Fox News obscured the fact that Republican lawmakers are holding renewal of a terrorism insurance program hostage in order to continue chipping away at financial regulatory reform.
The Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA), first passed after 9/11 and subsequently renewed by Congress, allows the federal government to aid insurance companies in providing terrorism insurance to businesses. One of the biggest beneficiaries of TRIA are professional sports organizations like the NFL.
If TRIA is not renewed, these organizations could lose terrorism insurance coverage. Thus on the December 15 edition of Fox & Friends First, Fox Business contributor Lauren Simonetti claimed that the Super Bowl may be in danger of cancelation. According to Simonetti, “The reason is Congress,” adding “unless this act is reauthorized by the end of the year,” the Super Bowl could be canceled:
The network failed to acknowledge that Republicans' commitment to unraveling away portions of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law are to blame for holding up TRIA's reauthorization. As ABC News reported, rather than holding a vote on the Senate's bipartisan bill to reauthorize TRIA, on Dec. 10 the House passed a different measure which included a GOP provision that undermines financial reform:
The Senate passed its own bipartisan bill to reauthorize TRIA in the summer, but the House passed a different measure last week that funds the program for six years and includes a provision that rolls back some limits placed on Wall Street banks in the Dodd-Frank reform bill.
That House measure faces an up-hill battle in the Senate this week as a few Senate Democrats oppose the inclusion of the Dodd-Frank language. On the Republican side, retiring Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., has threatened to prevent the bill from coming up for a vote.
“There may not be any TRIA until January, the next Congress. I'm OK with that,” Coburn said, according to National Journal. “Quite frankly, I don't care whether TRIA happens or not. Because I believe that markets will fill in that void.”
As National Journal explained, House Republicans' rider in the TRIA renewal “would clarify or change a provision in the Dodd-Frank law to free nonfinancial companies, like those involved in agriculture or energy, from having to comply with the same collateral and other rules for swaps in the derivative markets that are applied to banks.”
Democrats in both the House and the Senate have expressed outrage over the inclusion of financial reform rollbacks in the terrorism-risk bill. The Super Bowl, however, seems to be safe. The NFL has already stated that the Super Bowl will be played no matter the outcome of the TRIA reauthorization.