Donald Trump is using his Art of the Deal to attack Hillary Clinton’s Wall Street fundraising spigot by promising to reinstate the Depression-era Glass-Steagall Act that her husband, President Bill Clinton, repealed in the waning days of his Administration.
The demand to repeal Glass-Steagall is also a page taken from Hillary’s primary opponent, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), and offers an opportunity to hit her from the left as well as the right.
According to a report by The Hill, Donald Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort told reporters in Cleveland on the first day of the Republican National Convention that the GOP Platform would include language calling for “a reintroduction of Glass-Steagall, which created barriers between what big banks can do.”
And, indeed, the final platform — passed by the convention on Monday — did (emphasis added):
The Dodd-Frank law, the Democrats’ legislative Godzilla, is crushing small and community banks and other lenders. The Federal Communications Commission is imperiling the freedom of the internet. We support reinstating the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 which prohibits commercial banks from engaging in high-risk investment.
The former Secretary of State has never had a morally dilemma about being politically “flexible” regarding what she advocates or opposes. Once for the Keystone XL pipeline and the Trans-Pacific Partnership, Hillary triangulated away to oppose the both measures that she had helped negotiate. To buy love from her liberal nemesis, Sanders, she flipped to support his 1) free in-state public college tuition; 2) $15 minimum wage; and 3) “Medicare for all.”
Although Clinton talks tough — “I have what I consider to be a more comprehensive approach to what we need to do to rein in these institutions, including the big banks” — she set a firewall against re-instating Glass-Steagall’s prohibitions, which would destroy big banks’ incredibly lucrative securities and derivatives trading rights.
Ever since her husband’s repeal of Glass-Steagall in 1999, Wall Street has been shown leadership in fundraising for Hillary Clinton. Citicorp was number one, and Goldman Sachs was the number four contributor to Clinton’s 2000 Senate campaign. Six years later, Citicorp and Goldman Sachs were again the top two contributors to Hillary’s 2006 reelection campaign. Furthermore, six of the top ten organizations that gave to her campaigns and leadership PAC between 2001 and 2006 were from Wall Street banks, investment firms, and insurance companies.
Clinton’s strong ties with Wall Street were evident in her first run for the presidency in 2008. Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, and the now-bankrupt Lehman Brothers led a gaggle of banks and their lawyers as Clinton’s third-largest source of campaign cash.
Accounting for nine of Mrs. Clinton’s top 20 donor organizations, financial service industry contributions were far ahead of the cash Clinton has raked in from traditional liberal donors tied to public education and women’s issues.
After Clinton lost, Goldman Sachs was Obama’s second-largest contributor, and 8 of his top 20 largest contributors that helped the junior senator from Illinois raise a record $745 million were Wall Street banks and law firms.
Number 8 in Donald Trump’s “11 winning negotiation tactics” of The Art of the Deal is “when people treat me badly or unfairly or try to take advantage of me, my general attitude, all my life, has been to fight back very hard.”
Expecting the Clintons and their surrogates to come at him very hard, Trump is putting the re-instatement of Glass-Steagall in the Republican platform as a direct attack on Hillary Clinton’s Wall Street fundraising.
Now, every time Hillary Clinton receives a another contribution from any entity or employee of a Wall Street bank, Trump will be able to attack her on the right and the left for selling out main street citizens to Wall Street interests.