Don’t eliminate Dodd-Frank Act

As a concerned member of this community, I signed up to receive Rep. Claudia Tenney’s newsletter. This is the first one I received:

“As a new member of the Financial Services Committee, I’d like to take a moment to introduce the priorities of our committee, while giving you a glimpse into the policies we will enact to improve the lives of all Americans.

“Throughout the past eight years, individuals, small businesses and family farms have felt the pain of a stagnant economy. Furthermore, bad economic policies like Dodd-Frank have made it nearly impossible for Americans to achieve financial independence.

“Instead of protecting our small businesses and consumers, regulatory policies created by the Dodd-Frank Act have only hurt our communities. Fewer choices in financial products coupled with higher costs have stifled our economy, preventing our small businesses from growing and hiring locally.”

Representative Tenney has it all wrong. The Dodd-Frank Act, passed in 2010 in response to the financial crisis of 2008, was enacted to promote the financial stability of the United States by improving accountability and transparency in the financial system, to end “too big to fail,” to protect the American taxpayer by ending bailouts, and to protect consumers from abusive financial services practices. Dodd-Frank brought the most significant changes to financial regulation in the United States since the regulatory reform that followed the Great Depression.

The act changed the existing regulatory structure by increasing oversight of specific institutions regarded as a systemic risk, promoting transparency, and additional changes. The act’s intentions were to provide rigorous standards and supervision to protect the economy and American consumers, investors and businesses; end taxpayer-funded bailouts of financial institutions; provide for an advanced warning system on the stability of the economy; create new rules on executive compensation and corporate governance; and eliminate certain loopholes that led to the 2008 economic recession.

In 2008, we bailed out Citigroup and Goldman Sachs. And by we, I mean the taxpayers. We received pennies on the dollar of the bailout. Citigroup and Goldman Sachs chairs and execs received millions in compensation. How much did you earn in 2008?

Already, there has been a movement to “reduce” taxes on the wealthy, and I use the word “reduce” gingerly, because I do not know if they even pay taxes. When is enough enough?

Dodd-Frank was a good overseer. It was a help to the middle class and to small business by providing regulatory controls to banks and financial institutions. Eliminating Dodd-Frank is a horrible mistake. Our economy has not been stagnant because of the Dodd-Frank Act. President Donald Trump appointed two Goldman Sachs execs to the Cabinet. How much should the middle class accept?

Write, call, email Representative Tenney. Tell her you care. An overseer on our financial institutions is a good thing. Will it take another depression and a billion-dollar bailout to put the right practices in place again?

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