Geithner Not Sure Wall Street's Learned its Lesson

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner sits down for an interview with "Early Show" co-anchor Harry Smith, April 21, 2010.
CBS
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner sits down for an interview with "Early Show" co-anchor Harry Smith, April 21, 2010.
CBS

More than a year after Wall Street's financial crisis crippled the nation's economy, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner doesn't think all the firms involved have learned their lesson.

"I don't know if they all have. It's been a searing experience, not just for the country but for anybody in that business," Geithner told "Early Show" co-anchor Harry Smith, adding that the financial community can't expect future government bailouts.

Geithner: Financial Reform "Absolutely" in Cards

"We're still living with the same system that gave us this crisis, but in some ways it's worse than that because ... we had to do extraordinary things, deeply offensive things, to protect the economy from the mistakes that the financial sector made. And we cannot let them live in the future with the expectation that we're gonna step in again and protect them in the future. We can't do that. And so that's why reform is so important."

Geithner said he was optimistic that Congress would pass a financial reform package that would allow the government to limit the risky behavior that led to the crisis and safely wind down failing firms without using taxpayer money.

Senate Republican leaders, who initially voiced opposition to the Obama administration's reform efforts, said Tuesday that the two parties were making progress toward a bipartisan bill.