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Public Statements

Swap Jurisdiction Certainty Act

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. CAPUANO. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentlewoman for yielding.

Look, this bill is not going to create jobs in America. This bill is all about foreign swaps. If we're going to create jobs, we're going to create them in foreign countries.

By the way, Dodd-Frank exempts foreign swaps activities from derivatives regs, except when they have--and this is a quote from the bill--``direct and significant connection with activities in, or effect on, commerce of the United States.''

Other than that, if they don't affect us; they're not subject to regulation. Simple. But if they're done in a foreign country and they affect us, if it's just a way to get around our regs, they're subject to United States regulation. It's really kind of simple.

By the way, according to The Wall Street Journal, the sixth largest banks of the United States combined have 22,621 subsidiaries. That's an average of 3,770 subsidiaries each. Why? In order to get around this kind of regulation.

I don't blame them. I'm not against swaps. I'm not against swaps conducted on foreign soil. I simply want them subjected to United States regulation. I don't think it's that difficult. I don't understand why we have to do this, except to say, Here's a big open door. This is a huge hole to the regulatory process of the United States of America.

I understand that some Members of this body don't like any regulation, and I respect that. But get up and say it.


Mr. CAPUANO. What this bill says is if you do this activity in the United States of America, you'll be subject to certain regulations. If you do the exact same activity through a subsidiary in a foreign country, you will not be subject to our regulation. That's an open invitation to move American jobs offshore. It's an encouragement to move American jobs offshore. It is blatantly obvious. How that is good for the American economy, I don't know. Why would we want to say to any American company some foreign regulator is better than us?

Now I know we are going to have this debate in other matters later on this week, saying just the opposite. So in this case, foreign regulators are better, but in other cases, they're not. It's kind of stunning. We actually did it this morning on another matter.

I want to join with the AFL-CIO in making a pretty clear warning to my colleagues: if this bill becomes law, I regretfully agree that there will come a day that you'll regret this vote, as many of us, not me, but many of us regret the vote for the PATRIOT Act.


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