INVESTIGATE FINANCIAL CRISIS
Washington, DC : May 6, 2009 - Continuing Congress’ commitment to consumer protection and financial reform, U.S. Rep. Mike McIntyre voted today to drastically toughen the enforcement and prosecution of mortgage and corporate fraud.
The Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act will provide critical funding and tools to help law enforcement pursue and prosecute the type of fraud many blame for the worst financial crisis in decades. The legislation will also establish a bipartisan commission to investigate the causes of the collapse of our financial system and the ensuing recession.
Congressman McIntyre stated, “This bill is about demanding accountability. Millions of Americans lost their savings, their homes and their jobs, and we have witnessed breathtaking levels of fraud in recent years to today’s mortgage scams and the crisis in the mortgage industry. We simply cannot let something like this happen again. That’s why I’m pleased that the Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act gives law enforcement the tools and funding to go after corporate and mortgage fraud.”
The investigative commission created by this legislation will have subpoena power, and will bring accountability to a system where reckless behavior has gone unchecked in the past. It is similar to the Pecora Commission established to investigate the 1929 stock market crash. That commission’s investigation uncovered the fraudulent and unscrupulous practices on Wall Street that led to the Great Depression and laid the groundwork for the regulatory structure that served this country for decades. In fact, it is the weakening of that regulatory framework that created the conditions leading to our current economic crisis.
“It’s clear that the regulations we have in place now are not working,” explained Rep. McIntyre. “We need to understand what conditions led to this crisis as we move forward with common-sense reforms to prevent it from happening again in the future.”
The Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act is the latest in a series of consumer protection reforms recently passed by the House. Last week, the House passed the Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights, which includes tough new protections for consumers facing excessive credit card fees, sky-high interest rates and unfair agreements that credit card companies revise at will. Later this week, the House is expected to vote on the Mortgage Reform and Anti-Predatory Lending Act to curb abusive and predatory lending.
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