WASHINGTON – Newt Gingrich blasted the financial services bill now before Congress here at the annual meeting of the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting.
Former House Speaker Gingrich, a Republican from Georgia, talked about the financial services bill Monday during the AALU meeting’s opening general session.
The financial reform legislation Congress is considering will add an unnecessary layer of bureaucracy and additional costs to the existing regulatory structure, ensuring that the next bank meltdown will be even more expensive the last one, Gingrich said.
Gingrich faulted both Democrats and Republicans for their handling of the credit crisis, saying that both Henry Paulson, the Treasury secretary of former President Bush, and Timothy Geithner, the current Treasury secretary, are “New York insiders taking care of New York insiders.”
But Gingrich talked mainly about the “cultural conversation about the kind of country we are” that he believes is now under way.
“This is not a Democratic or Republican issue,” Gingrich said. “This is an old order versus new world kind of issue, which has resulted because of a breakdown in systems that arose after World War II.”
The challenges that will force the United States to restructure are an “explosion” in science and technology; rising competition from developing nations; and a government “bubble,” Gingrich said.
Contributing to government crises will be budget-straining pension and health care obligations, created in part by public-sector unions, Gingrich said.