Ten Reasons to Oppose Dodd-Frank – a message for Scott Brown

July 6, 2010 06:13

It’s a bad bill. There is no reason to rush this process, other than that the Democrats want to pass this legislation while they have favorable numbers, leaving themselves plenty of time to pass other bad pieces of legislation before the public has its say in November.

The Editors at National Review Online

Shortly after you were sworn in to fill the Senate seat previously held by Ted Kennedy, you famously declared, “I’ll be the 41st vote, not the 60th vote.” Your meaning with respect to health care was clear: I will stand between the voters and the federal takeover of health care that they oppose. But there are other areas of policy to consider as well. We understand that you will not always vote with the Republicans, but neither were you elected to be a reflexive 60th vote for the Obama-Reid-Pelosi agenda, as your opponent Martha Coakley would have been.

We harbored no illusions that every vote you cast would please conservatives. But we noted at the time that on issues such as uncontrolled deficits, constitutional rights for terrorists, and a proposed bank tax, you successfully campaigned against the Democrats’ position and won. We figured you would be with us more often than not, but that representing the Bay State would lead you to take a few votes per year on which we would have to agree to disagree.

Senator Brown, there is no need for the upcoming vote on financial regulation to be one of those. It’s a bad bill. The voters of Massachusetts can be persuaded to side with you against it, or at least to understand why you opposed it and to weight it lightly when considering whether to send you back to Washington. Moreover, having staked out a firm position against either increasing taxes on banks or adding to this year’s mammoth deficit, you are obliged to oppose the bill in its current form.

The Democrats have removed the $19 billion bank tax, which prompted your initial opposition, but they have replaced it with other bank taxes and with deficit spending. As long as the Democrats refuse to cut government spending to fund the reforms they want, this will be an insoluble problem. This bill should be tabled and taken back up in 2011, when Republicans will presumably hold a stronger negotiating position and can push for further improvements.

Your opposition can pave the way for this outcome. On this issue, you can be the 41st vote. Of the Democrats who voted against the bill, Maria Cantwell has now decided to support it, but Russ Feingold is holding firm in his opposition. From the Republican side, Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe seem likely to vote yes, but Chuck Grassley is probably a no: He voted against cloture last time, even though he eventually voted for the bill. Depending on when and with whom West Virginia governor Joe Manchin fills the late Robert Byrd’s Senate seat, you are the deciding vote.

There are many reasons to vote against this bill. Here are just a few:


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