Sure, Paul Volcker is awesome, but that may not be enough to prevent his banking rules from dying before they're even born. The problem, as it tends to be these days, is Republicans. Richard Shelby, the ranking Republican on the Senate Banking Committee, said today that he opposes Volcker's plan to limit the type of trading large banks can perform as well as President Obama's plan to tax big banks. If Democrats push forward with Volcker's plan, Shelby says, they risk losing the bipartisan support that the current version of financial regulatory reform enjoys. Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd is afraid of this and according to one of his underlings, he's planning to drop or significantly modify the Volcker rule:
"Chris is retiring so he wants to end his career with an important regulatory reform bill and he wants to make the bill bipartisan," the staffer said. "He is not going to risk bipartisan support to make the White House happy."
It would be easy to blame Dodd for having no back bone and caving to Republicans, but that's also pretty unfair. Remember, with 41 Senators, the GOP is now in the majority.
Volcker rule unlikely to move forward in Senate, lawmakers say [Financial Times]