For Immediate Release
July 26, 2011
Frank Responds to Reports of Campaign Contributions
to Reward Opponents of Financial Reform
WASHINGTON – Congressman Barney Frank today released the following statement in response to press reports that Republican leaders, who have strongly opposed Wall Street reform, are receiving greatly increased campaign contributions from Wall Street firms. An article published by Bloomberg News states that campaign contributions to House Speaker John Boehner have increased six-fold over the same period in the last election cycle, and that “three of the biggest sources of Boehner’s campaign cash are employees of three Wall Street investment houses.”
“If anyone still doubts that some on Wall Street yearn for the good old days when the financial services industry could engage in irresponsible and deeply damaging practices without regulation, here is the proof. Those that oppose the financial reform law and were unable to block it last year are now providing substantial backing to those who are attempting to undermine it.”
“They are funding Republican opponents of financial reform who are proposing to block efforts to prevent price-inflating speculation on food and energy until late 2012 and to gut the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, effectively putting bank regulators, which have failed miserably in the past, back in charge of consumer protection. Last week, they proposed to repeal a provision in the financial reform law which holds rating agencies legally liable when they make misstatements in sales prospectuses. And they want to restrict the amount that is needed by the SEC to protect investors from fraud and abuse.”
“In short, they want to allow the financial services industry to resume its old ways, and some in the industry want to reward them for doing it. With all the money flooding in we will have a tough battle ahead, but I will not be deterred and I’m ready to fight back.”
Wall Street Helps Boehner Boost Fundraising as House SpeakerBLOOMBERG NEWS
July 25, 2011
Since January, U.S. House Speaker John Boehner has raised $6.6 million for his campaign committee, six times more than the Ohio Republican received during the same period two years ago when he was the chamber’s minority leader.
Three of the five biggest sources of Boehner’s campaign cash this year are employees of three Wall Street investment houses, a shift from the 2010 election cycle when such contributors weren’t ranked among his top 10 donors.
Employees at the New York hedge fund Paulson & Co. contributed $61,050 to Boehner’s campaign account, more than any other company. New York-based Moore Capital Management LLP employees gave $53,000, while those at Cantor Fitzgerald LP donated $45,000.
No one from any of those companies donated to Boehner for his 2010 re-election campaign, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a Washington-based research group that tracks political money.
Republican consultant Eddie Mahe said he had “no doubt” Wall Street has been betting that the House Republican majority would lead the effort to “repeal or at least modify” the revised financial regulations enacted last year.
Armel Leslie, a spokesman for Paulson & Co., Patrick Clifford, a spokesman for Moore Capital, and Bob Hubbell, a spokesman for New York-based Cantor Fitzgerald, all declined to comment on campaign donations.
Boehner and House Republicans last year opposed passage of the revamped rules for the financial industry, which was blamed for triggering the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression.
President Barack Obama signed those new rules into law a year ago this month. Since taking control of the House, the Republican majority has moved to undo parts of the legislation, although the Democratic Senate has prevented major changes.
Boehner received most of the donations from Paulson & Co., Moore Capital and Cantor Fitzgerald in June, the same month the House voted along party lines to cut the budget of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, which is writing most of the new derivatives rules, and the House Appropriations Committee voted to limit funding for the new consumer protection bureau.
House Republicans have also opposed Democratic efforts to tax carried interest, the share of profits paid to asset managers, as ordinary income rather than at the lower capital gains rate.
Some Democrats, including Representative Sander Levin of Michigan, are promoting that tax change as part of legislation to reduce the deficit and raise the U.S. debt limit.
Levin’s brother and fellow Michigan Democrat, Senator Carl Levin, endorsed the proposal in a floor speech last month.
“One example of the kind of tax breaks and tax loopholes that we Democrats seek to change is the unconscionable tax break given to hedge fund managers,” he said. “Recognizing carried interest for what it is would increase tax fairness for working Americans who pay their fair share of taxes. They have the right to expect that the wealthy do the same.”
Officials of both Paulson & Co. and Moore Capital sit on the board of directors of the hedge funds’ Washington-based trade group, the Managed Funds Association, which spent $2 million in the first six months of this year lobbying Congress on financial regulations and other issue, according to its lobbying disclosure report.
Cory Fritz, a spokesman for Boehner’s PAC, didn’t respond to requests for comment.
In 2009-10, the combined giving from the securities industry made it Boehner’s biggest business-sector donor -- with $353,050 in contributions, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a Washington-based research group.
Employees in the securities and investment industry, the biggest corporate source of campaign cash for federal candidates, have given 52 percent of their money to Republicans this year, according to the center. Hedge fund employees have given 56 percent to the Republicans.
“There’s no better fundraising strategy than having power, and Boehner obviously has a lot of it,’ said Bill Allison, editorial director for the Sunlight Foundation, a Washington- based watchdog group.
Larry Here: The entire system is corrupt. Money talks, the rest of us walks. If we continue to allow Wall Street to "buy" our government, we will never see our Democratic Republic as it once was and as it was meant to be.
Wall Street flip flops depending which party seems to benefit them the most. The Republicans have without question been their biggest benefactor beginning with the "W" administration or shall I say the Cheney Administration with Bush 1 in the shadows. Closed eyes by the SEC, encouraging the banks and Wall Street to defraud, the midnight Sunday bailout approvals where the money was transferred to the banks long before anyone even woke up Monday morning. Middle of the night money transfers. Wow!!! Then TARP, quickly giving out billions more in an attempt to cover up the fraud and the complicity of our government.
I must agree with one thing that Obama wants to do. Remove the tax loopholes we give these bankers who have been and still are ripping us off. If that is a tax increase then so be it. But also, remove these loopholes from the oil companies, automotive industry, airlines, etc. The argument that they create jobs with the loophole money does not wash. No new jobs just higher record profits for them all.
Banksters and gangsters all and we keep feeding them more and more. The system is not broken as many say, it is grossly abused. And "we" through our so called "elected" officials allow this abuse.
Speak out America. This is your country. It does not belong to Wall Street nor to Oil Street or even to Auto Street. It belongs to Main Street, the street you and I live on.
WAKE UP AMERICA!
GoldmanSachs666 Message Board
According to the Collins English Dictionary 10th Edition fraud can be defined as: "deceit, trickery, sharp practice, or breach of confidence, perpetrated for profit or to gain some unfair or dishonest advantage". In the broadest sense, a fraud is an intentional deception made for personal gain or to damage another individual; the related adjective is fraudulent. The specific legal definition varies by legal jurisdiction. Fraud is a crime, and also a civil law violation. Defrauding people or entities of money or valuables is a common purpose of fraud, but there have also been fraudulent "discoveries", e.g. in science, to gain prestige rather than immediate monetary gain
*As defined in Wikipedia