James Rowley and Brian Faler
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Sept. 17 (Bloomberg) — The U.S. Congress is unlikely to pass new legislation to overhaul financial regulations this year because “no one knows what to do,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said today.
“We are in new territory. This is a different game,” Reid said at a briefing in Washington. Neither Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke nor Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson “know what to do but they are trying to come up with ideas,” Reid said.
Bernanke, speaking to lawmakers last night, called for a review of government regulations to address the current financial crisis, according to those who attended the meeting. Bernanke and Paulson met with lawmakers to describe the Fed’s plans to take over American International Group Inc.
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White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said today the Bush administration is willing to consider a suggestion in Congress to have the U.S. buy distressed mortgages, akin to the role the Resolution Trust Corp. played in disposing of bad debts of savings and loan associations in the late 1980s and early 1990s.