After coming close several times only have to required 60 Senate
votes slip away, Democrats may have finally secured
the passage of
financial regulatory reform. The most recent hurdle
came with the death
of West Virginian Democratic Senator Robert Byrd
. The bill, backed by
President Obama, is intended to better regulate Wall Street and to
prevent another global financial crisis. Here's how they may have done
it, assuming nothing changes before the final votes are tallied.
Republicans to the Rescue The Washington Post's Brady Dennis reports, "Two
key Republicans said Monday that they plan to support a far-reaching
bill to overhaul financial regulations, all but ensuring that the
landmark legislation will sail through the Senate in coming days." They
are Sens. Scott Brown of Massachusetts and Olympia Snowe of Maine. "The
landmark legislation now seems likely to land on the president's desk
within days, giving Democrats an opportunity to proclaim during the
coming election season that they acted to rein in the recklessness of
- Scott Brown Is the New Key To Everything
The New Republic's Noam Scheiber writes, "As
the 41st Republican in an institution that requires 60 out of 100 votes
to pass legislation, he's had the power to stop, or at least massively
slow down, everything from health care to financial reform. But Brown
actually looms much larger than even this calculus would suggest. In his
concerns, priorities, and, maybe most important, his confusion about
the economy, Brown has come to represent the average voter in 2010. If
Democrats are going to be successful this November, they'll have to
figure out a way to seize the territory that Brown currently holds."
Politico's Ben Smith calls Brown "the
- Could Democrat Ben Nelson Sink It? Talking
Points Memo's Brian Beutler explains,
"The bad news: Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) explicitly told reporters this
evening he's not committed to voting for the legislation, citing a
handful of measures, and concern about potential future directors of the
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. ... The suggestion is that Nelson
wants input behind the scenes on who the White House might nominate to
run the new agency." If Nelson doesn't get what he wants, he may vote
- ...But Byrd's Replacement Could Come This Weekend The
Associated Press's Lawrence Messina reports, "West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin
says he'll make a temporary appointment to the late Robert C. Byrd's
Senate seat by Sunday.Manchin said Monday he could announce his pick as
early as Friday." That replacement could be able to vote for financial
regulatory reform, off-setting Nelson.
Why Is Democrat Russ Feingold Still Voting No? Politico's Carrie
Budoff Brown writes, "He's been a hero to liberals for voting
against big banks, the Iraq war and the Patriot Act. But Sen. Russ
Feingold's decision to become the only Democratic vote against Wall
Street reform has left many questioning his strategy. ... he's been
stubbornly, defiantly opposed to the legislation -- Feingold
calls it a cave-in to Wall Street. ... But what really galls some on the
left is that Feingold's resistance
opened the door for deal making -- and Massachusetts Republican Sen.
Scott Brown walked right through, making Brown the kingmaker on the bill
that many on the left thought Feingold could have been."
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