We need a 21st-century Glass-Steagall Act

Date Posted: 
Monday, August 22, 2016
When the economy crashed in 2008-09, it meant disaster for working and middle-class families. The recklessness of Wall Street created the biggest economic crisis since the Depression.
We're still fighting to make sure Wall Street can't do that to us again-but America's largest banks are even larger now than before the financial crisis. The nation's six largest banks, for example, issue more than two-thirds of all credit cards and hold more than 40 percent of all U.S. bank deposits.
To rein in Wall Street and help people like you and me, we need a 21st-century Glass-Steagall Act. To back this bipartisan idea-a plank in both the Republican and Democratic platforms-we've joined with other progressive and labor organizations that are fighting to make banks smaller, simpler and safer.
Banks shouldn't be allowed to gamble with the savings of ordinary Americans, and they shouldn't receive taxpayer backing for their risk taking. Working people need a rule that separates our piggy banks-ordinary checking and savings accounts-from the casino of Wall Street.
We had rules that protected us for 60 years. Now we need new, modern rules to prevent the Wall Street recklessness that led to the Recession in the first place. Americans deserve nothing less.
Momentum is growing. Now is our chance. A huge majority of working people support this idea-and Sens. Elizabeth Warren and John McCain have introduced a bipartisan bill to make it law.
The people want this bill to pass. It's been introduced in Congress, and both parties are calling for it. There's no excuse for Senate Republicans to drag their feet.
In Solidarity, 
Randi Weingarten 
AFT President
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