Committee Dems Voting No to Tougher Finance Regulations Received Twice as much Money

admin | November 19, 2009

November 19, 2009 - The House Financial Services Committee voted yesterday to give regulators the authority to break up large financial firms that create too much systemic risk, in an effort to prevent future financial crises. The vote passed by a 38-29 margin, but three Democrats joined with all Republicans voting no. Those three Democrats--Melissa Bean (D-IL), Dan Maffei (D-NY), and Gregory Meeks (D-NY)--received an average of $99,483 from banks' PACs in the last two years, 119% more than the average of $45,358 received by the 38 Democrats voting for tougher regulation.

The Financial Stability Improvement Act of 2009 (to be H.R. 3996), sponsored by Barney Frank (D-MA), is one measure in a package of industry reform bills moving through the committee. Developed in response to last year's financial crisis and subsequent bailout of "too big to fail" firms, the bill calls for pro-active regulation of institutions that would otherwise be a systemic risk to global economy.

Paul Kanjorski (D-PA) offered an amendment that strengthens the regulatory language in the bill he originally introduced. Under the language of the amendment, if the size, reach or interconnectedness of any of the 50 largest financial institutions (determined by asset size) poses a systemic risk to the economy, regulators would have the power to limit mergers and acquisitions, eliminate some products or services, or break up the firm. The committee is expected to vote on the bill December 1 and it is scheduled to be on the House floor in mid-December. Scott Valentin, the banking analyst at FBR Capital Markets, has stated that this provision is not expected to survive in the Senate version of the bill.

The amendment was met with fierce resistance from the financial industry, including the Financial Services Roundtable and the Financial Services Forum, and from Republicans, who deemed the measure unconstitutional.

PAC Contributions from Banks to House Financial Services Committee Democrats
Kanjorski, PaulPA-11Yes$179,829
Bean, MelissaIL-8No$135,450
Moore, DennisKS-3Yes$130,750
Frank, BarneyMA-4Yes$124,500
Meeks, GregoryNY-6No$112,000
Velázquez, NydiaNY-12Yes$94,500
Scott, DavidGA-13Yes$93,000
Perlmutter, EdCO-7Yes$88,750
Maloney, CarolynNY-14Yes$88,500
Watt, MelvinNC-12Yes$79,000
McCarthy, CarolynNY-4Yes$63,000
Foster, BillIL-14Yes$61,850
Wilson, CharlesOH-6Yes$61,800
Klein, RonFL-22Yes$60,500
Maffei, DanielNY-25No$51,000
Childers, TravisMS-1Yes$51,000
Hodes, PaulNH-2Yes$50,250
Donnelly, JoeIN-2Yes$47,500
Himes, JamesCT-4Yes$43,900
Carson, AndréIN-7Yes$42,000
Moore, GwenWI-4Yes$41,379
Capuano, MichaelMA-8Yes$40,000
Minnick, WalterID-1Yes$35,000
Hinojosa, RubénTX-15Yes$31,000
Ackerman, GaryNY-5Yes$27,000
Clay, WilliamMO-1Yes$26,650
Lynch, StephenMA-9Yes$26,000
Cleaver, EmanuelMO-5Yes$21,052
Green, AlTX-9Yes$21,000
Peters, GaryMI-9Yes$20,500
Gutiérrez, LuisIL-4Yes$16,500
Ellison, KeithMN-5Yes$14,500
Sherman, BradCA-27Yes$14,000
Miller, BradNC-13Yes$13,500
Baca, JoeCA-43Yes$13,000
Adler, JohnNJ-3Yes$12,500
Kosmas, SuzanneFL-24Yes$9,500
Kilroy, Mary JoOH-15Yes$9,000
Driehaus, SteveOH-1Yes$6,250
Speier, JackieCA-12Yes$5,000
Waters, MaxineCA-35Yes$3,000
Grayson, AlanFL-8Yes$2,000
Average received by the 3 House Democrats voting No$99,483
Average received by the 38 House Democrats voting Yes$45,358


Campaign contributions data provided by the Center for Responsive Politics' OpenSecrets Open Data. Date range of contributions is: August 13, 2007 - August 12, 2009. PAC contributions from the following special interests were included: banks & lending institutions; commercial banks & bank holding companies; investment banking; securities, commodities & investment; and security brokers & investment companies. The draft text of what will be H.R. 3996, the text of the Kanjorski Amendment and the record of the vote on the Kanjorski amendment is on the House Financial Services Committee website.