SEC Officials Can't Find Their Own Backsides: Lawmaker

Natalie Erlich|Writer/Producer
Wednesday, 4 Feb 2009 | 3:41 PM ET
Ackerman's Attack on SEC
Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-NY) lets SEC officials know what he thinks about their lack of oversight in the alleged Madoff Ponzi scheme.

Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-N.Y.) attacked SEC officials testifying before the House Financial Services committee for failing to detect Bernie Madoff’s $50 billion Ponzi scheme on Wednesday.

“What the heck went on? Your mission, you said, was to protect investors and detect fraud quickly,” he said. “You couldn’t find your backside with two hands if the lights were on.”

He also said the SEC panel was accountable for damaging the American public’s trust in the financial system.

“I’m reflecting what the American public feels,” he said. “How are they supposed to have confidence that if somebody goes to you with a complaint—gives it to you on a silver platter with all the investigations, with all the numbers, with all of the data, telling you exactly what he did, why he did it and how he knows that—and after a period after half a dozen or eight years, you don’t know anything?”

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