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By Joe Sacco

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CNBC Hosts Try to School Sen. Warren on Financial Regulations, Fail Miserably

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Posted on Jul 17, 2013

Some smug CNBC hosts learned the hard way that it’s never—repeat never—a good idea to argue with Sen. Elizabeth Warren over financial regulatory issues, especially on legislation that she herself has proposed.

During an appearance on “Squawk Box” on Friday, the Massachusetts Democrat made her point—yes, government regulation does work—by detailing the history of government financial regulations, noting that the number of banks that failed in the 50 years that followed the passage of the original Glass-Steagall Act was zero. Warren and three other senators, including Arizona Republican John McCain, introduced new Glass-Steagall legislation last week in an effort to break up the big banks that caused the economy to collapse five years ago.

“You are not going to defend the proposition that regulation can never work,” she admonished anchor Brian Sullivan after he said the opposite. “It did work.”

Perhaps the best parts, however, were at the end when the hosts tried to denigrate Warren’s new legislation by insisting to her that it has virtually no chance of passing. The senator’s response is classic.

“I remember going on television multiple times, including here, when I talked about the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, when the big banks were spending more than a million dollars a day lobbying against it. And when everyone told me, ‘You’ll never get that thing through, why are you even trying?’ The chances of passing it are slim to none.’ And yet look around. We now have a good strong Consumer Financial Protection Bureau,” she said. “We got that agency because we fought for it. I actually believe in that.”


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Let that be a lesson for TV personalities looking to challenge her in the future: Don’t mess with Elizabeth Warren.

—Posted by Tracy Bloom.

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