Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Bankruptcy Bill - squeezing families

I've been following the debate on the bankruptcy bill that Congress is trying to pass -- and apparently will likely succeed in doing so. Today, they voted to cut off debate on this bill by a vote of (Thanks to Talking Points Memo for highlighting the subject).

I don't really know what to say - this bill makes it much harder for folks to file for bankruptcy without providing any protection to those who need it most, including (lifted straight from Washington Monthly, which contains an excellent summary):

Amendments. What amendments have been offered to the bill and then rejected? Here are the main ones, all of which were summarily dismissed by the Republican majority:

  1. From Russ Feingold, an amendment that would have allowed senior citizens to protect $75,000 of the value of their homes during bankruptcy proceedings.

  2. From Ted Kennedy, an amendment focused on helping people who are forced into bankruptcy due to major medical expenses.

  3. Also from Ted Kennedy, an amendment that would have protected $150,000 of the value of patients' homes from being seized to pay creditors.

  4. From Daniel Akaka, an amendment to force credit card companies to disclose how long it would take a consumer to pay off his bill making minimum monthly payments, and what the interest rate would be.

  5. From Dick Durbin, an amendment that would have exempted veterans from the most onerous provisions of the bill and prevented creditors from recovering debts from military personnel if the loans had annual percentage rates higher than 36%.

If stopping abuse were truly your primary goal, why would you vote against amendments like these?

I'm just sad that power & politics are so much more important than the average American.

1 comment:

Urbanpink said...

You are so good to bring attention to this bill of immoral greed. 36% interest?! I hear MBNA owns members of both parties, including Feinstein. What do we do when members of the "people's" party are as crooked as the Greedy Or Paranoid party?