You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to myStatesman.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks

X

Welcome to myStatesman.com

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on myStatesman.com.

U.S. Rep. Williams: CHOICE Act would have toughest penalties for fraud


Economists at a prominent think tank based in Washington, D.C. last week reported that a full repeal of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act would boost the economy by 1 percent and generate $340 billion in federal revenue over a 10-year period.

Dodd-Frank, as it is called for short, was passed by the Democrat controlled Congress and signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2010. At more than 2,000 pages, the law is the most sweeping financial regulation enacted since the Great Depression.

It was sold to the American public as a Washington crackdown on greedy Wall Street banks that put the U.S. economy into a tailspin. Crafty messaging professionals created an advertising gimmick in the title of the law itself.

But as the saying goes: You can’t judge a book by its cover.

Rightfully, at the time, the American people wanted their government to respond to an economic collapse — and it did. The problem was that the action that was taken did too little to prevent history from repeating itself and too much to hurt the little guys that were in no way responsible for the Great Recession.

In our home state of Texas, since Dodd-Frank’s implementation, community banks have closed their doors and no new banks have been chartered. Considering most small businesses, which represent 99.7 percent of all U.S. businesses, rely on local lenders to expand, create jobs and conduct further research and development, Dodd-Frank has, and will continue to have, negative effects on the U.S. economy.

In a recent op-ed in The Hill, those same think-tank economists wrote, “There is good reason to believe (Dodd-Frank) may also increase the frequency and severity of recessions and may diminish innovation in the financial sector and elsewhere.” Simply, Dodd-Frank was the wrong prescription for our nation’s troubled financial sector.

That is why my colleagues and I on the House Financial Services Committee have a plan that will actually prevent a similar financial collapse from happening again while lessening the current overregulation of Main Street.

Our Dodd-Frank replacement — the CHOICE Act — will impose the toughest penalties in history for financial fraud and will once and for all end taxpayer funded bank bailouts.

The CHOICE Act will force more accountability on both the banks on Wall Street and on the bureaucracies in Washington that have forced unnecessary, costly compliance measures on mom-and-pop shops throughout the country. Washington’s regulators will be accountable to members of Congress rather than being allowed to make decisions without any repercussions from American voters.

In a recent piece that I wrote with U.S. Sen. David Perdue, we said that legitimate oversight over the financial sector is important. Very few — if any — lawmakers will disagree with this sentiment.

Today, the federal government is wrongly deflecting blame to smaller financial institutions that should not be required to meet arbitrary compliance measures that are forcing them out of business. The CHOICE Act will correct that and actually punish bad actors who wreak havoc on the livelihoods of everyday, hard-working Americans.

Williams, an Austin Republican, serves on the Financial Services Committee in the U.S. House of Representatives. He is the vice-chair of the subcommittee on Monetary Policy and Trade.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Opinion

Commentary: New patient information sharing system will save lives
Commentary: New patient information sharing system will save lives

Ten years ago, Thomas Tierney almost died after taking a drug for his neurological condition. A doctor noted the near-fatal reaction in Tom’s medical chart, which went into the office’s file cabinet. A year later, Tom went into the hospital after a fall. A different physician noted his neurological condition and prescribed the drug from...
Commentary: Don’t write off coal
Commentary: Don’t write off coal

Conventional wisdom has it that the U.S. coal industry peaked a decade ago and is in a state of permanent decline. Recent data would seem to bear this out. Domestic coal production has dropped from 1.2 billion short tons in 2008 to 739 million last year while employment in coal mining, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, has fallen from nearly...
Herman: GOP, in charge for now, faces perilous future
Herman: GOP, in charge for now, faces perilous future

Not long ago I had the eye-opening opportunity to hear a presentation here in Austin from Robert P. Jones, the CEO of the Washington-based Public Religion Research Institute and author of a 2016 book about something about which we’re all familiar. Yes, it’s hard to offer something eye-opening about something about which we’re all...
Commentary: The Republicans who took on Richard Nixon
Commentary: The Republicans who took on Richard Nixon

“Well, he better start fighting for me or he’s gonna be out! I want him to do right, but he must not cut the president!” That was Richard Nixon, caught on tape shouting about his attorney general, Elliot Richardson, who had just insisted on his independence during the Watergate investigation. Nixon’s ire was prescient &mdash...
Letters to the Editor: May 24, 2017
Letters to the Editor: May 24, 2017

Re: May 5 commentary, “Why Cinco de Mayo has new meaning in today’s America.” Good commentary from Morán González on Mexican-Americans’ resolve to fight against racial discrimination in Texas. He mentioned the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), and said that the group’s U.S. citizenship requirement...
More Stories