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Here comes Dodd running cover: doubts Warren's confirmability for job of consumer guardian

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depakid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:17 PM
Original message
Here comes Dodd running cover: doubts Warren's confirmability for job of consumer guardian
Elizabeth Warren might not have the votes to win confirmation as head of a new Consumer Financial Protection Agency, Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) suggested Monday. Dodd, the chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, said he sensed rumblings among colleagues that Warren, the chairwoman of the panel overseeing the 2008 Wall Street bailout program, might not get the 60 votes necessary to win confirmation.

"I think Elizabeth would be a terrific nominee," Dodd told NPR's Diane Rehm on Monday. "The question is, 'Is she confirmable?' And there's a serious question about it."

http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/109539...


Robert Kuttner makes an astute point about why the administration shouldn't accede to the Gaithner/Wall Street crowd here:

There is a whispering campaign that Warren would be given a rough time in a confirmation hearing. But a contentious confirmation process would be a pure gift to the White House and the Democrats.

Much of the financial reform package is fairly obscure and technical. Mention the words credit default swap, and it just reinforces the impression that the government is in bed with Wall Street. But consumer protection is the easiest part to grasp. Do we want banks to gouge consumers on overdraft charges, mislead them on the cost of credit cards, and devise deceptive mortgage products? Most Americans would say no.

This is the fight Warren has been waging. If Republican senators want to hold hearings defending the poor misunderstood bankers, and giving the compelling Warren a hard time for protecting consumers, bring it on. It would make terrific television and nothing would be more clarifying about which party is the bigger stooge for Wall Street. This administration needs a few star players who stand up for regular people.

Obama needs to make his decision soon, because the longer this question hangs fire the more annoyed the Democratic Party base becomes with the White House and the more the Treasury invites pressure from the bankers to give the job to anybody but Warren.

More: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-kuttner/the-warren...


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DJ13 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:23 PM
Response to Original message
1. Must be some Dodd fans here
Rec didnt work, so heres a kick.
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ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:24 PM
Response to Original message
2. "I think Elizabeth would be a terrific nominee,"
Who cares what he thinks about the probability of a Warren confirmation?

Also, given that Dodd supports Warren, why is this the big news instead of this: Harkin circulates letter backing Elizabeth Warren as consumer bureau head


People are going to spend more time trying to spin rumors and Dodd's statement about confirmation than calling their Senators to sign Harkin's letter.

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napi21 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:26 PM
Response to Original message
3. I want to know WHY she wouldn't get atleast 60 votes? Is it
Dodd, Liebarman, and the bluedogs? I question why Snowe & Collins wouldn't counter that? What about some of the mid-western Pubs? Do THEY have so much of a tie to the banking industry that THEY wouldn't jump on board?
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:28 PM
Response to Original message
4. First she has to get the nomination. By spreading the rumor
that she is not confirmable, it gives the WH and Timmeh specifically, an excuse not to nominate her.
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Jennicut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:30 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. Nah, I think it is just Dodd being an idiot as usual. I live in CT.
He used to be a decent Senator but he has been there WAY too long now.
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ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:42 PM
Response to Reply #4
10. There hasn't been a single Senator to voice opposition to her yet
Dodd isn't doing that, and maybe his statement will shed some light on any opposition to her.

Still, he is on record as supporting her.

Anyone the administration nominates is going to need the same number of votes for confirmation.

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gateley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:34 PM
Response to Original message
6. Thom Hartmann said Dodd doesn't want her because he's
eyeing a lobbyist gig after he retires.

I thought I liked him -- a lot! -- Now I'm being more thoughtful about it.

It seems he's doing pretty good, cancer-wise.
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depakid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:38 PM
Response to Reply #6
8. I'd surmise much the same
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gateley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:40 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. He was also saying he thought Obama chose Geithner because
he "knew where the bodies were buried". Ain't that the truth. :eyes:
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depakid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:52 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. Speaking of where the bodies are buried
John Talbot (one of those with a track record of getting it right) posits:

The Real Reason Geithner Is Afraid of Elizabeth Warren

Geithner sees the appointment of Elizabeth Warren as a threat to the very scheme he has utilized to date to hide bank losses, thus keeping the banks solvent and out of bankruptcy court and their existing management teams employed and well-paid.

