OK, Obama, Now Can We Get Tough on Wall Street?

His 2nd term is a chance to do it right: William Cohan
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 12, 2012 12:55 PM CST
OK, Obama, Now Can We Get Tough on Wall Street?
In this Oct. 5, 2011 file photo, Occupy Wall Street protesters join a labor union rally in Foley Square before marching on Zuccotti Park in New York's Financial District.   (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)

Back when President Obama took office in 2009, many assumed he'd reform the Wall Street system that had just blown a hole in the economy. "It turned out we were either naïve or stupid," author William Cohan writes at Bloomberg. Instead, Obama's administration was stocked with protégés of Robert Rubin, Wall Street denizens like Tim Geithner, Larry Summers, and Peter Orszag, who put in place "a remarkably Wall Street-friendly set of policies." Now, he's got a second term—and a chance to do it right.

Cohan suggests Obama replace Rubin's crew with a reform-minded one including Erskine Bowles as Treasury secretary, Harvard economist Carmen Reinhart as national economic adviser, and Eliot Spitzer as SEC head—yes, that Eliot Spitzer. "I'm not joking. Having prosecuted Wall Street misdeeds as New York attorney general … he knows where the bodies are buried and won’t be afraid to dig them up." That team would help convince us Obama was serious on election night when he said, "You voted for action, not politics as usual." Click for the entire column. (More Barack Obama stories.)

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