As President Obama reprimands Wall Street bankers and makes his final case for financial reform, GOP leaders in the Senate are softening their criticism of the proposed regulations. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who just days ago warned that the reform package would lead to more taxpayer "bailouts," now says he's hopeful a bipartisan deal can be struck within days. Why the change of heart? (Watch a CBS report about the Republicans' reversal)
Obama scared sense into the GOP: The White House is playing hardball to save financial reform, says John Dickerson in Slate, and it's working. Obama called McConnell "cynical and deceptive" for saying the new regulations would lead to further bailouts, and essentially accused the Republican leader of being "in the pockets of Wall Street bankers." In this climate, McConnell couldn't afford to let that charge stick.
Republicans just want the right kind of reform: Republicans were never against financial reform, says Duncan Currie in National Review. They opposed the Democrats' approach, which doesn't deal with the problem of banks that are "too big to fail." But if there's a possibility for bipartisan reform incorporating GOP proposals that "shield taxpayers from future corporate bailouts," Republicans should do what they can to pass it.
"A Republican financial reform"
Finally, we're talking policy, not politics: Thanks to a fresh Goldman Sachs scandal, the GOP is doing everything it can to distance itself from greedy banks, says David Dayen in Firedoglake. Fortunately, that means that the political "game of chicken" is over, and both sides can now sit down at the bargaining table and hammer out a financial reform package that is "worthy of the name."
"As Republicans wilt on FinReg, can we now talk about the policy?"