Shelby, Dodd Expect Bipartisan Financial Reform January markup possible as fears of a partisan battle fade By Kevin Spak, Newser Staff Posted Dec 24, 2009 9:45 AM CST 9 comments Comments Christopher Dodd whispers to Richard Shelby during a session of the Senate Banking Committee in this file photo. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais) (Newser) – Hoping to avoid a repeat of the health care dogfight, Chris Dodd and Richard Shelby think they’ve made “meaningful progress” on a bipartisan deal on financial regulatory reform. Dodd’s initial solo draft of the bill drew Republican jeers asked top members of his Senate Banking committee to break into bipartisan pairs and work on various aspects of the bill. He’s worked with Shelby, the committee’s ranking Republican. “These talks have been extremely productive,” they said in a joint statement today, reiterating their shared policy goals, which include preventing future bailouts, adding consumer protections, and reining in the Fed. Republicans also now seem willing to compromise on a consumer protection agency, which they’re open to—provided it’s not an independent body. “It’s a question of what does it look like now more than can’t have it at all,” Democrat Robert Mendez tells Politico.