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From AAJ: Report blames U.S. Chamber for Financial Crisis

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From the American Association for Justice pressroom:

Washington, DC – The current financial crisis was caused by U.S. Chamber’s aggressive lobbying to eliminate accountability and oversight, says a new issue brief that also exposes payments from bailed-out AIG to the Washington corporate lobby.

Today, U.S. Chamber is the loudest supporter of a $700 billion taxpayer bailout, even though it spent the last decade fighting to eliminate corporate accountability – one of the major factors that led to the current financial crisis.

U.S. Chamber has been paid millions by large corporations to limit the rights of shareholders, roll back Sarbanes-Oxley reforms, prevent disclosures to investors, and protect boardrooms while preventing consumers from holding them accountable.

The issue brief also details payments from American International Group (AIG) to U.S. Chamber totaling $23 million from 2001 to 2005. AIG, coined by one commentator as “the new Enron,” was represented by U.S. Chamber while engaging in massive corporate fraud before receiving a government bailout this month.

“U.S. Chamber has sought to destroy any check on corporate excess, accountability and greed," said American Association for Justice CEO Jon Haber. "By conducting the dirty work of Enron, Exxon, AIG, and a host of other negligent corporations, U.S. Chamber has put countless Americans in financial jeopardy."

The issue brief summarizes a small selection of U.S. Chamber lobbying and litigation that has put Wall Street ahead of Main Street and corporations above everyday Americans. To read “Behind the Bailout: How U.S. Chamber Created the 2008 Financial Crisis,” visit: http://www.justice.org/pdf/uschamberbehindthebailout.pdf.