Mr. PASCRELL. Mr. Speaker, for 8 years, President Bush's administration looked the other way as Wall Street exploited our financial system and ignored mounting risks. This failure to regulate our markets led to Wall Street gambling with America's livelihood and compromised our families' futures and savings.
Here we go again, making the tough choices that are necessary to bring our economy back from the brink of disaster. This great Nation is suffering the consequences of a period in our history where living beyond our means plagued not only American consumers but also those on Wall Street whose greed compelled them to take indefensible risks. The market failed us. It certainly wasn't a free market. It's beyond a ``minor adjustment.''
Wall Street reform is a critical step as we turn the tide and change not only how we deal with our financial sector but also where we lay to rest 8 years that marked the most fiscally irresponsible period in our Nation's history.
As we rebuild our economy, we must put in place commonsense rules to ensure Wall Street cannot jeopardize our recovery again.