Sanders pledges to break up 'too big to fail' banks and insurance companies if elected

Senator Bernie Sanders
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Bernie Sanders tore into Wall Street for its "greed," "fraud," and "dishonesty" in a policy address Tuesday just a few subway stops from the financial epicenter in New York City. The Vermont senator and Democratic presidential candidate slammed Hillary Clinton for going too soft on financial regulation and pledged to break up the "too big to fail" banks and insurances companies within his first year as president if he wins the White House.

"Congress does not regulate Wall Street, Wall Street regulates Congress," Sanders said to cheers as he outlined his plans. "As president, we are going to end that reality." Sanders proposed to implement taxes on "Wall Street speculators," take legal action against bank executives for fraud or illegal activity, cap credit-card interest rates and ATM fees, turn credit-rating agencies into non-profits, and reform the Fed.

As it stands now, Sanders said, both the economy and the political system have "been rigged by Wall Street to benefit the wealthiest Americans this country at the expense of everyone else" and "fraud" has essentially become the "business model of Wall Street." "Here is a New Year's Resolution that we will keep," he said, "and that is: If Wall Street does not end its greed, we will end it for them."

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