Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., has introduced legislation to repeal the massive and widely criticized Dodd-Frank financial reform measure that President Barack Obama had signed into law. Bachmann, who made the move shortly after being sworn in for her third term, assailed the law protecting Wall Street at the expense of taxpayers.
“I’m pleased to offer a full repeal of the job-killing Dodd-Frank financial regulatory bill,” Bachmann said. “Dodd-Frank grossly expanded the federal government beyond its jurisdictional boundaries. It gave Washington bureaucrats the power to interpret and enforce the legislation with little oversight.”
The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which Obama signed into law in July, represented the most extensive overhaul of financial regulations since the Great Depression. The law, which was named for its two sponsors, former Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., and Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., was passed along party lines in response to the financial crisis that began in 2007.
Among other things, the law created new agencies, such as the Financial Stability and Oversight Council, the Office of Financial Research, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, all endowed with sweeping regulatory and enforcement power over financial institutions. The law also gave regulators new powers to pursue fraud and conflict of interest.
The law covers a vast array of financial institutions from small banks and thrifts to the insurance industry and giant Wall Street traders. Edward L. Yingling, president and CEO of the American Bankers Association, said the measure contains a “tsunami of new rules and restrictions for traditional banks that had nothing to do with causing the financial crisis in the first place.”
“Implementation of this legislation will be challenging for regulators,” he said when the measure was signed into law. “The result will be over 5,000 pages of new regulations on traditional banks and years of uncertainty as to what the massive new rules will mean. The impact of these rules will be very real and will be felt not only by banks, but by consumers, businesses and the broader economy.”
Bachman said Dodd-Frank also failed to address the taxpayer-funded liabilities of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
“Real financial regulatory reform must deal with these lenders who were a leading cause of our economic recession,” she said. “True reform must also end the bailout mind-set that was perpetuated by the last Congress. I am proud to work towards repeal of Dodd-Frank because Congress must protect the taxpayers, instead of handing out favors to Wall Street.”
Co-sponsors of the legislation, which the Club for Growth and Americans for Prosperity, endorsed, include Reps. Darrell Issa, R-Calif.; Todd Akin, R-Mo.; Tom McClintock, R-Calif.; and Bill Posey, R-Fla.
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