...so where are the trillions of dollars of bad loans that the banks had on their books? They are still there. The Federal Reserve took possession temporarily of some of them as collateral for lending to the banks in an attempt to clean up the banks for their supposed" stress tests". But as of now, the trillions of dollars of underwater mortgages, CDO's and worthless credit default swaps are still on the banks books. Geithner is going to the familiar "bank in crisis" playbook and hoping that the banks can earn their way out of their solvency problems over time so the banks are continuing to slowly write off their problem loans but at a rate that will take years, if not decades, to clean up the problem.

And this is where defeat of the nomination of Elizabeth Warren becomes critical for Geithner. For Geithner's strategy to work, the banks have to find increasing sources of profitability in their business segments to balance out their annual loan loss recognition from their existing bad loans in an environment in which they continue to recognize new losses in prime residential mortgages, commercial real estate lending, sovereign debt investments, bridge loans to private equity groups, leverage buyout lending and credit card defaults.

The banks have made no secret as to where they will find this increase in cash flow. They intend to soak their small retail customers, their consumer and small business borrowers, their credit card holders and their small depositors with increased costs and fees and are continuing many of the bad mortgage practices that led to the crisis (ARM's, option pay deals, zero down payments, second mortgages, teaser rates, etc).

American and Banking Market News reports this week that the rule changes in the financial reform bill may lead banks to start implementing fees that had essentially disappeared from the industry early in the new millennium, such as fees for not meeting minimum balance requirements on a checking account, or reinstituting fees for certain online banking transactions that are currently free or charging to receive a paper statement or to talk to a live teller as Bank of America's CEO has recently proposed.

It is exactly these types of unwarranted fees on small consumers and poorly designed products that Elizabeth Warren will fight against as head of the new consumer finance protection group. And it is why Geithner sees her as so threatening.

Unless the banks are allowed to raise fees and charges on their smaller consumer customers, Geithner's and Summers' scheme for dealing with the banking crisis by hiding problem loans permanently on the banks' balance sheets will be exposed for what it is, an attempt at preserving the jobs of current bank executives at the cost of dragging out this recovery needlessly for years in the future.

For the investment banks without small consumers and depositors to soak, Geithner and Summers have offered an environment with fewer competitors, more dominant market shares for the surviving firms and near monopoly pricing of their investment banking and derivative products to corporate clients and institutional investors to ensure continued and increasing profitability and growth.

Warren's appointment wouldn't just be a setback, it would devastate Geithner's entire plan on how to deal with trillions of bad assets the banks still won't recognize as losers.

More: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/john-r-talbott/the-real-r...
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gateley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 09:23 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. He actually referenced this article so I printed it out today. Haven't read it yet, but
I know I'll be furious.
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paulk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-20-10 08:14 AM
Response to Reply #11
15. this article should be it's own thread
it needs to be read
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OHdem10 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-10 08:35 PM
Response to Original message
7. The problem is Warren is perceived as a straight arrow--you know
crooks do not like straight arrows much less having one
police them.

Not to appoint her makes the whole idea of Consumer Protection
look like a sham. Sorry, but this how I see it.

Who is not going to vote for her???? We shall see those
in the pockets of WS cave once again.
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havocmom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-20-10 01:00 AM
Response to Reply #7
13. K&R for OP and your concise addition to it
We're watching YOU, Senator Dodd.
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BzaDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-20-10 03:15 AM
Response to Original message
14. I would agree with Kuttner here. There is basically no downside to appointing Warren.
If there's a confirmation fight, this is a confirmation fight Obama should WANT to have.
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AzDar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-20-10 08:46 AM
Response to Original message
16. Dodd sold his soul to the highest bidder long, long ago.
Nothing left but a husk...
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