McConnell: Dem Reg Reform ‘Permanent Taxpayer Bailout’

By Matt Loffman

Apr 13, 2010 4:03pm

ABC's Z. Byron Wolf reports: Here are the three phrases Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell used at various points during a ten minute press conference today to describe Senate Democrats' plan to overhaul the nation's financial regulation system: 1. It is "a permanent taxpayer bailout of Wall Street banks."
2. It is "an endless taxpayer bailout of Wall Street banks."
3. It is "a perpetual taxpayer bailout of Wall Street banks." In other words, he said, “it perpetuates the one thing the American people have said they don't want to happen again, which is to have their tax money used to prop up the a large failed institution.” McConnell accused Democrats and the White House of freezing out Republicans in recent talks and said its becoming clear that Democrats want to “jam through a totally partisan proposal.” Republicans, who he said had been holding out the possibility of a last-minute bipartisan compromise, are hardening their opposition to Democrats proposals. Every Republican opposed the bill in the Banking Committee earlier this year – declining even to offer amendments – arguing at the time that they saw better opportunities to amend it on the Senate floor. But, said McConnell today, “All signs we get from the White House is they're not interested in talking, they're not interested in making a deal with us.  They want to jam through a totally partisan bill.” “And if they do that, and it looks like the Dodd bill, it will guarantee perpetual taxpayer bailout of Wall Street banks,” he said. McConnell encouraged the White House and Senate Democrats to come back to the table with Banking Committee Ranking Republican Richard Shelby, although Shelby said at the same press conference that at that very moment his staff was meeting with Dodd’s. “We can get a good bill, if they will meet us halfway.  And they haven't yet.  I hope they will.  We continue to be open,” said Shelby today. Shelby was a Republican who opposed the $700 billion TARP financial system rescue in the Fall of 2008 – the original Wall Street Bailout. McConnell supported TARP and helped President Bush find the votes to pass it through the Senate. “Well, there were an overwhelming majority of members of the Senate on both parties that thought that was an emergency. That is not to say that we think it ever ought to be done again.  And the goal here is to prevent in the future revisiting a situation where tax dollars have to be used to rescue large failed institutions,” said McConnell. McConnell on SCOTUS – we'll have to wait and see who the president nominates, and we'll go from there.

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