Don't expect lawmakers to make significant changes to the financial regulatory reform bill, a senior Republican senator said Thursday.
House and Senate lawmakers are negotiating the final terms of the bill in a conference committee, but Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), a member of the Senate Banking Committee, said that the fundamental language is probably set despite squabbles some lawmakers have with the final product.
Gregg's comments come as Democrats are trying to bridge a party divide over strict derivatives language included in the bill by Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) that would restrict trading of the financial products many blame for the 2008 financial meltdown.
Centrist and New York House Democrats have expressed reservations with the language and plan to negotiate with Lincoln, despite warnings from House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-Mass.) that the problems do not endanger the bill's chances of passing.
Democratic leaders, however, want to complete work on the bill and present it to President Barack Obama before the fast-approaching July 4 recess.
In order to do so, Democrats have reached out to Republican lawmakers for their support. No House Republicans backed the bill but four Senate Republicans helped pass the upper chamber's version in March.
But Gregg, who voted against the bill, said that the bill has a number of significant problems.
"It's a bill which not only has the derivatives problems, it has the problems related to capital adequacy, the Volcker rule, which is conceptually an excellent idea, [but] executing that rule is going to cause incredible disruption in the credit markets," he said.