Sen. Elizabeth Warren Rips The SEC For Failing to Protect the Public

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In yet another example of how politics are personal, the public is being put at risk by the head of the SEC failing to implement regulations meant to protect the public.

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass), watchdogstress of the too-big-to-fail giants who run our country on the backs of the 98%, sent a 13-page letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chair Mary Jo White on Tuesday, calling her out for failed promises and failing to protect investors and the public.

“I am disappointed that you have not been the strong leader that many hoped for – and that you promised to be,” Senator Warren wrote.

In a press release, Warren’s office summarized four main “disappointments” and failures:

Senator Warren’s letter highlighted four key areas where Chair White appears to have broken promises made to members of the Senate: the SEC’s failure to finalize rules requiring disclosure of the ratio of CEO pay to the median worker; its failure to curb the use of waivers for companies that violate securities law; the agency’s continued practice of settling the vast majority of cases without requiring meaningful admissions of guilt; and Chair White’s repeated recusals related to her prior employment and her husband’s current employment.

And there was another biggie — the failure to “address undisclosed corporate campaign contributions.”

Among several listed requests for more “information” about these failures, Senator Warren demanded an explanation for why the SEC removed campaign finance disclosure from its agenda.

White took the position of chair on April 20, 2013. The Democratic Senator has been so alarmed by White’s failure to regulate and thereby protect the public, that she met with White on May 21, 2015 according to her letter. At this meeting, Senator Warren reports she had little indication that White would be changing any of her practices in response to Warren’s concerns.

How is this country ever supposed to get back on track and recover from the disastrous Bush years if agency heads are allowed to play fast and loose with the law as it applies to big corporations?

Warren further charged “the agency’s rulemakings that have created large loopholes in Dodd-Frank disclosure rules”. Isn’t that comforting.

It gets worse.

“Even worse, at that same meeting, you provided me with what appeared to be misleading information about the timing of new CEO pay disclosure rules that was contradicted by an Office of Management and Budget (OMB) publication released that very same day.”

After Senator Warren reminded White that Warren’s questions and White’s answers were clear during the meeting, Warren wrote, “I am perplexed as to how and why you would have provided me with such misinformation.”

If Warren’s concerns are on target, and there is reason to suspect they are in spite of White’s statement accusing the Senator of “mischaracterizing” her words, investors and the public are being led down the same Hell path that stole their investments in the 2008 Bush crash. There is no excuse for a failure to protect the public in this way.

If White is doing her job as a regulator, she needs to pony up the proof. Claims are not enough. And why does she keep pushing back the delivery date for implementing new rules? That should be a priority, especially after the 2008 collapse. If bailing the banks out was an emergency, why not protecting the people – some six years later. They have waited long enough.

The public deserves hardcore evidence that they are not being screwed again in order to allow the big guys to profit on their backs.

Regulations are meant precisely for this reason – to protect the public from the greed and deception that often follows when the bottom line/profit margin is allowed to dictate rules. Of course many companies will choose to lie to the public. They did it before and they will do it again because it makes them money.

The public has subsidized corporate misdeed and greed for far too long. The crash of 2008 wiped out their savings and retirement accounts, no matter the diligence they performed when investing because they were lied to by companies that were not being watched over (aka, regulated). The public can have no confidence in investing, which ultimately – ironically – hurts the very companies that make their profits by deceiving the public.

This is a dire warning from Senator Warren. Watch your backs, people.

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18 Replies to “Sen. Elizabeth Warren Rips The SEC For Failing to Protect the Public”

  1. It might be a good idea to inquire about how often an SEC worker goes on to work in the Investment Industry post SEC employment.

  2. Love Warren, gives a good speech, really seems to care. But your a Senator, time to start introducing legislation.

  3. Legislation that would not see the light of day in the Turtles senate. Until the Dems take back the senate and the house with filibuster proof majorities, any such legislation would be impossible to be passed.

