April 26th, 2010
10:34 AM ET
12 years ago

Poll: Two-thirds support stricter financial regulations


 A new ABC News/Washington Post poll released Monday morning indicates 65 percent of the public supports stricter federal regulations on the way banks and other financial institutions conduct their business, with 31 percent opposed. (PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images)

Washington (CNN) - Hours before a showdown in the Senate over the Democrats financial reform legislation, a new national poll indicates that nearly two-thirds of Americans support stricter regulations of banks and Wall Street firms.

According to a ABC News/Washington Post survey released Monday morning, 65 percent of the public supports stricter federal regulations on the way banks and other financial institutions conduct their business, with 31 percent opposed. A majority of people questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll conducted last month also favored greater government regulation of banks and other financial institutions.

Taking a look at some of the provisions in the legislation, the ABC News/Washington Post survey indicates that nearly six in ten back increasing federal oversight of the way banks and other financial companies issue credit cards and make consumer loans, such as mortgages and auto loans. And 53 percent support requiring large banks and other financial companies to put money into a fund that would cover the cost of taking over and breaking up any large financial company that fails and threatens the broader economy; 42 percent are opposed.

But according to the poll, Americans are divided on allowing the federal government to regulate the complex financial instruments known as derivatives, with a large number who seem unfamiliar with the issue. Opinion is split with 43 percent in favor and 41 percent opposed; 17 percent have no opinion.

The public is also split at 48 percent on approval of how President Barack Obama has handled regulation of Wall Street and the big banks, but the public trusts him on this issue more than they do the GOP. The survey indicates that 52 percent think Obama would do a better job handling the issue, with 35 percent saying that they trust congressional Republicans to do a better job.

The ABC News/Washington Post poll was conducted April 22-25, with 1,001 adults questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

Filed under: Financial Reform
soundoff (37 Responses)
  1. Debbie from Arizona

    Who are in the 31% who do not favor financial reform. Could it be folks who made and are still making money off the failure of oversight? I'd be willing to bet they are all Republicans.

    April 26, 2010 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  2. Anonymous

    this is a joke you mean to tell me that 65 percent of the public are
    in favor of reform were was everyone at when this problem happen
    were they out to lunch or are they just voting on party lines no matter
    what happens to there money

    April 26, 2010 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  3. government takeover vs. big banks

    I am 200% in support of tougher restrictions for Wall Street.

    It's the republican way to give banks more freedom to do whatever they want, but it also gives them more corruption. How dare they make trillions from throwing people out of their homes!!!!!

    I'd rather the government does its job and watches these companies so we don't end up with giving another bailout.

    Of course, the GOP likes their banks big and powerful-

    April 26, 2010 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  4. Patrick

    During the health care debate, republicans kept saying that the President was arrogant, stubborn for not paying attention to the polls that suggested that majority of Americans were not for his reform.
    Now, two- thirds of the American people, according to the latest polls, are for tougher financial reforms, and the republicans are trying to block it.
    What is wrong with this picture?

    April 26, 2010 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  5. No More Incumbents

    Then 2/3 of the people you surveyed are idiots. Do you really think anyone in the Government is capabale and can be TRUSTED to craft this additional legislation? The SEC couldn't find any problems with Madoff even though they were tipped off 5 times. Look at Dodd, Frank, Rangel, etc. They all broke the existing law and they are still in power. We should trust these guys when they are "protecting" us?

    How about if we get our government to enforce the laws that are on the books now? Oh wait, then 1/2 of Washington will get locked up under the RICO laws, and the rest for impersonating a public servant.

    Exercise your rights. Vote them all out in November!

    April 26, 2010 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  6. Anonymous

    Where are the cries fromthe Republicans that poeple WANT this? They sure made enough noise on healthcare after giving out so much misinformaiton that people turned agaist the bill, so where's the noise this time?
    More importnatly, where's the support?

    April 26, 2010 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  7. Dano

    With almost 2/3 of the country supporting financial reform, you'd think the GOP would be all over this issue, but as usual they're doing everything in their power to slow down this badly needed legislation. It make you wonder whose best interest they're working for, doesn't it?

    April 26, 2010 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  8. Kathy Corey

    We need comprehensive regulatory reform:

    This includes Fannie and Freddie. They were given a blank check in December.

    We do not need another government agency. We need to make the ones we have do their job. If they can't do their jobs abolish them. The SEC is an embarrassment. If people are not doing their jobs they should be fired.

    April 26, 2010 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  9. usualone

    Interesting that people want government in their lives in this regard. Strange how they say we have too much government. I hope the Republicans are listening ("betcha" they are not).

    April 26, 2010 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  10. Albert R. Killackey, Deregulated corporations are not the solution to our problem, they ARE our problem!

    After three decades of Reagan’s “Get government off of our backs” deregulation of global corporations and banks, as well as tax cuts tax-cuts for the rich and well connected institutions, as America’s middle-class wealth is evaporating into the global corporate economy, while the worlds tallest buildings are built in Arab nations, the fastest trains are built in Europe and Asia and the wind turbines and car battery packs of the Green Revolution are built outside America by workers who have had universal health care for decades, and as American farmers and small merchants are controlled by a few global corporations (not to mention pollution, global warming) America has finally figured out that deregulated corporations are not the solution to our problem, they ARE our problem!

    April 26, 2010 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  11. Patrick

    Ah! I think I got it!
    Republicans just want to delay the whole process; but they will vote for it later. They want to delay it so that it will take up a lot of time, prevent the President and the Democrats from achieving a lot by going onto the next agenda – Immigration, climate change, energy, jobs, etc. Remember, if the health care was completed in August ‘09 as the President had wanted, by November ‘09 congress would have passed a bill on Jobs, and then by now they might have been wrapping up on immigration. Otherwise how can you be so close and yet so far: “Shelby said he and Sen. Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.), chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, are "conceptually very close" to a deal on the pending bill but that Shelby is pushing to "tighten up some language."
    All this time they couldn’t tighten up the language! Are you kidding me? These people are just fleecing American’s tax dollars, pretending to be working.

    April 26, 2010 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  12. Mark from Louisiana

    why aren't fannie mae and freddie mac covered under these new regulations, it was their policies that led to the housing market collapse.
    Ohh I remember those two companies are favorites of the dems because they make home loans to the folks who can't afford them.

    April 26, 2010 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
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