Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Elections Matter

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Elections Matter

Article excerpt

This is the busy season for members of Congress. By the end of June, most states will have held their primary elections, and state party nominating conventions will have selected their candidates. The stage is being set for the 2014 elections.

With this election, as with every election, the political environment in which we operate will change--and it could make a big difference for your bank.

That's why we need to make this the busy season for bankers. In banking as in politics, elections matter. They are a tailor-made opportunity for us to support or oppose candidates based on their actions and their attitudes about our industry.

If you need motivation, consider this: The Dodd-Frank Act alone has added more than 7,000 pages of new rules and requirements to banking regulations, with more to come. No, we can't repeal Dodd-Frank. But we can create a more favorable political environment for banking if we help elect candidates who get it--who understand that our banks directly affect the economic well-being of their constituents.

For us, that's what this election is all about. Legislation and regulation that too often are headed in the wrong direction are raising our compliance costs, and making it more difficult for us to serve our customers. Every dollar we spend on compliance means $10 less we can lend to creditworthy borrowers. Less credit means businesses--especially small businesses--can't grow and create new jobs. …

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