TPM today asked Senate candidate Pat Toomey if he agrees with House Minority Leader John Boehner that the soon-to-be-law Wall Street overhaul should be repealed. Toomey (R-PA) wouldn’t fully endorse Boehner’s idea, but said he opposes the financial reform bill that is slated to pass the Senate this afternoon.
Toomey, a former member of Congress, told reporters on a conference call that he thinks the bill doesn’t go far enough on reforming lending practices of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and is “very, very problematic.” We asked if he supported Boehner, and he said he hadn’t been paying much attention to what Republicans are saying since he’s focused on his campaign against Rep. Joe Sestak (D-PA). But then he went on to mimic some of the GOP talking points.
“This is a badly flawed this bill that will lead to future taxpayer funded bailouts,” said Toomey, a former Wall Street derivatives trader. When pressed by TPM whether he’d support repeal (since he does want to repeal the health care reform law), Toomey said he wouldn’t necessarily go for repeal but instead would “want to consider how we can address these problems.” He said he’d want “all options on the table” for fixing the measure to “address the real reforms we need without impeding access to credit.”
The campaign said among the other elements Toomey would want included in financial reform: require adequate capital to avoid large financial firms from being too leveraged and reform the bankruptcy code to resolve the breakup of failed banks and financial institutions and avoid the need for another bailout.
“I don’t think this bill does any of these things,” Toomey said.
Toomey thanked reporters for asking about policy, but scolded them for not keeping to the topic he’d assembled them for — the spat between his rival and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Two television stations are pulling the chamber’s anti-Sestak ad from the airwaves after the Democrat complained it was misleading.
Toomey said Sestak was being “hypersensitive” since Sestak’s voting record has been to support Democratic leadership and Speaker Nancy Pelosi. “He supports the whole agenda,” Toomey said.
This post has been edited from the original.