Bloomberg News

Frank Says Republican President Would Be ‘Danger’ for Bank Rules

December 01, 2011

Nov. 29 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. Representative Barney Frank, the Massachusetts Democrat planning to retire the end of his current two-year term, said the possible election of a Republican president could lead to the undoing of the financial regulation law that bears his name.

“The most significant danger is the election of a Republican president next year who would be committed to first try and dismantle it and failing that, appoint people who wouldn’t administer it,” Frank, the top Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee, said today at a Washington news conference where he discussed his decision to leave Congress.

Frank pointed to Republican presidential contenders, including former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Texas Governor Rick Perry and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, who have said they would repeal the Dodd-Frank Act law if elected. Republican lawmakers were nearly unanimous in opposing the measure when it was passed last year, and they have continued to complain that it over-regulates and fails to address problems that contributed to the 2008 credit crisis.

In a wide-ranging, 55-minute news conference, Frank, 71, said he wouldn’t want to serve as secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development after he leaves Congress at end of next year. He said he would continue to defend Dodd-Frank after he steps down.

The sovereign debt crisis in Europe has “held back” the nation’s recovery, Frank said, adding that he believes U.S. banks are “well prepared to deal with this unless everything falls apart.”

--Editors: Gregory Mott, Lawrence Roberts

To contact the reporter on this story: Phil Mattingly in Washington at pmattingly@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Lawrence Roberts at lroberts13@bloomberg.net


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