Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) took a shot at Hillary Clinton for her “closeness with big banks on Wall Street” in an interview with New Hampshire radio station WKXL on Sunday.
O’Malley has made Wall Street reform one of the cornerstones of his 2016 presidential campaign. In the interview, he described the issue as one of the biggest policy “disagreements” between Clinton, the Democratic frontrunner, and her primary opponents.
“My proposals go a lot further than Secretary Clinton’s. Her closeness with big banks on Wall Street is sincere, its heart-felt, long establish and well known. I don’t have those ties. I am independent of those big banks on Wall Street. And my proposals reflect that,” O’Malley said.
O’Malley has previously suggested he was unclear where Clinton stands on Wall Street reform when he was asked if there were differences in their positions. This is the first time he has seriously attacked her on the issue.
“This is one of the very serious disagreements, policy disagreements in this campaign. I have a great deal of respect for Secretary Clinton, and supported her eight years ago. But the intervening fact that has happened over these eight years is that excesses on Wall Street nearly wrecked our entire economy,” O’Malley said, adding, “We still as Democrats have not followed through on the promise we made to reign in that reckless behaviour so that it doesn’t happen again.”
O’Malley has proposed what he and his team have described as a “mix of structural and accountability reforms” for Wall Street. These include reinstating the Glass Steagall Act, which separates commercial and investment banks, picking appointees for agencies that regulate the financial industry who would be willing to prosecute white collar crimes, barring banks from deducting government fines from their taxes, and establishing a “three strikes and you’re out” policy that would shut down banks that repeatedly broke the law.
Clinton’s campaign did not respond to a request for comment on this story. Last Friday, Clinton made a speech calling for several economic reforms including changing executive compensation and an overhaul of the capital gains tax system that would include an increase for those in the highest tax bracket. She has not specified whether she would support reinstating Glass Steagall.
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