Whenever Donald Trump makes a drastic policy decision, always be sure to look just to the left of the burning remnants of whatever he destroyed to find the larger scandal from which he is distracting.
Today, Trump announced plans to leave the Iran nuclear peace treaty, a decision only popular amongst the most seasoned #MAGA-heads and bloodthirsty neocons.
While the nation was preoccupied with the renewed prospect of nuclear conflict, Paul Ryan confirmed that the U.S. House of Representatives plans to unravel the banking rules the Obama administration implemented after the global financial crisis of 2008.
According to a report in Reuters, Ryan said “we will be moving the Dodd-Frank bill,” without specifying a timeline. The bill will be voted on “soon,” he said.
Dodd-Frank is the short name for the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, signed into law in 2010 by then-president Barack Obama. One of the bill’s fiercest advocates at the time, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), has continued to fight to preserve the bill on behalf of the American taxpayer since Obama vacated the Oval Office.
In spite of Warren’s efforts, the Senate voted 67-32 in March to endorse a bipartisan bill – with the help of several Democrats – that would ease oversight on small and mid-sized banks. This is the first adjustment to Dodd-Frank since it’s implementation almost ten years ago.
The decision to repeal Dodd-Frank is nothing more than another ploy by the Trump administration to erase Obama’s legacy from American history books. Studies have found Dodd–Frank has improved financial stability and consumer protection, although there has been debate about its effects on the economy.
The plight of the American populace is never a major concern for Republicans in spite of their rhetoric, but at least Senate Republicans aim simply to modify the existing bill. Their counterparts in the House don’t think the bipartisan Senate bill is strong enough. They want to reduce compliance costs for banks and make it easier for small companies to raise capital.
Of course, easing those restrictions allows the big contenders like Wells Fargo to call the shots, opening the doors to the predatory lending schemes which caused the market crash in 2008, forcing many small businesses to shut down and causing millions to lose their homes. The big players came out clean, and even got a bailout for their troubles!
Republicans are ready to take us back to those dark times, as House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) told reporters “there will be an announcement soon” on when the bill is scheduled for a vote.
Let’s hope the likes of Sen. Warren can keep this bill intact. Otherwise, we’re on a crash-course to another financial meltdown.