Tim Johnson Watch

Representative Tim Johnson was elected to represent the residents of Illinois' 15th Congressional District in Central Illinois. His constituents should know what he's doing.

Location: 15th Congressional District, Illinois, United States

A concerned citizen of Central Illinois.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

Tim Johnson Sells Out Constituents To Credit Card Companies

On Thursday, Tim Johnson voted for the bankruptcy "reform" bill, which makes it much harder for people to obtain bankruptcy protection, a huge gift to the credit card industry at the expense of ordinary citizens. There are no credit card companies in this district, but there are lots of ordinary people that may be one medical crisis away from bankruptcy.

Why would Tim Johnson vote for credit card companies over his constituents? Maybe he's just following Tom DeLay's orders (more on the DeLay connection later). Maybe's its the vast amount of corporate cash he receives, including substantial amounts from the banking industry ($5,000 from Bank-PAC, $10,500 from J.P. Morgan Chase's PAC, $4,500 from HSBC's (Hong Kong Shanghai Bank) PAC, and thousands more from various "community banking" PACs).

As Harvard's Elizabeth Warren explains, this is not a liberal-conservative issue. It's an issue of whether Congress is for sale:
Even after the horse race was over and it was clear the bill would pass, the press continued to write about the bankruptcy bill—and the stories weren’t pretty. The politicians who thought this would be a free vote discovered they were wrong. The middle class is beginning to rumble, and those rumbles will change things.

I’m also glad to see the old conservative-liberal dichotomy break down over bankruptcy. Both conservative and liberal bloggers exposed the rotten foundations of this bill, particularly the imperfect credit markets and the influence of money on politics.
We need a representative who is not for sale.


Anonymous Luke said...

Again, 73 Democrats voted for this bill. Any bill that can get over 300 votes can't be that bad.

New Democratic Congresswoman Melissa Bean from the 8th District of Illinois also voted for this bill. She also happened to receive $5000 from JP Morgan Chase in just the few months that she has been in office. Does that mean that she is for sale as well? If so, that would be great news for Republicans. Some consider Bean to be the number one target in the nation next year...

1:09 AM  
Blogger Michael said...


While the bankruptcy bill was clearly a Republican initiative, this is not purely a partisan issue. That was the point of quoting Professor Warren that "the old conservative-liberal dichotomy [is] break[ing] down over" this bill. Melissa Bean will have defend her vote with her constituents, and Tim Johnson will have to defend his with his. (I will note, though, that Johnson's constituents are more likely to be harmed by the new law than Bean's given that this district has mean incomes and home values below the national average while in Bean's district both figures are approximately 50% above the national average.)

12:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From reading your past comments, seems to me like your a little scared of this blog and the possibility that it might shed some light on Tim Johnson's drug-hungry (have you seen recent photos? he looks like he shoots meth!) unethical ways. Keep coming though! Your posts make us laugh and maybe, will draw more people to the blog!

9:14 AM  
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