Obama Expected To Send Strong Message to Big Banks: No Longer Business as Usual

DATE: January 27, 2010

Financial Reform Needed To Set the Country on the Road to Recovery

Latest NBC/WSJ Poll says Americans want stronger regulations to rein in Big Banks: “Nearly three-quarters say that not enough has been done to regulate Wall Street and the banking industry

Washington, DC – Americans for Financial Reform released the following statement on the eve of President Obama’s State of the Union address.

Heather Booth, Director, Americans for Financial Reform: “Tonight we expect the President to reinforce his ambitious agenda for financial reform, which includes powerful measures to hold banks accountable for the recklessness that led to our financial crisis and the loss of millions of jobs. We anticipate that the President will again make clear that the cornerstone of this agenda must continue to be creation of a strong, independent Consumer Financial Protection Agency that will crack down on exorbitant fees and deceptive practices of credit card companies, mortgage brokers and others who prey on hard-working Americans.”

Nancy Zirkin, Executive Vice President, Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights: “We expect the President will use the State of the Union to draw very clear lines: Either you are with the big banks, or you are with the American people. We have certainly seen in the last month, as bailed-out banks pay themselves outrageous bonuses, what’s good for the banks is not what’s best for this country. Those who oppose this reform are standing with the Wall Street lobbyists who are trying to keep the system rigged so that it benefits them, not us.”

John Taylor, President, National Community Reinvestment Coalition: “Tonight, the American people will look to President Obama for ideas and leadership to create jobs and grow the economy. To do so, he must restore confidence in the integrity of the financial system and enact strong measures to purge the reckless and irresponsible activities of the Wall Street banks that brought the economy down. Reform of the financial system is change the American people can get behind.”