Former New York Governor at a September 2009 conference

Former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer at a September 2009 conference

Seems like old times. 

Eliot Spitzer, who rose to national prominence in 2002 when he forced a sleepy S.E.C. to crack down on conflicted analyst research,  is none too pleased to hear that his old rivals recently joined 12 Wall Street banks in seeking to knock big holes in that wall.

Asked for his thoughts on this Wall Street Journal article that broke the news, this is what he had to tell Reuters in an exclusive interview:

“For the S.E.C. to join with the banks to diminish consumer protections with respect to the quality of advice and research is absolutely and fundamentally violative of their duty to the public.  This one more example of the S.E.C. being in in the tank.”

It’s almost as if we turned the clocks back seven years. Spitzer gained his crusading “Elliot Ness” reputation in 2002 when he took the unprecedented step of probing banks and threatening to prosecute Wall Street executives, stepping around a passive S.E.C.

Yet even after Mary Schapiro replaced the ineffective Christopher Cox as the agency’s chairman, the Feds still appear reluctant to get tough, he said.