As news of an Obamacare replacement passing the House garners all the media attention, legislators in committee quietly took a big step to fulfill yet another item on Trump’s agenda. If passed by the full House, the move could be another huge boost for the economy.In April, President Trump called for a repeal of Dodd-Frank regulations that have been disastrous for the economy and community banks. Less than a month later, the House Financial Services Committee is already making good on that promise.
From The Hill:The House Financial Services Committee approved a bill Thursday to repeal and roll back significant pieces of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.
The panel voted to send Chairman Jeb Hensarling’s (R-Texas) Financial CHOICE Act to the House floor, 34-26, along party lines. The bill would accomplish much of a long-term GOP goal: to revoke the expansive financial regulations passed under President Obama after the 2008 financial crisis and long protected by Democrats.
Not surprisingly, the bill was moved forward with no support from Democrats:All of the panel’s Democrats voted against the bill, following more 24 hours of contentious debate dragged across three days. Republicans blocked several amendments offered by Democrats that would restore the key parts of Dodd-Frank stripped by the CHOICE Act.
The measure would also severely restrict the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, an agency responsible for adding burdensome regulations to the banking industry with almost no oversight:
The CHOICE Act also places major restraints on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), an agency created by Dodd-Frank that the GOP has long called unaccountable, abusive and redundant.The bill renames the CFPB the Consumer Law Enforcement Agency and reduces its power to enforce pre-existing consumer protection laws. Its sole director would be removable at will by the president, and its budget would be controlled by Congress through the traditional appropriations process.
The Democratic Party’s resistance to the bill is especially ironic, considering they claim to be the party interested in breaking up big banks. Far from solving “too big to fail,” studies continue to show that Dodd-Frank has made the problem worse. Since taking effect, Dodd-Frank regulations have caused smaller community banks to decline by 14 percent, while bigger banks continue to buy up the competition.
If Democrats were really interested in stopping the proliferation of huge banks, they would get behind this legislation. Instead, they are only interested in opposing anything on Trump’s agenda.Luckily, much needed Dodd-Frank reform will soon hit the House floor anyway.
[Note: This post was authored by Michael Lee. Follow him on Twitter @UAMichaelLee]