NEW: TAG bill defeated in SenateWASHINGTON (UPDATED: 12:58 p.m. ET, 12/13/12)--Today's defeat of a Transaction Account Guarantee (TAG) extension on a budget point of order is a "death blow" to the legislation and a significant victory for the Credit Union National Association (CUNA), credit unions and state leagues across the country that aggressively opposed this bank bailout program, CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney said.
Just minutes ago, the bill failed to gain the 60 Senate votes needed to move forward for final consideration. The final vote count was 42 to 50.
"This is the first time that credit unions have vigorously opposed bank-backed legislation; it won't be the last time," Cheney emphasized.
The TAG legislation (S. 3637) would have extended unlimited deposit insurance coverage granted during the financial crisis for noninterest bearing transaction accounts. Coverage is set to revert back to $250,000 at year's end without congressional action. The bill has been strongly favored by major bank trade associations.
CUNA has criticized the TAG extension by noting the program already has cost the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. almost $2.5 billion and has provided a guaranteed oasis to the banks of $1.4 trillion.
CUNA and the leagues have urged federal lawmaker not to "expose taxpayers to potentially $1.4 trillion in losses while the banks are making billions again."
"We will be alert for any attempt by banks to attempt to attach this bill to some other year-end legislative package--and will oppose any such effort just as energetically as long as there is no similar treatment for credit union business lending legislation in the same measure."
In the meantime, Cheney said, "credit unions will continue to look for, and seize, any opportunity to include our member business lending legislation in any appropriate end-of-year legislative package."
"Congress will be in session for at least another week and a half--this is not over until it's over," Cheney declared.