- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 24, 2018

President Trump on Thursday signed a measure rolling back some of the strict regulations of the Dodd-Frank law that were slapped on banks after the 2008 economic meltdown.

The new sweeping reforms would save community banks that were being driven out of business by the rules and allow them to start lending again, said the president.

He predicted it would usher in an economic boom for small businesses.

“By liberating small banks from excessive bureaucracy — and that’s what it was, bureaucracy — we are unleashing the economic potential of our people,” Mr. Trump said at a signing ceremony.

Peeling back some of the Dodd-Frank law has long been a goal of Republicans and was a campaign promise for Mr. Trump. But the celebration at the White House was overshadowed by the president’s decision to cancel a summit with North Korea leader Kim Jong-un over the communist country’s increasingly hostile rhetoric toward the U.S.

“It was a big deal until this came up,” Mr. Trump said to laughs from the two dozen lawmakers at the ceremony. “But it is important. It’s incredible. And it’s incredible that you’ve done it in a very bipartisan way.”

The House voted 258 to 159 to approve the legislation Tuesday, giving final approval to a compromise bill that won support from moderate Senate Democrats earlier this year.

However, liberal Democrats opposed the rollback. They said it removed protections for consumers and safeguards to prevent another banking industry collapse.

• S.A. Miller can be reached at smiller@washingtontimes.com.

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