We’ve been looking forward to this all day.
Congressman Barney Frank (D-MA) was just a guest on CNBC’s Closing Bell with Maria Bartiromo, and quite frankly, the interview went from zero to ugly in less than two minutes.
Maria started off by asking Barney about the topic du jour, Sandy Weill’s complete reversal on the concept of a the ‘supermarket’ mega bank.
Barney responded saying that it was not a useful time to be talking about this because “you can accomplish much of what he’s talking about with the Volcker Rule…”
To which Maria replied, after much rambling from Barney, that “the problem with the Volcker Rule is that you can’t define it.”
Frank denied that notion. “Most of them (the banks) know what they’re doing. They’re not blindly moving around…”
Maria cut him off saying, “so you’re going to leave it to the banks to tell you this is proprietary trading or this is proprietary trading?”
After that comment, they were off. Barney got frustrated and said, “Maria, if you want to have a serious conversation without mocking me…”
You can imagine the tone of the interview from that point.
Our favourite moment? Maria asked Barney when the fiscal cliff issue would be resolved in Congress saying: “When are the adults going to enter the room?”
To which Barney replied:
I don’t take kindly to being called a non-adult. You know, you remind me sometimes of what your colleague Joe Kernen said when I tried to get the conversation more thoughtful … he said, ‘Oh this is cable TV, not C-SPAN’ … I want to talk seriously about the issues … you keep changing the subject.”
And then they exploded. Watch the ful video below: