Wall Street’s diminished influence in Washington was made plain yesterday when the Senate voted to approve financial reform legislation by 59 votes to 39.
Industry lobbyists will point out the bill only just managed to scrape the required votes needed to end debate and forestall a filibuster. It fell far short of a lopsided bipartisan majority.
But the formal tally on HR 4173 (Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act 2009) as amended by S 3217 (Restoring American Financial Stability Act 2010) conceals a much wider bigger majority of 63-37 for enacting far-reaching reforms.
In the final vote on passage, the bill was backed by 53 Democrats, 2 Independents and 4 Republicans (Maine’s Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe, Iowa’s Charles Grassley and Massachusetts’ Scott Brown).
It was opposed by 37 Republicans and 2 Democrats (Maria Cantwell of Washington and Russ Feingold of Wisconsin). Two senators were not present (Democrats Robert Byrd of West Virginia and Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania).