Wall Street's Financing Bill
by Jerome Armstrong, Wed Jun 30, 2010 at 03:04:14 PM EDT
Russ Feingold tells some inconvenient truths: This bill caves to Wall Street interests, it doesn't meet the test of preventing another financial crisis, and it won't get my vote.
...reports indicate that the administration and conference leaders have gone to significant lengths to avoid making the bill stronger. Rather than discussing with me ways to strengthen the bill, for example, they chose to eliminate a levy that was to be imposed on the largest banks and hedge funds in order to obtain the vote of members who prefer a weaker bill. Nothing could be more revealing of the true position of those who are crafting this legislation. They had a choice between pursuing a weaker bill or a stronger one. Their decision is clear.
To top it off, Scott Brown's now wavering on his vote, saying 'he'll think about it over the July recess'.
There's no reason for progressives to weigh in on behalf of the Obama administration to make Feingold buckle, when they won't even negotiate with him. Geithner will make this bill a Republican bill if that's what it takes to get to the point where Obama can call it a "win" and there's not a reason to help them do it either.
Democrat loyalists can go on about "the perfect being the enemy of the good" and miss the point here. "They had a choice" and chose dealing with Senator Brown to make the bill weaker, and maintain his vote, rather than make the bill stronger and get Feingold's vote-- he wasn't even consulted. They didn't even persue the progressive alternative.
There's another angle here, of anything now needing 60 votes to pass the Senate; with underlying opposition to a bill equating to not voting for cloture either. That's an unfortunate reality that the last decade has brought upon the Senate. Used to be, a Senator like Feingold, or anyone from the opposition, whom would vote against it, would still go ahead with voting for cloture--not of substance to the underlying approval of the bill in question but as a procedural vote. Not anymore: 60 is the new 50. That's gotta change.
One other point, and this can't be underestimated. Feingold is in a tough re-election battle, and he's one of the few Democrats to have done the right thing, and vote against the Bank Bailouts. His coming out against this bill, and being vocal about it, probalby helps his chances of re-election by highlighting his opposition to the "Unholy Alliance Between Washington and Wall Street."
Tags: (all tags)