Trump signs Dodd-Frank rollback

President TrumpDonald John TrumpDemocrats' CNN town halls exposed an extreme agenda Buttigieg says he doubts Sanders can win general election Post-Mueller, Trump has a good story to tell for 2020 MORE on Thursday signed a bipartisan bill to loosen key portions of the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010, cementing the first major changes to President Obama’s landmark banking law.

Trump enacted the legislation during a White House ceremony two days after the House of Representatives passed the bill to exempt dozens of banks from strict federal regulation.

Trump had pledged to “dismantle” Dodd-Frank, a law long targeted by Republicans, and touted the bill he signed as the first step in that process. While the bill will release dozens of banks from stronger Federal Reserve oversight, it falls well short of the president’s vow to repeal and replace Dodd-Frank.

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“We’ve kept a lot of promises,” Trump said. “This is truly a great day for Americans, and a great day for workers and small businesses across the nation.”

The bill signed by Trump was the product of years of bipartisan negotiations between Republican senators opposed to the entire law and moderate Democrats concerned about its impact on community banks and credit unions. The narrow GOP majority in the Senate made it impossible to pass a Dodd-Frank rollback without the support of moderate Democrats.

The legislation was introduced in November by Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike CrapoMichael (Mike) Dean CrapoGraham says he's 'not interested' in Mueller testifying Senate needs to stand up to Trump's Nixonian view of the Fed Senate bill seeks to bring freedom back to banking MORE (R-Idaho) and a group of moderate Democrats on the panel, including Sens. Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampPro-trade groups enlist another ex-Dem lawmaker to push for Trump's NAFTA replacement Pro-trade group targets 4 lawmakers in push for new NAFTA Biden office highlights support from women after second accuser comes forward MORE (N.D.), Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) Tester20 Dems demand no more money for ICE agents, Trump wall Overnight Energy: Bipartisan Senate group seeks more funding for carbon capture technology | Dems want documents on Interior pick's lobbying work | Officials push to produce more electric vehicle batteries in US Bipartisan senators want 'highest possible' funding for carbon capture technology MORE (Mont.), Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyK Street boom extends under Trump, House Dems Some in GOP fear Buttigieg run for governor Paul Ryan joins University of Notre Dame faculty MORE (Ind.) and Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerDems reject Barr's offer to view Mueller report with fewer redactions GOP senators divided on Trump trade pushback Hillicon Valley: Trump unveils initiatives to boost 5G | What to know about the Assange case | Pelosi warns tech of 'new era' in regulation | Dem eyes online hate speech bill MORE (Va.).

Trump on Thursday praised “a lot of great Democrats” who had written the bill, but did not invite most of its Democratic authors to the signing ceremony.

Trump only invited Heitkamp to the event, snubbing Tester, Donnelly and Warner.

A Donnelly aide said his office "was told by the White House he would not be receiving an invitation due to space constraints.” Even so, the event was attended by close to two dozen lawmakers and administration officials, some of which had little to do with the legislation signed by Trump

Trump was also joined by Vice President Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PenceDemocrats' CNN town halls exposed an extreme agenda Weld: 'We would be much better off with a President Mike Pence' Gabbard: Trump, Pence 'try to hide the truth' of Saudi-inspired terrorist attacks from Christian supporters MORE, Crapo, House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb HensarlingThomas (Jeb) Jeb HensarlingMaxine Waters is the Wall Street sheriff the people deserve Ex-GOP congressman heads to investment bank The next two years of federal housing policy could be positive under Mark Calabria MORE (R-Texas) and Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinThe Hill's Morning Report - Will Joe Biden's unifying strategy work? Lighthizer, Mnuchin to travel to China for latest round of trade talks On The Money: Treasury misses second Dem deadline on Trump tax returns | Waters renews calls for impeachment | Dem wants Fed pick to apologize for calling Ohio cities 'armpits of America' | Stocks reach record high after long recovery MORE.

The president was also flanked by several Republican members of the Senate Banking and House Financial Services panels, along with GOP lawmakers that had little input on the bill Trump signed.

Sen. Steve DainesSteven (Steve) David Daines Embattled senators fill coffers ahead of 2020 Main Street businesses need permanent tax relief to grow Overnight Energy: Bernhardt confirmed as Interior chief | Dems probing if EPA officials broke ethics rules | Senators offer bipartisan carbon capture bill MORE (R-Mont.) was in attendance for the ceremony, despite not being on the Banking committee or a co-sponsor of the legislation. Tester aides saw Daines' invitation as a move motivated by politics, snubbing the Democrat who had spent years crafting the bill.

A spokeswoman for Daines said "Since he was elected into the House, Daines has been consistently working on the repeal of the disastrous Dodd-Frank legislation," and pointed to his votes and speeches in support of the bill Trump signed Thursday.

The final compromise leaves most of Dodd-Frank in place, but provides a major boost for some of the largest U.S. banks. The measure releases of regional banks from tighter regulation by raising the threshold for closer Fed oversight from $50 billion to $250 billion in assets.

Banks below the new threshold will no longer be automatically subject to annual Fed stress tests and capital buffers meant to protect large firms are from severe financial crises.

Those banks are also no longer required to from submit for Fed approval a “living will” that outlines how a bank’s assets could be liquidated upon the firm’s failure without causing a widespread meltdown.

The bill includes several provisions to scrap rules for community banks and credit unions. Firms that hold 500 or fewer mortgages a year will no longer have to report some home loan data to federal regulators under anti-discrimination laws.

The bill also broadens the definition of qualified mortgages for smaller firms and exempts banks and credit unions with less than $10 billion in assets from the Volcker Rule, which bans firms from making risky bets with their own assets.

Trump said the rollbacks would help community banks and credit unions become “vibrant and strong,” insisting years of overregulation had suffocated small firms.

“They shouldn’t be regulated the same way as big complex financial institutions,” Trump said. “This is all about the Dodd-Frank disaster.”
Bank and credit union lobbying groups praised Trump for enacting the regulatory relief they’ve sought for years.

Rebeca Romero Rainey, president and CEO of the Independent Community Bankers of America, said the law “unravels many of the suffocating regulatory burdens our nation’s community banks face and puts community banks in a much better position to unleash their full economic potential.”

Updated at 1:37 p.m.