Senate Republicans Block Agency Chief For Credit Task Force
1 year ago
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau struggles with ‘do-little’ GOP
If a scraping sound is heard right now it’s likely the pitch forks of the remaining Occupy Wall Street activists, who on Thursday witnessed all but two Senate Republicans block the confirmation of President Obama’s pick of a director to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
In case that doesn’t ring a bell, the CFPB is a new government shop tasked with drafting financial reforms that restrict prepaid card fees, junk credit card hawkers and student loan sharks.
This latest move by Republicans to undermine any and all of Obama’s pet projects might easily be interpreted as a subtle approval of status quo on Wall Street and in the darkest corners of the consumer financial products market.
In other words, Republicans don’t appear serious about protecting hard-working, cash-strapped Americans. Besides, only really poor, irresponsible people get payday loans at check cashing stores. Right?
All joking aside, 20 million Americans interact with payday lenders annually, according to the Center for Responsible Lending. These are considered non-bank financial institutions that have had very little oversight.
Currently, the agency can enforce Congress-approved reforms, with some regulation on the aforementioned “bad guys.” Those regulations are tame compared to what Obama and agency creator Elizabeth Warren had in mind.
On Thursday, Obama expressed frustration over the reasons Republicans blocked the confirmation of Richard Cordray, the CFPB’s current director of enforcement.