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Fitzpatrick Fights Cyprus-Style Bank Deposit Seizures

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Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick (PA-8) has signed on as an original sponsor of H. Res. 166, a House resolution meant to ensure confidence in U.S. bank accounts against arbitrary seizure of personal funds by the federal government in the wake of the financial chaos in Cyprus.

"With all the fiscal uncertainty in places like Cyprus, Europe and right here in the United States, hardworking American families and businesses are owed assurance that their funds are safe in our many local and national banks," said Congressman Fitzpatrick.

"This resolution makes it clear that the federal government cannot confiscate private funds from federally insured deposit accounts," said Fitzpatrick.

The legislation was sparked after Cyprus moved forward with a one-time tax on all deposits in that nation in order to meet its debt and budget obligations. In the case of Cyprus, the suggestion sparked a wave of unease about that nation's banks, raised concerns of runs on banks, prevented bank customers from accessing their savings as well as forced bank closures.

"This measure looks to tell Americans, "Your money is safe in the bank' and to tell the Federal Government "Hands Off'" Fitzpatrick said. "The last thing our economy needs is concerns that the government will take people's savings from their private accounts to help to put the federal government's fiscal house back in order."

The resolution condemns any proposals for the arbitrary seizure of funds by any government agency without due process of law. It goes on to address the idea of a financial transaction tax as a measure that would weaken the United States economy, slow growth and drive investment outside the country.

Rep. Fitzpatrick is a member of the House Committee on Financial Services.

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