Today, the House of Representatives "approved the most sweeping overhaul of the nation's financial regulatory system since the Great Depression," according to the Washington Post. The NY Times reports the vote, which was 223-202, created the Consumer Financial Protection Agency which would oversee lending, "establishes new rules for transactions that contributed to the meltdown, and seeks to reduce the threat that one or two huge companies on the verge of collapse could bring down the economy."
Nearly all Republican Congressional members opposed the bill, saying it would restrict credit and hurt businesses, and said that there was no mechanism to dissolve too-big-too fail firms. Representative Spencer Bachus (R-Alabama) said, "If bankruptcy is good enough for American citizens, if it is good enough for small businesses, if it is good enough for 99.9 percent of American corporations, it ought to be good for the largest, ‘too-big-to-fail’ institutions." Democrats rejected the Republicans' proposal to have judges reset mortgage terms.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, "We are sending a clear message to Wall Street: The party is over." And Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said, "Passage of this bill moves us an important step closer to meeting the president’s objectives for reform. Comprehensive reform must establish clear rules of the road with strong enforcement for our nation’s financial institutions and markets." The bill is headed to the Senate; it's unclear what the prospects are there, because the Senate has its own plan (of course).