Why Do Republicans Want to Unregulate Wall Street?

Fight disinformation. Get a daily recap of the facts that matter. Sign up for the free Mother Jones newsletter.

I understand why Republicans want to repeal Obamacare. I understand why they want to cut taxes on the rich. I understand why they want to slash social welfare programs for the poor. I may not like it, but I mostly understand it.

But why do they want to repeal the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill? Their base doesn’t care about it. The banking industry is fighting over the details but seems mostly willing to live with it. Credit unions and small banks want relief from certain parts of the law, but that’s a fairly limited thing.

So what’s the point? Republicans would like to get rid of the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau because they historically hate consumer protection. That much I get. But why get rid of OLA, the provision that helps regulators perform an orderly liquidation of a big bank like Lehman Brothers? Why get rid of the provision that allows extra scrutiny and tighter rules for “systemically important” banks? Why exactly are Republicans opposed to that?

I’m sort of mystified about this. I mean, sure, these provisions are (a) regulations, (b) Democratic regulations, and (c) Democratic regulations on rich people. I guess that’s enough. But who’s pressing them on this stuff? It’s crazy on the face of it. The 2008 meltdown happened less than a decade ago. Why would even a Republican be opposed to raising capital requirements on big banks and insisting that the financial industry pay for any future bailouts?

ONE MORE QUICK THING:

Or at least we hope. It’s fall fundraising time, and we’re trying to raise $250,000 to help fund Mother Jones’ journalism during a shorter than normal three-week push.

If you’re reading this, a fundraising pitch at the bottom of an article, you must find our team’s reporting valuable and we hope you’ll consider supporting it with a donation of any amount right now if you can.

It’s really that simple. But if you’d like to read a bit more, our membership lead, Brian Hiatt, has a post for you highlighting some of our newsroom's impressive, impactful work of late—including two big investigations in just one day and covering voting rights the way it needs to be done—that we hope you'll agree is worth supporting.

payment methods

ONE MORE QUICK THING:

Or at least we hope. It’s fall fundraising time, and we’re trying to raise $250,000 to help fund Mother Jones’ journalism during a shorter than normal three-week push.

If you’re reading this, a fundraising pitch at the bottom of an article, you must find our team’s reporting valuable and we hope you’ll consider supporting it with a donation of any amount right now if you can.

It’s really that simple. But if you’d like to read a bit more, our membership lead, Brian Hiatt, has a post for you highlighting some of our newsroom's impressive, impactful work of late—including two big investigations in just one day and covering voting rights the way it needs to be done—that we hope you’ll agree is worth supporting.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate