Yesterday, the Senate cleared the conference report to H.R. 4173, the so-called Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, by a vote of 60-39. The House passed it two weeks ago, but its fate in the Senate remained unclear until this week. Democratic Senator Russ Feingold voted no, while Republican Senators Snow, Collins, and Brown voted yes, giving leadership the 60-vote threshold they needed.
According to a study by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the financial reform bill (soon-to-be law) contains the following regulations that will dramatically expand the size and scope of our federal government:
- 70 new federal regulations through the new Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection
- 54 new federal regulations through the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission
- 11 new federal regulations through the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp
- 30 new federal regulations through the Federal Reserve
- 205 new regulations through the Securities and Exchange Commission
We released several opposition vote alerts throughout the financial reform debate, as well as an NTU-led coalition letter signed by 21 state and national groups. Additionally, I drafted a blog post when the Senate passed financial reform the first time (pre-conference report), and that posting explains our position in greater detail. While President Obama is likely to sign the bill into law, remember that you can hold your leaders accountable this November.