Thursday, July 19, 2012

Poll: Voters Overwhemingly Favor Financial Reform Laws

Lake Research Partners released the results of an opinion poll showing that financial reforms enacted in recent years remain popular with potential voters.

In light of events leading to 2008’s financial meltdown, potential voters seem to overwhelmingly favor financial reform laws designed to prevent abuse. Nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of respondents favor the Dodd-Frank financial reforms, while only 20 percent expressed disagreement. The support for Dodd-Frank crosses party lines-Republicans were found in favor by a 20-point margin, while Independents and Democrats supported the law by margins of 50 and 83 points, respectively.

When asked about states’ rights, two-thirds of voters said they support a state’s right to pass and enforce strong consumer protections and to prevent federal law from overriding any regulations.

The majority (60 percent) of voters actually expressed favor for more government oversight, while 73 percent support tougher rules and enforcement.

“This poll shows that American voters broadly and strongly support ball Wall Street reform and the CFPB,” said David Mermin, pollster and partner at Lake Research. “And they strongly favor specific components of the CFPB. After hearing arguments in support and in opposition, voters across party lines solidly favor the reform law.”

Among other findings: More than nine in 10 (93 percent) of respondents expressed favor for the policy that established more mortgage and foreclosure protections for service members; almost the same percentage (92 percent) favor a policy that requires banks, mortgage lenders, credit card companies, and student loan and auto lenders to provide clearer explanations of rates, terms, and fees.

In addition, two-thirds of voters agreed that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is a necessary entity. When asked whether or not companies under review by CFPB should be allowed to operate without the bureau’s oversight, 63 percent of respondents said CFPB should remain in charge.

The opinion poll was commissioned by AARP, the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL), Americans for Financial Reform (AFR), and the National Council of La Raza (NCLR). CRL director of federal policy Gary Kalman said the results didn’t shock him in the least.

“Bipartisan support among voters should be no surprise: Who hasn’t been hurt by the economic downturn? People get that common sense oversight could have prevented it,” he said.

By: Tory Barringer 07/18/2012

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