Some influential liberal lawmakers are calling on Wall Street to denounce the appointment of Stephen Bannon to President-elect Donald Trump’s administration.
Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown, and Reps. Maxine Waters of California and Keith Ellison of Minnesota, all Democrats, sent a letter to the leaders of various financial services industry groups, calling on them to “speak out.”
The recipients were the heads of the Financial Services Roundtable, the Securities Industry & Financial Markets Association, The Clearinghouse, the National Association of Federal Credit Unions, the Investment Company Institute, the Independent Community Bankers of America, the Credit Union National Association and the Mortgage Bankers Association.
“As leaders in the business community, you have a moral obligation to speak out against this appointment as contrary to the values of this country and to the values of your industry,” the lawmakers wrote.
They went on to cite instances when Breitbart News, the conservative news website where Bannon serves as executive chairman, published racially inflammatory and misogynistic headlines, noting that former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard David Duke praised Bannon’s appointment.
Brown and Waters carry a large amount of credibility with the industry as Brown is the top Democrat on the Senate Banking Committee and Waters is the ranking member on the House Financial Services Committee.
Moreover, Ellison is currently running to be chairman of the Democratic National Committee and Warren has often been a thorn in the side of the financial services industry.
“This moment is a test of the moral leadership of the banking and finance community,” the letter read, adding that Bannon’s views would not be welcome in the companies the industry operates.
Bannon previously worked at Goldman Sachs, beginning in the 1980s.
“If you fail to speak up now, it will only empower the Trump administration to go further down this dangerous path,” the letter closed.