What's the only thing powerful enough to stop thousands of bank lobbyists and their millions of dollars in campaign contributions?
Wall Street was counting on the Senate to gut financial reform during committee sessions, far from the eyes of the public. But instead, the reform bill was debated out in the sunlight on the Senate floor and it got stronger and stronger.
Now lobbyists will try one last time to gut the bill behind closed doors during the final negotiations, and we can't let that happen. If we want the final bill to incorporate the strongest elements of the House and Senate bills, we have to tell Congress that backroom dealing is unacceptable, and that the negotiations should be out in the sunlight, on C-SPAN.
Will you add your name to our call for full transparency in the negotiations?
The petition says: "The conference committee negotiations for Wall Street reform must be fully transparent. They should be televised on C-SPAN and the bill text should be made public well in advance of the final vote."
After the House passed its financial reform bill in December, everyone expected that to be the high-water mark for reform. The Senate bill was expected to be far weaker, thanks to the hundreds of lobbyists the banks employ.
But when Senate leaders decided to debate the bill on the floor, rather than in closed-door committee sessions, a funny thing happened. With the public still furious at Wall Street and the SEC pursuing allegations of fraud against Goldman Sachs, no one wanted to be seen carrying the big banks' water. So rather than a weaker bill, the Senate-passed legislation is in most ways stronger than the House's.
But if the final negotiations in the conference committee are taken behind closed doors, it'll give the banks a chance to undo all of the progress reform has made. If we can ensure that the negotiations continue to be held out in the open, it'll give regular folks the upper hand in the final round of battle with the banks.
Will you add your name?
Thanks for all you do.
–Daniel, Matt, Nita, Amy, and the rest of the team
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PAID FOR BY MOVEON.ORG POLITICAL ACTION, http://pol.moveon.org/. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. This email was sent to eddie alfaro on May 24, 2010. To change your email address or update your contact info, click here. To remove yourself from this list, click here.