Calling out McConnell, cont’d

CALLING OUT MCCONNELL, CONT’D…. Sounds like a good message to me.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid released a statement today accusing Sens. Mitch McConnell and John Cornyn of holding a “secret, closed-door meeting with Wall Street executives” this month.

“Senators McConnell and Cornyn should immediately reveal what they discussed earlier this month during secret, closed-door meeting with Wall Street executives in New York City. Years of greed and excess on Wall Street cost 8 million jobs and trillions in wealth for middle-class families and small businesses. Since Republicans appear to be conducting backroom negotiations with these same people who took our economy to the brink of collapse, the public deserves to know what secret deals and carve-outs Republicans are offering Wall Street executives in exchange for their support.”

The Senate Minority Leader clearly didn’t want to talk about his closed-door meeting with hedge fund managers, bankers, and Wall Street elites when he appeared on CNN yesterday, so it makes sense that Reid would keep pressing this point.

For its part, the White House is on the same page. It’s latest talking points hammer the point home:

As is the case with most major reforms, the special interests and lobbyists that stand to profit from the status quo, as well as their allies in Washington, are fighting to block or weaken this bill. We’ve seen Republican leadership meet with Wall Street executives to discuss ways to block progress on this important issue. And the Senate Republican Leader has taken to using talking points drafted by a pollster with Wall Street clients to say that these reforms will enable future bailouts.

In related news this afternoon, Maine Sen. Susan Collins (R) announced that she will refuse to allow the Senate to even begin a debate on Wall Street reform. Collins met with Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner about the bill, but told reporters after the meeting that unless the bill is “bipartisan,” she will reject an effort to begin consideration of the legislation on the Senate floor. What kind of substantive changes does Collins have in mind that would convince her to let the Senate at least start debating the bill? She hasn’t said.

Remember, Susan Collins is one of the “moderates” in the Republican Party. In other words, she’s ostensibly someone Dems can work with in good faith. So much for that idea.