Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) has introduced legislation today that would “repeal the Dodd-Frank financial regulation bill that President Obama signed into law on July 21, 2010,” according to a press release from his office.
Current Republican co-sponsors, which include several members of the leadership team:
Eighteen Republicans cosponsored the bill including U.S. Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tennessee), Tom Coburn (R-Oklahoma), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), John Ensign (R-Nevada), Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas), Jim Inhofe (R-Oklahoma), Johnny Isakson (R-Georgia), Mike Johanns (R-Nebraska), Ron Johnson (R-Wisconsin), Jon Kyl (R-Arizona), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky), Rand Paul (R-Kentucky), Jim Risch (R-Idaho), Jeff Sessions (R-Alabama), John Thune (R-South Dakota), and David Vitter (R-Louisiana).
It’s called the Financial Takeover Repeal Act (S. 712).
The steep uphill climb “faced by Republicans in trying to roll back last year’s Dodd-Frank law was made clear on Monday by a memo from the Senate Banking Committee pledging to protect financial reforms,” Reuters reports.
The agenda memo, obtained by Reuters, showed the Senate committee, still under the control of Democrats, will examine much the same issues being targeted by its counterpart panel in the Republican-controlled House — but with different goals.
Oversight of Dodd-Frank by the Senate panel will focus on assuring that "the letter and the spirit of the law are being implemented by the regulatory agencies," the memo said.
The Senate panel will seek to ensure that public comment is being considered; that the new law is being enforced; that legitimate concerns regarding the act are considered; and that "regulators have adequate resources to perform their work and are using the resources efficiently," it said.
The other top items “on the to-do list of the Senate committee, under its Democratic Chairman Tim Johnson, are housing finance reform and oversight of the 2008-2009 federal bailouts, said the memo dated February 2.”
The ranking member “of the Senate Banking Committee told the nation’s top financial officials Thursday that changes in the new financial regulation law are ‘inevitable,’” POLITICO reports.
Republicans have not been shy about their dislike of the sweeping financial overhaul, But Alabama Sen. Richard Shelby’s definitive statements in a congressional hearing exploring the law’s future seemed like a firm warning to a Democratic Party they believe strong-armed the bill and likely will lose seats in this fall’s midterm elections.
“Under the current law, the responsibility rests largely with the regulators to avoid future difficulties,” Shelby said. “Congress, however, can continue to exercise its oversight authority by having hearings such as this one and also, when necessary, visit the law and make changes consistent with our findings and the demands of the electorate.”
“In this particular instance,” he added, “change is not only a good thing, I believe that it is inevitable.”
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, FDIC Chairwoman Sheila Bair, Securities and Exchange Commission Chairwoman Mary Shapiro, Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin and other administration officials, testified before the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday on the implementation of the regulatory reform law crafted in response to the 2008 global financial crisis.
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A Republican majority “in the Senate would ‘revisit’ the Wall Street reform bill passed earlier this year, Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) said Tuesday,” The Hill reports.
Shelby, the ranking member of the Senate Banking Committee who might become chairman under a GOP majority, suggested that Republicans might strip out elements of the bill most favored by President Obama and congressional Democrats if Republicans win control of Congress.
“The bill is so sweeping and such a game-changer in many ways that it’s incumbent upon us to revisit it,” Shelby said at the Reuters Washington Summit.
In particular, Shelby named the “new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as one of the most distasteful parts of the law.”
Shelby said a GOP majority would look to reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored enterprises supporting the mortgage market. Tackling those would be a “very high priority” for a Republican-controlled Banking Committee, Shelby asserted.
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(Originally posted July 15)
Senators have given final passage to the Restoring American Financial Stability Act (H.R. 4173) conference report by a vote of 60-39.
Prior to this vote, members waived a budget point of order against the bill raised by Senator Judd Gregg (R-NH) by a vote of 60-39. Sixty votes were needed to waive the motion.
The bill now goes to President Obama for his signature.
Update (7/21): This legislation has been signed into law by President Obama.
(credit image – daylife/getty)