This is pretty incredible, even for Blanche Lincoln.
Never mind that she’s using all kind of liberal imagery (Salon, Rachel Maddow, the New York Times) in the ad, never mind that she’s taking credit for shepherding the ENTIRE BILL (I’m sure Chris Dodd might have a word or two to say about that) and not just her piece from the Ag Committee, but the overall premise of the ad is simply absurd. We’ve been over this before, but I’ll lay it out again:
• When Lincoln announced her derivatives title, she was working on a weaker one with Saxby Chambliss. Asked to defend it in a Democratic caucus, she couldn’t, and had to be bailed out by Maria Cantwell.
• When Cantwell discovered a loophole in the title that de-fangs the whole thing by offering no penalty for enforcement or illegality for uncleared swaps, Lincoln said nothing and didn’t back up Cantwell, who voted against cloture.
• While the whole world continues to say that the most controversial part of the title, the spin-off of swaps trading desks away from the big banks, will surely be excised, Lincoln stands mute and merely touts that which will never become law.
• Chris Dodd offered an amendment to kill the trading desk piece the night of Lincoln’s primary election, then pulled it back when it became clear she would face a runoff. The conference committee where the trading desk piece is now most likely to be killed, with Lincoln in the room, starts THE DAY AFTER HER RUNOFF ELECTION.
There aren’t even any lines to read between. The entire derivatives title is a fake. Lincoln has already made that clear by her actions.
Bill Halter responded to this by pointing out that Lincoln voted to repeal Glass-Steagall, and just last week voted against states getting the responsibility to set their own credit card interest rates for their constituents. That’s fine, and so is this ad from AFSCME targeting Lincoln on her entire record over many years. But it’s important to set the record straight on the point in question – Blanche Lincoln can’t explain her own derivatives proposal, chose not to defend it, and won’t stand in the way when it’s watered down. Those are just the facts.