GOP budget steers clear of Dodd-Frank repeal

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The proposal assails Dodd-Frank on several fronts, calling it a flawed effort that puts too much power in the hand of unelected bureaucrats, creates hundreds of new rules, and could actually ensure future bailouts if large financial firms collapse.

But the budget also makes clear that Republicans do not believe the financial sector should go completely unwatched, adding that the government has a "critical role" in overseeing markets and punishing those who break its rules.

The tempered tone indicates a difference between how heightened regulations on the financial sector are viewed on Capitol Hill versus the sound bite-laden primary-campaign trail. Lawmakers who actually have the power to alter the law have so far steered clear of outright repeal attempts.

In the House, legislation has been introduced to repeal the law outright, but has attracted just 11 co-sponsors, and no members of House leadership. A similar bill in the Senate has pulled in some top GOP officials, including Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.), but such a bill faces extremely long odds in a body controlled by Democrats.

In the House, where Republicans do control the levers of power, the GOP instead has pushed a number of small, targeted bills that change or repeal specific provisions of the law, instead of a sweeping overhaul. They have also put pressure on regulators to avoid writing onerous rules, and have resisted White House attempts to expand their budgets to meet their expanded Dodd-Frank obligations.