Call the Pope because hell is freezing over:
Senators John McCain and Maria Cantwell are joining forces to reinstate the Depression-era Glass-Steagal [sic] Act of 1933, which separated commercial banking from Wall Street investment banking. According to Newsweek, the two plan to announce the bipartisan McCain-Cantwell bill on Wednesday morning.
The Glass-Steagall law was repealed in 1999, allowing for commercial and investment banking to combine. Bloomberg notes that its repeal has sparked debate as to whether it "helped spawn reckless lending practices and financial speculation that led to the meltdown of credit markets last year and the $700 billion U.S. bailout of troubled banks."
There is something here that really has me scratching my head. Glass-Steagall was repealed by the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act in 1999 and proudly signed into law by then-President Bill Clinton. The main author of that bill was Phil Gramm, who also served as the top economic adviser to the McCain/Palin campaign. So Gramm was good enough to advise McCain on economic issues, yet McCain now wants to repeal Gramm’s keystone legislation?
I love the idea of us getting back to real regulation in the banking sector but I really question the motives of McCain on this issue.