Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif. (Photo: Bloomberg) Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif. (Photo: Bloomberg)

House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters, D-Calif., stated on the House floor Wednesday that the current government shutdown is “jeopardizing the integrity” of the U.S. markets and hindering the Securities and Exchange Commission’s ability to “hold bad actors accountable.”

Waters made her statement on the House floor in support of H.R. 264, the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Act of 2019, which would restore funding for federal government agencies, and allocate $1.6 billion to the SEC.

“This President has all but closed the doors of the SEC, furloughing 94% of the agency and essentially providing fraudsters and schemers with a free pass to swindle investors and small businesses,” Waters said in her remarks.

“With such a skeleton crew of less than 300 staff, the SEC cannot possibly oversee the activities of the over 26,000 registered entities, such as investment advisers, broker-dealers, and stock exchanges. Worse, the SEC is unable to hold bad actors accountable through most enforcement actions, preventing harmed investors from obtaining relief,” Waters stated.

The importance of the SEC, Waters continued, “goes beyond ensuring the rule of law. Businesses that are looking to enter the public stock markets may have to delay their Initial Public Offerings because the SEC cannot approve their documents. Businesses seeking guidance from the SEC are left in legal limbo until the SEC can get back to work.”

Waters went on the state that “the Trump shutdown is jeopardizing the integrity of our financial markets and the hard-earned savings of millions of Americans.”

President Trump tweeted Wednesday afternoon that his meeting with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., was a “waste of time,” as Pelosi said no to a border wall.

Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., ranking member on the House Financial Services Committee, stated in his floor remarks that the appropriations bills are “dead on arrival,” as they will not be taken up by the Senate or signed into law by the President, “falling short of accomplishing Republican’s number one goal, which is reopening the government and addressing the critical border security needs of our country.”