Cantwell waves goodbye to her support from the financial industry.
While running for reelection in 2006, Senator Maria Cantwell's campaign received a $35,600 boost thanks to Goldman Sachs employees, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. In fact, having donated $51,550 over the course of her career, Goldman Sachs staff represent her 10th largest source of contributions.
But she's since been at war with her one-time source of campaign funds. In fact, she was so committed to the cause of reining in investment banks like Goldman that she was one of two Democrats, along with Russ Feingold of Wisconsin, to vote against the Senate banking regulation package that finally passed today.
Cantwell wanted an amendment to the bill that would put constraints on the derivatives market. Derivatives are incomprehensibly complicated financial products that, unlike publicly traded stocks, are bought and sold with very little in the way of rules or oversight. The derivatives market is the kind of place one finds bundled up subprime mortgages.
Cantwell opposed the bill because she wanted to add rules that would require all trading in the derivatives market to be done though a clearinghouse where regulators can keep an eye on things.
Without clamping down on the derivatives market, which she says led to the financial meltdown in the first place, "then I don't know what we're doing out here in the context of what brought us to this crisis," Cantwell said on the Senate floor yesterday.
A representative of the bank declined to comment on Cantwell's actions in DC. But even though Cantwell's amendment failed, I'm guessing she might need to look elsewhere for that $35,600 during her 2012 reelection.