COMMENTS: Finance Fallout Leads Yet Again

There were two main follow-up angles to Monday's defeat of the Treasury Department's $700bn plan to bail out finance capitalism from its debt crisis. ABC and CBS led with the fallout in the financial markets, where stock prices rebounded but short-term interest rates skyrocketed. NBC led from Capitol Hill, where negotiators set about amending the plan in order to attract the missing 13 votes in the House of Representatives that accounted for its defeat. Combined, the two angles qualified the financial crisis as the network newscasts' Story of the Day for the eighth weekday in a row.

NBC's Tom Costello saw himself rubbernecking at the "train wreck at the intersection of politics and Wall Street" as he kept track of the trial balloons floating through the halls of Congress. Accounting rules may be changed to keep bad loans secret. Federal insurance may be raised to allow banks to take larger deposits. Democrats want more unemployment benefits. Republicans want more tax cuts for investors "There is a lot of talk here," he declared. The balancing act, explained ABC's Jake Tapper, consisted of "trying to introduce provisions that will attract Republicans without alienating Democrats--and vice versa." CBS' Bob Orr reported that the "credit crisis is keeping pressure on the Congress to act right now even with the election just five weeks away."

ABC's Tapper noted that popular opposition to the $700bn bailout--Tapper suggested that "rescue" might have been a more palatable label--is so intense that volume on the Write Your Representative feature "threatened to bring down the entire House of Representatives' Website. Computer technicians had to limit the number of people who could use the feature just so the whole system does not come crashing down."


You must be logged in to this website to leave a comment. Please click here to log in so you can participate in the discussion.