Republican Lawmaker Opposes SEC Cuts

Mar 18 2011 | 12:33pm ET

Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary Schapiro's pleas for more funding have found at least one receptive Republican ear on Capitol Hill.

Rep. Jo Ann Emerson (R-Mo.) broke ranks with her party this week, opposing deep cuts in the SEC budget. While Emerson did not go so far as to back Schapiro's call for a $260 million increase in the agency's budget, she did say she was skeptical of her own party's plans to slash about $200 million from its budget.

"My recommendation would be to probably not take them back to 2008 levels," Emerson said, referring to a GOP plan that would cut all federal agencies to their budgets of three years ago. "They've got a big mission and they need the tools to do their job."

Emerson's support could be key, although she warned that her words were merely her "personal opinion." The Missouri congresswoman is the chairwoman of the House of Representatives Appropriations Subcommittee that sets agency funding levels.

"Let's just say I think [Schapiro] makes a good case and I hope my colleagues can make a good case that at least 2008 levels is too drastic for the SEC," Emerson said.

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