Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Dodd retirement a boon for banks?

Posted By on Wed, Jan 6, 2010 at 6:27 PM

Writer Ryan Grim has an excellent story on Huffington Post that should be of interest to people in the banking industry. We understand there may be a few such persons here in Charlotte, which is why we bring it up. Grim points out that the upcoming retirement of Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.), announced today, could wind up being a windfall for the financial industry.

As Dodd leaves his post as chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, next in line to replace Dodd (at least in terms of seniority) is Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), who, not to put too fine a point on the matter, has been in the back pocket of credit card companies, Wall Street, and pay-day lenders from the get-go. Dodd’s support in his home state crumbled once it was revealed that he had finagled rules changes to allow big financiers to continue getting big bonuses, so some observers think Johnson could be scared to appear too pro-Wall Street. But with important regulatory legislation pending, progressives are pressuring the Democratic party to skip over Johnson and give the chairmanship to Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.), a longtime consumer advocate. That kind of move has not been uncommon in both parties over the years. As Grim points out, “If Democrats decide to deny Johnson the chair, his declining health could be used as political cover. He is still recuperating from a brain hemorrhage he suffered in 2006.”

Sen. Tim "Smiley" Johnson -- Bank of America's new BFF?
  • Sen. Tim "Smiley" Johnson -- Bank of America's new BFF?

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