Monday, April 19, 2010

The Daily Strike-4/16/10-Not Playing Ball

Good evening and welcome to the Daily Strike. Make sure you catch up on the week in politics in the Weekly Strike below. Here's what happened today in politics.

FINANCIAL REGULATIONS: It looks like Democrats still have not peeled off the one Republican vote needed to begin debate on the financial reform bill. I'll first note how absurd it is that a) we need 60 votes just to debate something, and b) zero Republicans are willing to even debate a bill that would help prevent the next economic catastrophe. I mentioned this morning that Majority Leader Reid had hoped to begin debate on the bill this week. Since Democrats have yet to win over a Republican vote to put them at the magic 60, they'll have to delay until next week.

Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner held meetings today with Republicans Collins and Snowe of Maine, but neither of them made commitments about supporting the bill. They also did not lay out any specific demands as to what they would want in the legislation. It seems that Republicans, both conservatives and moderates, are once again using the "let's go back to the drawing board" meme.

Unlike during the health care debate last December, we unfortunately have to listen to them. That is the ultimate result of Scott Brown's election in Massachusetts. We can't even begin debate on a Wall Street reform bill. I'm not sure that's quite what Bay State voters intended.

The President on Thursday goes to Wall Street to make a direct pitch for financial reform. He needs to articulate clearly what the bill will do for the American people. I'm thinking something like " You worked hard your whole life and played by the rules, and you set aside a little money so that you could have a dignified retirement. But the Wall Street fat cats made risky bets with the money you entrusted to them, and they lost it. We need to make sure they can never do this again. All lawmakers need to decide: are you with the Wall Street bankers or are you with the American people?"

THE SENATE: The Senate, in lieu of the financial reform bill, will spend most of the week on lingering nominations. They started today by voting to end debate on the nomination of Lael Brainerd to be Undersecretary of the Treasury by a 84-10 vote. All no votes were from Republicans. A vote on the nomination itself will be held midday tomorrow.

The House was out today. They'll gavel back in tomorrow.

That's it for now, see you later!

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