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April 8, 2013

Better Markets Statement on Senate Confirmation of Mary Jo White as the next Chairman of the SEC


The U.S. Senate confirmed Mary Jo White today as the next Chairman of the SEC by unanimous consent.

“Chairman White faces two historic and consequential challenges:  enforcing the law on Wall Street without fear or favor and thoroughly putting real financial reform into place.  Both are essential if the SEC is going to protect the American people from another devastating financial collapse and the economic wreckage it causes,” said Dennis Kelleher, President of Better Markets, Inc., an independent nonprofit organization that promotes the public interest in the financial markets.

“Unfortunately, the recent record of the SEC has been to establish a double standard where the law is aggressively enforced on Main Street and the wealthy and well-connected of Wall Street get away with meaningless slaps on the wrist.  This SEC practice only rewards, incentivizes and guarantees more crime on Wall Street.  That must end,” Mr. Kelleher said.

“Similarly, financial reform has languished at the SEC as Wall Street’s lawyers, lobbyists and other allies have attacked the agency relentlessly.  While financial reform hasn’t been stopped entirely, the rules have too often been gutted or weakened by loopholes.  That too must stop,” said Mr. Kelleher.

“Talk is cheap and talk during the Senate confirmation process is often forgotten the next day.  That won’t happen here.  Better Markets has launched an ‘SEC Watch’ webpage, which is going to track what Chairman White says and what the SEC does under her leadership.  We intend to shine a bright spotlight on the SEC for the American people to judge for themselves:  did she do what she said she was going to do or not?   Over time, this webpage will reveal which side Mary Jo White is on,” Mr. Kelleher concluded. 

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