Glass-Steagall Key Issue In Nevada Senate Race Debate
October 15, 2012 • 2:08PM

The repeal of Glass-Steagall became a key issue in the second debate between the Democratic and Republican candidates for Senate in Nevada Oct. 11, Las Vegas Review-Journal columnist Steve Sebelius wrote today.

However, Republican incumbent Dean Heller, who attacked Democratic challenger Rep. Shelley Berkley for voting to repeal Glass-Steagall in 1999, has yet do take anything substantial, such as introducing a Senate counterpart to HR 1489. Berkley, who acknowledged that repealing the law was a "mistake," does not support reinstating the law and has refused to support H.R. 1489.

Heller had also voted against the TARP bailout in 2008. He does, however, support such insanities as the Republican plan to turn Medicare into a voucher system of privatized health-care- for-profit, a bailout for the medical insurance companies.

Heller accused Berkley of voting to undermine a key regulation of financial institutions, which created "a very risky situation." Heller called for reinstating Glass-Steagall, telling the editorial board of the Las Vegas Review Journal last week: "I want to move to going back to Glass-Steagall."

During the television debate, Berkley admitted that the repeal was a mistake. "Look, I did vote for the Glass-Steagall [repeal] bill and it was a mistake," but did not call for reinstating the law. "I support the principles of Glass-Steagal, and its repeal was a mistake," Berkley said in a statement. "However, we need to realize that the financial industry is more complex now than it was in the 1930s, and we need a regulatory policy that supports that. I support efforts to rein in bad behavior by big banks and have been a strong proponent for Wall Street Reform because I believe that we must hold banks and Wall Street corporations accountable. Unfortunately, my opponent doesn't agree and voted against Wall Street Reform," meaning the Dodd-Frank law.

But Heller hit back. "So when the banks came and said hey, we want to be deregulated, my opponent said OK," he said. "When they said we made bad decisions because of this deregulation, they said we want to be bailed out, she said OK. And then what happened is they passed Dodd-Frank. The purpose of Dodd-Frank was to give cover for those who voted for the bailout."

N.B. In August, the Northern Nevada Building Trades Union sent letters endorsing Rep. Kaptur's H.R. 1489 Return to Prudent Banking Act to Senators Reid and Heller, urging them on behalf of disentegrating economic conditions throughout the state of Nevada to introduce a bill to reinstate Glass-Steagall in the Senate. Here is that story.