William Phillip Gramm
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Mr. Gramm
Political Party: Democratic Party (1978–1983)

Republican (1983–present)

Education: University of Georgia
Religion Episcopalian
Born July 8, 1942

William Philip "Phil" Gramm (born July 8, 1942, in Fort Benning, Georgia, USA) is an American politician and lobbyist who served as a Democratic Congressman (1978–1983), a Republican Congressman (1983–1985) and a Republican Senator from Texas (1985–2002).

He stands as a perfect example of a conservative. He betrayed the Democrats by sharing their strategy, to help pass President Ronald Reagan's budget. Next, after they discovered this and stripped him of his his position on the committee, he switched parties to Republican.

In 1990 Gramm made a failed effort to amend the Iraq International Law Compliance Act of 1990. This amendment prohibited the US from selling arms or extending any sort of financial assistance to Iraq unless the President could prove Iraq was in “substantial compliance” with the provisions of a number of human rights conventions, including the genocide convention. In the end the bill passed the senate without Gramm's amendment only a week before Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait.

21st Century

Gramm was one of five co-sponsors of the Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000. One provision of the bill was referred to as the "Enron loophole" because Gramm drafted it in cooperation with lobbyists for Enron Corporation. Critics blame the provision for permitting the Enron scandal to occur. At the time, Gramm's wife was on Enron's board of directors.

Beyond Enron, the Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000 was a key reason for the 2007-2008 Subprime / Housing / Mortage / Banking disaster. Stating the Act would "protect financial institutions from overregulation", his actions left the credit default swaps, which are behind the subprime mess, totally unregulated.

Now, having been a major player responsible for the mess, he added insult to injury when he claimed that those who state that economic conditions were not in good shape were "whiners":

"We have sort of become a nation of whiners," he said. "You just hear this constant whining, complaining about a loss of competitiveness, America in decline."

I guess Gramm having millions of Enron dollars (his wife's Enron salary and stock income brought between $915,000 and $1.8 million into the Gramm household) plus a generous taxpayer funded congressional pension plan, along with his years of taxpayer funded salary, and pay as a lobbyist for a Swiss bank at the center of the housing credit crisis, would feel that if he complained it would be whining. But wait, he wasn't talking about his complaining...


He was John McCain’s presidential campaign co-chair and his most senior economic adviser, until he stepped down on July 18, 2008, after making the "nation of whiners" comments.