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Hillary Clinton’s Top VP Pick Lets Big Banks Know He’s in Their Corner

Sen. Tim Kaine is reportedly Bill Clinton's favorite for the VP slot. PHOTO: US Dept. of Education

“Let’s be really clear: It should be disqualifying for any potential Democratic vice presidential candidate to be part of a lobbyist-driven effort to help banks dodge consumer protection standards and regulations designed to prevent banks from destroying our economy.”
—Charles Chamberlain, Democracy for America

By Deirdre Fulton | 21 July 2016

How Tim Kaine is signaling that he’ll be ‘an asset with banking interests on the fundraising trail’

COMMON DREAMS — Sounding another alarm for progressives wary of the Democratic establishment’s support for Wall Street, the man said to be leading the pack of potential Hillary Clinton running mates—Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine—has just this week sent a clear message to big banks: He’s in their corner.

Kaine, who is reportedly Bill Clinton’s favorite for the vice presidential slot, signed onto two letters on Monday pushing for financial deregulation—letters that show the Clinton camp “how Kaine could be an asset with banking interests on the fundraising trail,” according to David Dayen at The Intercept on Wednesday.

The news should “disqualify” Kaine from the ticket, one prominent progressive group declared Thursday.

The first missive, signed by 16 Democrats and every Republican senator, calls on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to exempt community banks and credit unions from certain regulations.

As Dayen explains:

While this seems benign, tailoring rules that exempt large classes of financial institutions leaves consumers vulnerable to deceptive practices. A rule of this type could allow community banks and credit unions to sell high-risk mortgages or personal loans without the disclosure and ability to pay rules in place across the industry.

The second letter (pdf) deals with even bigger regional institutions, as it is aimed at helping “major firms including Capital One, PNC Bank and U.S. Bank, all of which control hundreds of billions of dollars in assets,” according to the Huffington Post. []

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