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A coalition of farmers, small business owners and community bankers are pushing a bill for a state bank in Oregon, but they are up against some powerful opposition from one place in particular: Wall Street. Barbara Dudley, a leader in the Oregon campaign to establish a publicly owned bank, speaks in this Nation Conversation about where the movement stands and why it is an important step for the state in providing credit to its citizens.
Dudley emphasizes that for community bankers, a state bank would not compete with them, but strengthen them. It would take the place of big banks and Federal Reserve banks to serve as a backup at a time when participation on the part of Wall Street has dried up.