As part of his critique of President Obama’s policies, Gov. Rick Perry (R) has been saying that the administration is not doing enough to “free up” Wall Street. During a campaign stop today, Perry said that one of the “first things we need to do” is repeal the Dodd-Frank financial reform law, because new laws aren’t needed to rein in the “few bad actors” on Wall Street:
So freeing up the industry, whether you’re a bank or whether you’re a credit union, freeing them up from overregulation. I think overregulation of all of those industries is obviously a part of the problem. And repealing that Dodd-Frank act is one of the first things that we need to do…Do we need to have protections in place? Of course we do. But I would suggest to you that we have those protections in place today for the few bad actors that might be out there in the world. But the overregulation from Washington D.C., this one-size-fits-all, has to end.
But Perry didn’t always feel this way. In fact, in 2008, with the financial system cratering, Perry criticized the banking industry, saying that it “has too often been run on greed“:
“My concern is that Washington is so inept at addressing these issues that are important to Americans, whether it’s securing our borders or whether it’s securing our financial future,” Perry said. “Washington has been absolutely abject failures at this.”
Perry stopped short of endorsing any particular approach to the U.S. financial meltdown and warned against any measures that would allow shady business practices to continue.
“We’re sick and tired of watching Washington bicker with each other while financial markets are roiled,” he said. “The other side of that is we’re certainly not interested in Washington bailing out a bunch of irresponsible mortgage brokers in an industry that has too often been run on greed.”
Despite this stated opposition to bailouts, shortly after the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) failed to pass the House on its initial vote, Perry sent a letter to Congress in his capacity as head of the Republican Governors Association that read “We strongly urge Congress to leave partisanship at the door and pass an economic recovery package. It is time for Washington, D.C. to step up, be responsible, an do what’s in the best interest of American taxpayers and our economy.”
Perry now denies that the letter expressed support of TARP, but its hard to read it otherwise. At a campaign stop today, Perry replied “no, maam,” to a woman who asked if he supported TARP.