We’ve seen all the headlines: JP Morgan Chase took risky bets and lost two billion dollars in a matter of weeks.
CEO Jamie Dimon called the bets “poorly reviewed” and even “sloppy.” He added, “We will learn from it, we will fix it, and we will move on.”
Frankly, I don’t think we should just trust Wall Street banks to regulate themselves. Because as we learned during the 2008 financial crisis, they are not just taking risks with their own money — they are taking risks with the whole economy.
That’s why today, with the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, I’m calling on Congress to put Wall Street reform back on the agenda and to begin by passing a new Glass-Steagall Act. This was the law that stopped investment banks from gambling away people’s life savings for decades — until Wall Street successfully lobbied to have it repealed in 1999.
A new Glass-Steagall would separate high-risk investment banks from more traditional banking. It would allow Wall Street to take risks, but not by dipping into the life savings and retirement accounts of regular people.
And by making banks smaller, a new Glass-Steagall could also help put an end to banks that are “too big to fail” — further avoiding costly taxpayer bailouts.
Wall Street’s risky bets nearly brought the economy to its knees in 2008. But instead of taking responsibility, Wall Street lobbied to water down the Dodd-Frank financial reforms of 2010 and fought to weaken the reforms Congress passed.
It has become clear over time — and made even clearer this past week — that additional Wall Street reforms are needed.
Thousands of Progressive Change Campaign Committee members have stood with me in my campaign for the Senate — and many were with me before that when I was fighting for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
If I’m elected to the U.S. Senate from Massachusetts, I promise this difference from my Republican opponent Scott Brown: I will be a reliable and strong champion for commonsense Wall Street reform. But we don’t have a moment to waste.