SOMEONE TELL THE GOP MOST OF THE COUNTRY STILL HATES WALL STREET…. I realize that Big Business, and its enormous profits, feel put upon by federal officials, but it’s worth emphasizing the fact that the American mainstream still doesn’t look kindly on Wall Street and the banks.
More than 70 percent of Americans say big bonuses should be banned this year at Wall Street firms that took taxpayer bailouts, a Bloomberg National Poll shows.
An additional one in six favors slapping a 50 percent tax on bonuses exceeding $400,000. Just 7 percent of U.S. adults say bonuses are an appropriate incentive reflecting Wall Street’s return to financial health.
A large majority also want to tax Wall Street profits to reduce the federal budget deficit. A levy on financial services firms is the top choice among more than a dozen deficit-cutting options presented to respondents.
With U.S. unemployment at 9.8 percent, resentment of bonuses and banking profits unites Americans across political, gender, age and income groups. Among Republicans, who generally are skeptical of business regulation, 76 percent support a government ban on big bonuses to bailout recipients, that’s higher than backing among Democrats or independents.
And yet, in Washington, where congressional Republicans have made no secret of their affinity for Wall Street and its lobbyists, there’s a noticeable disconnect. Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.), who is poised to become chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, announced his belief this week, “In Washington, the view is that the banks are to be regulated, and my view is that Washington and the regulators are there to serve the banks.”
Got that? The man Republicans tapped to oversee the banking industry believes it’s his job to work for the banking industry.
Just for good measure, let’s also note that House Republicans assigned Rep.-elect Steve Stivers (R-Ohio) to serve under Bachus on the Financial Services Committee. What’s Stivers’ background? He’s a former bank lobbyist who helped try to kill Wall Street reform, and received $225,750 from Wall Street interests for his campaign.
I wonder if this is what the “populist” Tea Partiers had in mind when they rallied behind GOP candidates and helped elect a Republican-led House.