|2:13 PM EDT||
Judy Biggert, R-IL 13th
Mrs. BIGGERT. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to this rule and to ask this body to step back for a moment to do a quick sanity check. What's the purpose of this bill? I thought its purpose was to rein in Wall Street and end the abuses that precipitated the most massive financial meltdown and economic downturn since the Great Depression. Its purpose is to make Wall Street pay for the abuses, not Main Street. I am all for that.
In fact, along with my Republican colleagues I offered the first reform bill, H.R. 3310, back in July, and many amendments designed to rein in Wall Street, end the abuses, but not harm Main Street. Senate Banking Chairman Chris Dodd's first regulatory reform proposal was similar to ours, and offered great promise. Unfortunately, these commonsense and necessary reforms were scrapped in favor of the bill that we consider today.
Instead, we have before us a bill that turns the stated purpose upside down. What do I mean? Well, the end result is that Goldman Sachs supports the bill and the Chamber of Commerce opposes the bill. Goldman's CEO testified, and I quote, ``I am generally supportive. The biggest beneficiary of reform is Wall Street itself.'' Meanwhile, the U.S. Chamber, which represents Main Street American businesses, opposes the bill.
Wall Street supports this bill while Main Street suffers? Where is the logic in that? Main Street didn't engage in shady accounting gimmicks. Main Street didn't make risky derivatives trades. Main Street didn't issue subprime loans. And yet what we have here is a bill that makes Main Street pay the price. And what is that price? Increased taxes on community banks, manufacturers, small businesses, consumers, and American families that will increase the cost of credit. New taxes will decrease the
credit available to those who need it most, small businesses who seek financing to create desperately needed jobs.
How will new taxes rein in Wall Street? This bill expands the size of government, increasing our national debt, making taxpayer bailouts permanent, and distorts our free market by allowing bureaucrats to pick winners and losers. It regulates the wages of every financial employee, from the janitor to the CEO.
We need commonsense financial reform. And that's not what this bill delivers. I urge my colleagues to oppose this rule and the underlying bill.