Maryland, Arizona, and Virginia Take Action on Glass-Steagall Resolutions
February 8, 2014 • 9:22AM

Maryland and Arizona were the two latest state legislatures to introduce Glass-Steagall resolutions in 2014. Maryland HJR 8 was filed on Thursday, Feb. 6, with a total of 50 sponsors, which is more than one-third of the House Chamber of the General Assembly. Three of the sponsors are chairs of committees in the House, and the number includes 3 Republicans. The resolution is the same language of a resolution that was introduced in Maryland last year (2013). It is of note that three members of the Maryland Congressional delegation — Barbara Mikulski (D) in the Senate, and Donna Edwards (D) and Elijah Cummings (D) in the House — are signers of current Glass-Steagall legislation in their respective chambers.

In Arizona, HCM 2011, the state's first resolution supporting Glass-Steagall, was filed on Feb. 6th with 14 sponsors in the House, and 4 sponsors in the Senate. Three Democratic Congressional members from Arizona — Raul Grijalva, Kyrsten Sinema and Ann Kirkpatrick — have co-sponsored HR 129 for Glass-Steagall in the House, and Sen. John McCain (R) is a co-sponsor of S. 1282, the Senate Glass Steagall bill, along with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).

On Feb. 7 in Virginia, SJ 22, a resolution to support Glass-Steagall restoration, entered into the Virginia State Legislature sponsored by Senator Richard Black, was taken up by the Senate Rules Committee. While the Resolution was ultimately tabled (as is the case with virtually all memorializing resolutions in Virginia), Sen. Black requested and was granted a few minutes to make a presentation on the Resolution. He was supported in this request by Democrat John Edwards, the new chairman of the Rules Committee, who swept aside objections from other members of the Committee to discussion of the Resolution.

Edwards took the opportunity to announce that the was he was in favor of the restoration of Glass-Steagall (although he did not go on the record in favor of overriding the standing rule against resolutions). Sen. Black used his time to describe the origins of Glass-Steagall in the Roosevelt administration, its role in separating commercial and speculative banking, and the urgent need for its restoration; particularly given the fact that Dodd-Frank is wholly ineffective and that the speculative activity of the "too big to fail" banks is run at the cost of the American taxpayer and with the danger of creating financial chaos. Sen. Black emphasized the growing support for Glass-Steagall in the Congress, particularly noting the entry of S-1282 into the U.S. Senate and reading out the powerful list of co-sponsors.