Hensarling blasts Dodd-Frank, administration on economy

The chair of the House Financial Services Committee had harsh words for the Dodd-Frank Act and the Obama Administration’s overall handling of the economy today

Hensarling blasts Dodd-Frank, administration on economy

At today’s full committee markup of a series of bills designed to boost the economy, House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) had harsh words for the controversial Dodd-Frank Act and the administration’s handling of the economy as a whole.

Hensarling’s first jab was over the recent weak jobs report.

“Just days ago the nation received the most recent monthly jobs report, and to say the report is a disaster is a huge understatement,” he said. “It was the weakest jobs report in nearly six years and adds to the litany of facts and figures showing that the American people continue to hurt.

“Incomes are falling. Wage growth is stagnating,” he added. “The number of Americans living in poverty has increased by nearly 7 million during the current administration. The percentage of Americans working or actively seeking work is at its lowest level since the malaise of the Carter era.”

Hensarling dinged the administration over the national debt, which he said had grown by 80%, and “the slowest, weakest recovery in our history.”

Hensarling also blasted the Dodd-Frank Act, saying the legislation has piled on regulations that are strangling businesses.

“Since the adoption of the Dodd-Frank Act, it is more difficult for small businesses to obtain crucial capital, especially at the early stages,” he said. “As we heard in testimony before our Capital Markets subcommittee just two months ago, there has been a serious decline in loans from banks to small businesses over the past several years, and we have gone a decade with no growth in the value of small business loans.”

Hensarling said that during the first quarter, almost 40% of small business owners had to transfer personal assets to help keep their businesses afloat.

“Sixty-one percent of small business owners feel their growth opportunities are restricted by the current business environment, an increase of 7% from a year ago,” he added.

Hensarling has long been a critic of Dodd-Frank, maintaining that its regulations amount to government overreach that is harming both businesses and consumers. In March, the Texas Republican said the act amounted to “regulatory waterboarding.”

“Dodd-Frank should be called the Obama Financial Control Law, because that’s what it is,” Hensarling said at the time. “It stands as a monument to the arrogance and hubris of man in that its answer to incomprehensible complexity and government control is yet more incomprehensible complexity and government control.”