Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) introduced H.R. 384—his medicine for the Troubled Asset Relief Program—on January 9; the bill was approved by a 260-166 margin on January 21. That’s something approaching the speed of light for Congressional action. One hitch: the Senate has no plans to consider the bill.

The Senate’s public disinterest does not make H.R. 384 irrelevant, however.  The TARP Reform and Accountability Act instead is regarded as a guide to how the two-week-old Obama administration may structure the remainder of TARP money recently released by the Senate. H.R. 384 would provide at least $100 billion to homeowners facing foreclosure, provide a big chunk to mandated lending, and handcuff executive compensation to some extent.

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