Consumer groups and unions are crying foul after Senate Republicans voted to block debate on the financial regulatory reform bill.
Americans for Financial Reform’s Heather Booth called the vote a win for Wall Street.
“Over a year and half later, instead of allowing a debate on the financial reform legislation that will help rein in Wall Street and protect consumers, this evening Republicans, joined by Senator [Ben] Nelson [D-Neb.], decided to march in lock-step in defense of the big banks,” Booth said in a statement.
“The loser tonight is not the Democratic Party or the Republican Party, it is the American people who will continue to be left to the mercy of the Big Banks,” she added.
The Senate failed Monday night to clear a key procedural hurdle to advance to the bill, falling two votes shy of the 60 needed to begin debate on the measure.
The vote went down along party lines, with the exception of Nelson, who voted “no.” Senate Republicans had signaled over the weekend that they would oppose the measure.
SEIU Secretary-Treasurer Anna Burger called for no more delays in moving forward on the bill to rein in Wall Street.
“The American people have waited long enough for action and now it’s time to allow debate and move forward on the strong Wall Street reform bill currently before the Senate,” she said in a statement.
AARP also voiced its disappointment in the vote’s failing.
“AARP is disappointed by the results of today’s vote to block debate on moving necessary financial reforms forward,” AARP Executive Vice President Nancy LeaMond said. “Older Americans have lost billions of hard-earned dollars due to the failure of an outdated and compromised financial regulatory system.”
“Investors deserve to know the benefits and the risks involved in the products they are buying, and their retirement security should not be compromised by reckless behavior on the part of bad actors,” she added.
Despite the failure of the measure to move forward, both Republican and Democratic Senators said they believed there’s still a good chance at reaching a compromise bill.