  4. That’s obvious, but the idea is to put something forward that the Republicans will knowing block and bludgeon them with it. There’s an election next year. We need to take the Senate. The more hammers we have the better.

  5. Senator Elizabeth Warren is a National Treasure. Hope she’s under very strong protection.

    They took Paul Wellstone from us…

  6. Wall Street and the White House had a swift and furious reaction to Elizabeth Warren’s blazing attack on Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Mary Jo White: Senator, you’ve gone too far. Defenders of White’s tenure at the regulatory agency said Warren’s 13-page letter attacking the SEC chair raised highly questionable points and badly mischaracterized the actions of a widely respected former federal prosecutor.

  7. I withheld my opinion till I heard both sides. My opinion of EW still stands as it was before this latest event.

    She is a piece of work.

  8. I lost faith in Warren a while back. I think she misrepresented herself as her agenda now seems to be to undermine the Clinton campaign, as well as the President who helped her get to where she is. She just made a 180 too quickly.
    The TPP is going to address problems we have with NAFTA. Why would she or Bernie have a problem with that?
    At least White was upfront about there being times that she might have to recuse herself in the future due to conflicts of interest BEFORE she was confirmed. White’s honesty then shows me she is trustworthy now.

  9. I have caught her in a dozen lies. Flat out lies not even close to little white ones – over the years.

    She voted for Mary Jo knowing she had to recuse herself on family issues. It was discussed and she approved it. Now she attacks what she herself approved.

    The disclosure is handled by the FEC not the SEC and she makes common mistakes like that frequently.

    I watched her go ballistic years ago over things that ended up not true.

    She accused White of lying when she herself does all the time. Funny how accusers are guilty of things themselves.

    The OMB changed the date. She blamed White.

    She seems jealous of White? And Hillary?

    I don’t know. She likes to screech and wave her arms.

  10. Well over the years, many times over the years, I would be reading an article about her and say that isn’t right, she must know that. Then it would come out she was wrong or misspoke.

    A few weeks ago she was standing in Cali, waving her arms yelling that nobody can see the TPP. And she insinuated (so did Bernie) that Hillary needs to take a stand and not be on a fence.

    Hillary had several statements about the way it was when she saw it when she worked on it at STate. The way it changed is unknown and till she reads it when it is public she cannot say what is in the deal (before it is voted on we all see it for months) she will say so then.

    Also, she had caveats, what she would insist on it providing. And specifics about what is wrong with it.

    So Warren pretended it is secret and Hillary is on a fence. NOT TRUE.
    Obama said she wasn’t being Factual! He said she is a politician… he sais it is not accurate… her amendement was flawed.

    She made a big todo for her er…

  11. Then she made this big scene over her amendment not being put to the vote. When it was flawed… and it didn’t come close to passing. Nobody wanted it.

    But she had to have her way and make it take up precious time other amendments could have had.

    There were 150 amendments not all came to the floor for a vote, only ones with backing and likely to pass.

    She made a big to do. LOST by like 20 votes.

  12. Back when Geithner was in she did the same thing to him. Attention seeking for her fans. And they are fans, they aren’t supporters. It is a bunch of kids who cheer when she blows her nose.

    Grandstander, always was in my opinion.

    Pay attention to Mass. That is what she was elected to do.

    She wants to be one issue Liz, godmother of the tea party left.

  13. Geithner, who writes that he has a “complicated relationship” with Warren, also said he thought her populism detracted from the issues at hand.

    “Her [bailout] oversight hearings often felt more like made-for-YouTube inquisitions than serious inquiries,” Geithner wrote about Warren, according to The Hill. “She was worried about the right things but she was better at impugning our choices — as well as our intentions and our competence — than identifying any feasible alternatives.”

  14. Go read the politico link above and then look at Warren related articles on her recent speeches. You want me to go find where she said that about Hillary! She and Bernie have said it several times.

    You support them. I know more about your candidate than you do? You keep asking for proof of Bernie and Liz’s remarks.

    Listen to them sometimes!

    Or google last week what she said.

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