Hultgren: “Democrats View Dodd-Frank Like the Ten Commandments”
Washington, DC — Today in a hearing assessing the impact of the Dodd-Frank Act four years after it became law, U.S. Representative Randy Hultgren (IL-14) criticized those who refuse to make changes to Dodd-Frank and defend its entirety with unyielding devotion. This devotion to a flawed law has forced community banks, including those that serve small businesses and rural communities in Illinois, into “regulatory straight-jackets that are designed for big banks, causing them to reduce lending, merge with competitors, or shut down.”
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Following are his prepared remarks:
It is increasingly clear that Dodd-Frank is doing real damage to our economy, and stalling the economic recovery that we all want.
Dodd-Frank spans 2,300 pages, imposes 400 government mandates, and creates vast new bureaucracies.
Despite this, it has not adequately addressed the problems arising out of the recent financial crisis.
This includes the problem of Too Big To Fail, and the need for a regulatory system that decreases, instead of exacerbates, systemic financial risk.
Now some on the other side, including the Obama Administration and most Senate Democrats, view Dodd-Frank like I view the Ten Commandments: inerrant, unchanging, and demanding our complete devotion.
But with all due respect to Chairman Frank, even he would agree that Dodd-Frank did not come down from on high, nor was it written in stone.
Thankfully many on both sides of the aisle on this committee recognize that some parts of Dodd-Frank can be fixed, especially those relating to community banks, credit unions, and the mortgage industry.
After all, Dodd-Frank has had a disproportionately negative impact upon these institutions.
These smaller financial institutions help everyone access the American Dream by extending the credit necessary to own a home, start a small business, or preserve the family farm.
They provide at least 48 percent of small business loans and serve 1,200 rural counties with otherwise limited options.
And they lend based upon personal relationships and local knowledge of a community, not a statistical equation based upon income and credit scores.
Unfortunately, Dodd-Frank too often forces these vital institutions into regulatory straight-jackets that are designed for big banks, causing them to reduce lending, merge with competitors, or shut down.
My constituents in the 14th District of Illinois demand an answer to this problem, which is why I’m grateful for this panel today.