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Congress Passes Financial Reform Bill

Carolyn Kaster/AP
Carolyn Kaster/AP

The largest financial regulation overhaul in generations made its way through Congress yesterday after Senate approved it and sent it to the desk of President Barack Obama.

After almost a year of debating over its new rules, the bill passed with a vote of 60-39 vote and proves to be a huge victory for Obama after his promise of a change following the collapse of the financial system.

“Because of this reform, the American people will never again be asked to foot the bill for Wall Street’s mistakes,” said Obama in a conference following the bill’s passing. “There will be no more taxpayer-funded bailouts — period. If a large financial institution should ever fail, this reform gives us the ability to wind it down without endangering the broader economy. And there will be new rules to end the perception that any firm is “too big to fail,” so that we don’t have another Lehman Brothers or AIG.”

The president credited the efforts of Chairman Chris Dodd, Congressman Chairman Barney Frank, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi for the bill’s creation and passing of Congress.

“I am extraordinarily grateful for their determination in the face of a massive lobbying effort from the financial industry, and I’m also grateful for all of the members of Congress who stood on the side of reform — including three Republican senators who put politics and partisanship aside today to vote for this bill,” he said.

The bill will have an impact on almost every corner of the financial world and will add regulators to keep an eye on future financial problems, put regulations into place that to slow down some of the risky practices that pushed the United States down a path of financial depression and institute a consumer protection bureau designed to protect consumers from predatory lenders.

“Along with the steps we’re taking to spur innovation, encourage hiring and rein in our deficits, this is how we’re ultimately going to build an economy that is stronger and more prosperous than it was before, and one that provides opportunity for all Americans,” the president said.

While the changes will take several years, the first big event to take place is the immediate creation of the Federal Insurance Office.

The president is scheduled to sign the legislation next week.

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