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Waters Floor Statement in Opposition to Harmful Dodd-Frank Rollback Bill

Today, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), Ranking Member of the Committee on Financial Services, gave the following floor statement in opposition to S.2155, a bill that damages homeownership opportunities, threatens our economy, and serves as a major giveaway to the nation’s largest banks and bad actors like Equifax:

As Prepared for Delivery

Democrats passed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act to prevent another financial crisis and protect consumers, investors and our economy. The 2008 financial crisis resulted in 9 million people losing their jobs, 11 million people losing their homes to foreclosure, and the loss of $13 trillion in wealth. It was an economic catastrophe that must never be repeated. But now my colleagues on the other side of the aisle are determined to help this President dismantle reforms that are designed to protect us from that kind of devastation to communities.

Republicans are trying to pass this bill off as an effort solely designed to benefit small community banks. But the truth is the bill is packed with poisonous provisions that benefit megabanks like Wells Fargo and companies like Equifax. It also weakens critical mortgage protections to ensure borrowers can afford their loans, and prevent discrimination and fraud.

One of the most harmful elements of the bill is its weakening of the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA), which is a key tool to detect and prevent discriminatory practices in the mortgage market. S. 2155 would allow 85% of depository institutions to avoid reporting new HMDA data required by Dodd-Frank even though they are already collecting the data– badly undermining efforts to ensure fair lending.

But that’s not all. This bill guts many of the protections Democrats put in place to reduce the risk of bank failures and bailouts and ensure that bank failures don’t bring down the economy. It weakens stress tests and capital requirements for big banks, and undermines supervision of large foreign banks like Deutsche Bank.

There is more. Despite Equifax’s carelessness in exposing the personal data of 148 million Americans, S. 2155 rewards Equifax and the other two national credit bureaus by funneling more business their way. It also takes away active duty servicemembers’ right to sue the credit bureaus even if the bureaus fail to provide required free credit monitoring or notify them of scams involving their personal information.

Mr. Speaker, these are just some of the many ways the bill would be harmful. Republicans have stacked the bill with provisions that have nothing to do with benefiting hardworking Americans and everything to do with helping out Wall Street.

Donald Trump and the Republicans already gave a huge gift to big corporations with their tax scam, which came at the expense of hardworking Americans. Now they are pushing this rotten giveaway to Wall Street and big banks that harms consumers and increases the risk of another financial crisis.

I urge Members to oppose the bill and reserve the balance of my time.


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