–Stark divide in substance and style–
Looking more and more like a congressional candidate to be reckoned with, Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries answered two Our Time Press questions regarding federal issues while incumbent Ed Towns played coy.
The first question e-mailed to both Towns and Jeffries was: What regulatory legislation over Wall Street and the banking industry would you support and why?
Jeffries responded that Congress is deeply out of touch with the needs of the local community and the rest of the country regarding the growing divide between the rich and the poor.
“Incredibly, the majority in Congress want to repeal the Wall St. reforms championed by President Obama, which are designed to prevent another economic collapse,” said Jeffries.
“If elected, I will fight hard to expand the Community Reinvestment Act and encourage banks to serve traditionally ignored neighborhoods like Bedford-Stuyvesant and East New York,” he added.
Towns’ spokesperson Charles Lewis said Towns is not responding to questions because his focus is on the issues before committees on which he serves.
Lewis did send a link to a four-page written statement by Towns for the Harvard Business Law Review in favor of the Dodd-Frank Act signed into law in July 2010.
The Act includes corporate governance and executive compensation reforms, new registration requirements for hedge fund and private equity fund advisers, heightened regulation of over-the-counter derivatives and asset-backed securities and new rules for credit rating agencies.
The Act also puts some teeth back into the U.S. Federal Securities and Exchange Commission (FCC) – the police of Wall Street.
“Much of Dodd-Frank focuses on creating a framework that will effectively regulate derivatives, credit default swaps and asset-backed securities,” Towns wrote. “The extensive use of these instruments created a complex web of assets that was nearly impossible to untangle.”
The second question was: Do you support the Obama Administration’s growing reliance on drone warfare and why?
Jeffries answered that he generally supports President Obama’s efforts to use new technologies to stop further al-Qaeda attacks on the United States.
“When used appropriately, drone attacks can surgically target the enemy while saving American lives,” said Jeffries.
Towns did not respond to this question.
The two questions come as Jeffries was reported as having $158,940 on hand in the latest campaign finance filings, while Towns had $11,240.
Towns is a fifteen-term incumbent and Lewis said he has every intention of running for reelection.
Jeffries has not officially announced he’s running, but has set up an exploratory committee for a run and has been actively fund-raising.
The 10th Congressional District includes Fort Greene, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brownsville, Mill Basin, Cypress Hills, East New York and Canarsie.