Rep. Levin on Emergency Economic Stabilization Act
“Today’s vote must not be the last word. There are times when a nation faces a crisis and the worst alternative is inaction. This is such a time.
“Unless we deal with the financial troubles that Wall Street and other financial institutions have helped to create, we will all be hurt by the instability in the entire financial system. Including the millions of Americans struggling to keep a roof over their head, families who need to borrow money to send a child to college and businesses like the auto industry which depend on the availability of affordable loans.
“We added to the original Bush Administration proposal important provisions: to help families stay in their homes; to ensure that taxpayers are repaid before shareholders profit from this assistance; to stop high paid executives from receiving excessive compensation or severance packages at taxpayer expense; to ensure tough oversight of the program and release of the funding not at one time, but in stages. When the legislation came to the Floor today it was no blank check.
“In the days ahead, in the Presidential and Congressional campaigns, there will be continued debate over what many of us believe have been the misguided policies of the Bush Administration.
“In the meantime, the President and Republican leaders in the House need to convince more Republicans to join the necessary bi-partisan effort to address what the Secretary of Treasury and Chairman of the Federal Reserve have vigorously described as a serious crisis that will not be resolved by inaction.”