Republican rhetoric has softened, but the Democrats aren’t laying off at all. At a press event this afternoon, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), the third ranking Democrat took the gloves off, and called the earlier Republican line on financial reform a lie.
“On the health care bill we allowed too many lies to get out there without rebuttal, because we thought they were so obviously untrue,” Schumer said. “But we’ve learned our lesson. And the minute these things come out of the mouths of some of our Republican colleagues, we rebut them. And we rebut them again and again. And fortunately these lies are not taking hold.”Pressed by reporters as to whether he agreed with that interpretation Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid was unwilling to go that far, saying only that the GOP contention that financial reform will lead to more bailouts is “not true.”
At the event, Democratic leadership took the unusual step of showing video clips of GOP leaders intoning against the financial reform bill, followed by a clip of Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) rebutting their claims.
Democrats are poised to force a vote on financial reform this Monday evening, over Republican objections. They say a bipartisan agreement is imminent, and there’s no reason to force a vote earlier than that.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said today that the GOP is out of time.
“If there is some breakthrough agreement [Sens. Richard] Shelby and [Chris] Dodd can offer the first amendment,” Reid said at a press conference today.
Negotiations between Shelby and Dodd, the principal Republican and Democratic financial reform negotiators, will continue at a meeting this afternoon.