Re: “Barney Frank: Don’t let Republicans undermine regulations” (Nov. 30): Regulations will keep Wall Street in check – most specifically, regulations of derivatives.

It was Wall Street’s wild gambling, motivated by bonuses in the millions and even tens of millions, that brought on the 2008 recession. Some 8 million Americans lost their jobs, and additional millions saw their home values dramatically decline.

President Obama, Rep. Barney Frank and Sen. Chris Dodd pushed for commonsense controls that would protect the public, but the Democratic Party was fought at every step by Republican leaders as well as the rank and file. The reason was simple: political money from Wall Street.

As Dodd-Frank was being debated in the Senate, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell – soon to be majority leader – was secretly meeting on Wall Street to discuss blocking the bill and to solicit Wall Street funds.

McConnell and other Republicans did not block the bill but were successful in becoming Wall Street’s favorite party. Within a few years, two-thirds of all Wall Street campaign donations were going to Republicans.

Sen. McConnell and Wall Street are meant for each other. McConnell is the strongest congressional opponent of any restrictions on campaign donations.

In 2012, after the Supreme Court’s Citizens United ruling, McConnell led Senate Republicans in voting against making corporate donations of over $10,000 known to the public. The political money could now be both unlimited and secret. And one more blow was struck against democracy.

Frank correctly points out that Republican leaders may not directly try to dismantle the desperately needed regulation of Wall Street. Rather, they will attempt to defund regulatory agencies, making them so weak that they simply can’t do the job. And if this does happen, Wall Street gambling will continue as it has – until, of course, the U.S. suffers another, and likely worse, recession.

Fred Rotondaro

Southport