There are changes that can be made to Dodd-Frank, but President-elect Donald Trump and Republicans are being inconsistent when they talk about dismantling the law, one of its co-sponsors, Barney Frank, told CNBC on Monday.
"The Republican platform went far beyond what we did by saying they want to reintroduce Glass-Steagall, which would disorganize the banks a lot more than we did, for good or for ill," said the Democratic former congressman, referencing the Depression-era legislation that was designed to prevent big bank "supermarkets."
"[Trump] also has said during the campaign that he doesn't like the big banks and he's going to go after them."
Trump's transition website calls Dodd-Frank "a sprawling and complex piece of legislation that has unleashed hundreds of new rules and several new bureaucratic agencies" and promises to dismantle and replace it with "new policies to encourage economic growth and job creation."
Frank defended the law that bears his name, noting that one major piece of the bill doesn't allow banks to engage in complex derivative transactions if they don't have the money to pay off their bets.
"Maybe Mr. Trump thinks that we should remove that. I don't think that would either be wise or very popular," Frank said in an interview with "Closing Bell."
The law also prohibits banks from lending money to people to buy homes they can't afford, he pointed out.
"If he wants to have a national debate about whether we should go back to mortgages to people who can't repay them and then securities based on those bad mortgages, I welcome it," he said.
— Reuters contributed to this report.