PRESS RELEASE: NEW RESEARCH SHOWS HOUSE FINANCIAL SERVICES COMMITTEE MEMBERS RECEIVED NEARLY $70 MILLION FROM WALL STREET INTERESTS

Committee to receive testimony on the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission report today

New analysis of new subcommittee chairs’ Wall Street donations raises questions about impartiality

Washington, D.C. – House Financial Services Committee members have received $69.7 million in campaign contributions from the finance, insurance, and real estate sector over their careers, according to a Public Campaign Action Fund analysis of data from the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. The analysis comes as the committee is set to hear testimony on the causes of Wall Street’s collapse from the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission (FCIC), a congressionally-established investigation.
 
The FCIC identified political spending as a key fact in its January 27th report, writing that “[from] 1999 to 2008, the financial sector expended $2.7 billion in reported federal lobbying expenses; individuals and political action committees in the sector made more than $1 billion in campaign contributions.”
 
“The fact is, the financial crisis resulted from the actions of too many greedy bankers while too many politicians took money, passed laws supported by Wall Street, and looked the other way when warning signs emerged,” said David Donnelly, national campaigns director of Public Campaign Action Fund. “But what’s more unconscionable is that people are still losing their homes and are without jobs, while Congress has done little to make the banks and other Wall Street speculators pay for their fraud. Perhaps that’s because too many of the people we elect are looking after their campaign contributors and not their constituents.”
 
Of the nearly $70 million in campaign donations, Republicans on the committee received $39.1 million, and Democrats received $30.7 million from the sector. In just the last election cycle, the 61 members of the committee took $19.4 million from the sector, an average of $317,667 per member.
 
The analysis also explored the new chairman of the committee and a few of the new chairmen of the subcommittees. Information about industry fundraising by Chairman Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.), Rep. Scott Garrett (R-N.J.), and Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-Texas) can be found at this link: http://www.campaignmoney.org/Report_Financial_%20Services%20_Committee

“It’s time Congress listened to everyday people, not big money contributors,” Donnelly said.
 
Public Campaign Action Fund is a national nonpartisan campaign finance group that works to hold elected officials accountable and to further comprehensive reforms that place elections into the hands of everyday Americans.