In a letter to Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd and House Banking Chairman Barney Frank, Sen. Scott Brown (R) said he will not vote for the financial regulatory reform bill because it contains a $19 billion assessment on big banks. Brown says that amounts to "higher taxes."
"This tax was not in the Senate version of the bill, which I supported. If the final version of this bill contains these higher taxes, I will not support it," he writes.
"It is especially troubling that this provision was inserted in the conference report in the dead of night without hearings or economic analysis. While some will try to argue this isn't a tax, this new provision takes real money away from the economy, making it unavailable for lending on Main Street, and gives it to Washington. That sounds like a tax to me."
When asked if Brown would also vote with Republicans to maintain the filibuster on the legislation -- thereby depriving Democrats of the 60 votes needed to advance the bill to the final vote -- his spokeswoman referred us back a line in his letter: "If the final version of this bill contains these higher taxes, I will not support it."