Obama signs Wall St. bill into law

Obama signs Wall St. bill into law

President Obama on Wednesday signed the Wall Street reform bill, putting another major item on his domestic agenda into law.

Obama, flanked by congressional leaders including House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd (D-Conn.), noted the bill’s supporters had to “overcome the furious lobbying of an array of powerful interest groups and a partisan minority determined to block change.”

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But Obama thanked the Republican lawmakers who voted for the bill, which he said would help prevent another economic collapse and protect consumers. 

“All told, these reforms represent the strongest consumer financial protections in history,” Obama said. “And these protections will be enforced by a new consumer watchdog with just one job: looking out for people — not big banks, not lenders, not investment houses — in the financial system.”

Others attending the ceremony included Vice President Joe BidenJoseph (Joe) Robinette BidenThe Hill's 12:30 Report Biden to decide on White House run at end of year Stormy Daniels’s 'View' is incorrect MORE; Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner; Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.); Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidGOP poised to advance rules change to speed up Trump nominees Dems walk tightrope on Pompeo nomination The Memo: Teens rankle the right with gun activism MORE (D-Nev.); Sens. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.), Tim JohnsonTimothy (Tim) Peter JohnsonSenate GOP rejects Trump’s call to go big on gun legislation Court ruling could be game changer for Dems in Nevada Bank lobbyists counting down to Shelby’s exit MORE (D-S.D.) and Jack ReedJohn (Jack) Francis ReedDems walk tightrope on Pompeo nomination Dem senators call on FCC to protect against robocalls Senate Dems press Trump on legal justification for potential Syria strike MORE (D-R.I.); House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.); and Reps. Paul Kanjorski (D-Pa.), Collin Peterson (D-Minn.), Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), Mel Watt (D-N.C.), Luis GutierrezLuis Vicente GutierrezWATCH: Gutiérrez says ‘lonely’ Trump can cry on KKK’s shoulder over WH departures Read Trump's remarks at Gridiron dinner Why Puerto Rico cannot govern itself MORE (D-Ill.), Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.) and Dennis Moore (D-Kan.).

The new law gives Obama and Democrats a victory for the summer work period that they hope will allow members to campaign as tireless advocates for the working class, while at the same time painting Republicans as water-carriers for Wall Street fat cats. 

While the emphasis of Obama’s remarks was on consumer protection, he also pledged that reform “will also rein in the abuse and excess that nearly brought own our financial system.”

“It will finally bring transparency to the kinds of complex, risky transactions that helped trigger the financial crisis” Obama said. “And shareholders will also have a greater say on the pay of CEOs and other executives, so that they can reward success instead of failure.”

Republicans blasted the new law, saying it would kill jobs and do nothing to prevent another financial crisis that they said was caused by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

“While President Obama pats himself on the back today, families and small businesses are bracing for yet another big-government overreach that will make it harder to create new jobs,” said House Minority Leader John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerA warning to Ryan’s successor: The Speakership is no cakewalk With Ryan out, let’s blow up the process for selecting the next Speaker Race for Republican Speaker rare chance to unify party for election MORE (R-Ohio).  

“The legislation the president is signing today provides permanent bailouts for his Wall Street allies at the expense of community banks and small businesses around the country, while doing nothing to reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government mortgage companies that triggered the financial meltdown by giving too many high-risk loans to people who couldn’t afford them. 

“It’s no wonder that the overwhelming majority of Americans say the president’s plan won’t work.”