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Poll Says Financial Reform Is Crucial

April 19, 2010

LAS VEGAS - People in Nevada and around the country want real financial reform and they want it right away, according to a recent survey. The poll from the Pew Charitable Trusts says reform measures now being debated in Congress are hugely important to Nevadans and are vital for returning public confidence to the economy.

Gordon McDonald, the director of the Pew Financial Project, says nearly half of the population has lost a job or is close to someone who has, and he says people feel frustrated that, two years on, the root causes of the financial crisis haven't been addressed.

"That's particularly the case with this notion that certain financial institutions or certain banks are too big to fail. This is a notion that I think does not sit well with many Americans."

McDonald says the issue is very important to voters, and that if politicians don't pass reform they will pay in November.

"Fifty-nine percent of voters thought Congress and the Administration should support financial reform now, over other priorities including health care, immigration reform, the war in Afghanistan, and education reform."

McDonald says people are paying close attention. He says that to be effective reform should do four things: put an early warning system in place; allow for restraining or breaking up banks that get too big; increasing transparency; and protecting consumers from unfair practices.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell says the reforms now being debated would institutionalize bank bailouts, but Nobel Prize economist Paul Krugman says they would institutionalize bailouts the way fire departments institutionalize house fires.

Mike Clifford, Public News Service - NV