Democratic Senators Outline Demands

Posted September 26, 2008 at 1:03pm

A group of Democratic Senators sent a letter to Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Friday outlining their demands for what should be included in legislation designed to address the crisis in the financial sector.

The letter spearheaded by Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.) says the Wall Street bailout should include limits on executive compensation, taxpayer protection and restriction on assistance for foreign financial institutions.

Another concept floated in the letter would offer installments on the $700 billion figure that the president requested.

Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson balked at the installment idea, arguing that it would not send the appropriate message to Wall Street and would also limit the resources he needed.

“Those of use who have not been among the small group of negotiators have a duty to communicate clearly both our concerns and our expectations as the process moves forward,” Webb said.

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), who has been deeply involved in the negotiations, said several Senate Democrats do not like what they have seen in the language thus far, and have indicated that they would want further changes in order to support the plan.

“There are about 10 to 15 Democrats that would not vote for it as it stands now,” Schumer said.

Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), Ben Nelson (D-Neb.), Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.), Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Ken Salazar (D-Colo.) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) joined Webb on the letter.