Was Oxley aware, his questioners asked, that the law that he and Senator Paul Sarbanes, a Maryland Democrat, rushed onto the books five years ago after the collapse of Enron and WorldCom had contributed to a sharp decline in listings on U.S. stock exchanges? And, knowing what he knows now about the cost and effects of the law, would Oxley — who retired in January after 25 years in Congress — have done it any differently?
"Absolutely," Oxley answered. "Frankly, I would have written it differently, and he would have written it differently," he added, referring to Sarbanes. "But it was not normal times."
Professor Marc Hodak, commenting on Bainbridge's site, noted that he had recently given a presentation to international executives: "There I claimed that the only two people left who did not think SOX was a debacle were named Mr. Sarbanes and Mr. Oxley. I guess I have to modify that portion of my talk!"