. As we said yesterday, that language is designed specifically for the benefit of large national banks at the expense of democratic autonomy and federalist information aggregation and response. A terrible development. If you are interested in these things, here’s some ideas of Melissa Bean’s campaign donors, and how they relate to Wall Street and Obama’s inner circle.
Also, for today:
Democrats hoped to fend off an amendment Friday that would eliminate the creation of an independent Consumer Finance Protection Agency. The agency is a central element of the Democrats’ legislation and the Obama administration’s proposed regulatory changes.
The amendment was offered by Rep. Walt Minnick, a conservative Democrat from Idaho, and seven other centrist Democrats. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which has been running national television ads against the creation of a consumer agency, said it would base its support for lawmakers in next year’s elections, in part, on how they voted on the amendment.
If the Minnick amendment passes, and derivative reform stays leaky, watch for a filibuster from the left. Hopefully the Dodd bill doesn’t get defanged by industry, though that move is coming….