Thursday, October 9, 2008

Congressman Brad Sherman: Martial Law if We Voted No

October 2, 2008, U.S. House of Representatives. Congressman Brad Sherman [D-CA] asks:

"But why are we bailing out the Bank of China? Why are we bailing out the Saudi royal family?...

The only way they can pass this bill is by creating and by sustaining a panic atmosphere...

A few Members were even told that there would be martial law in America if we voted ``no.''

TRANSCRIPT

I thank the Chair. I have got 30 minutes, and I will share some with the gentlelady from Ohio in just a second to describe the flaws with this bill. Believe it or not, 30 minutes is not long enough. But first I want to mention about the calls that are coming into our office.

The calls used to be from people around the country. Now Wall Street firms have their employees unplugging those headsets to call investors and instead calling Members of Congress. So now the calls coming in to at least my office have shifted from 20-1 against this bailout package for Wall Street, down to about 3-1 or 4-1 against this bailout.

I ask my colleagues not to be confused. Edit out some of those calls that are coming to you from folks who are being paid to make the call, and you will realize the country remains absolutely overwhelmingly opposed to this Wall Street bailout bill.

I thank again the gentleman from Ohio, and I will make a few more points.

We had a meeting of the Skeptics Caucus, which is now a bipartisan Skeptics Caucus, where we heard from Bill Isaac. Mr. Isaac was Chair of the FDIC (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation), having first been appointed to that board by President Carter and then appointed by Reagan. You don't find very many people who have support on both sides of the aisle like that.

Bill Isaac led the FDIC in solving the 1981 crisis, which was probably worse than the crisis that we have now. He used the emergency powers of the FDIC. He was able to solve that credit crisis without significant cost to the taxpayer.

We ought to hear from Bill Isaac. And I look forward to us defeating this bill tomorrow so we can have hearings and all my colleagues, not just those who came to the Skeptics Caucus, can hear from Mr. Isaac and so many others, because the starting point is this testimony that we didn't hear before any hearing, because there have been no hearings on this bill, but rather a letter sent to Members of Congress by hundreds of eminent economists, including three Nobel Laureates. And they said, we ask Congress not to rush, to hold appropriate hearings, and to carefully consider the right course of action.

(...) http://www.c-spanarchives.org/congress/?q=node/77531&id=8902074

The only way they can pass this bill is by creating and by sustaining a panic atmosphere.

That atmosphere is not justified. Many of us were told in private conversations, if we voted against this bill, that, on Monday, the sky would fall and that the market would drop 2,000 or 3,000 points the first day and another 2,000 the second day.

A few Members were even told that there would be martial law in America if we voted ``no.''

http://www.c-spanarchives.org/congress/?q=node/77531&id=8902076

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