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Public Statements

SEC Regulatory Accountability Act

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. HIMES. Thank you, Madam Ranking Member, and thank you for your leadership of our side on this committee.

Mr. Chair, I rise in opposition to H.R. 1062.

I find it curious that Chairman Hensarling, a man for whom I have a great deal of respect, frames this legislation in the context of the huge impact that financial regulation is supposedly having on jobs in his district and on jobs in this country.

I've read all of the economic reports from the Federal Reserve to economists on the left and the right, and not one of them says that our economy is recovering slowly because of financial regulation. They talk about the austerity. They talk about the sequester as meaningfully reducing the number of jobs in this country. By the way, they're policies that Chairman Hensarling's party has supported from moment one. They talk about Europe. They talk about housing. They talk about inadequate demand. Nobody says that financial regulation is materially impeding our recovery.

Curious that that's on the table.

Curious also that 2 days ago this House passes legislation to demand the SEC to speed up its rule writing on the JOBS Act, and today we are here to pass a measure that would actually slow down the SEC.

Curious. Why is that?

Curious that the other side, my friends in the Republican Party, have consistently sought to underfund the SEC at the very moment in history when we have added dramatically to their purview--the derivatives market, the mortgage market--that they now must regulate. Yet, in 2011, when they were first to assume these responsibilities, the Republicans sought to cut the SEC budget by $300 million against what was ultimately paid for.

So what is really happening? If I may quote the chairman, what is this really about? None of that makes sense.

What this is really about is an ongoing ideological effort to tie the regulatory agencies up by cutting their budgets, by refusing to confirm their leadership, by imposing litigation hurdles and cost-benefit analyses ad nauseam such that they cannot do their job; and if they can't do their job, this country loses jobs.

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