Top Democrat slams Mulvaney's CFPB leadership

by Ryan Smith29 Nov 2018

The ranking Democrat on the Senate Banking Committee has released a report accusing the acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau of systematically undermining the agency’s mission.

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) released the report to Congress on Tuesday. In the report, Brown accuses Acting CFPB Director Mick Mulvaney of undermining the bureau’s mission to protect consumers “in order to push the financial industry’s wish list.”

“The CFPB was a great success during its first six years,” Brown’s office said in a news release. “The Bureau obtained almost $12 billion in relief for more than 29 million working families while protecting consumers from a host of unfair, deceptive, and abusive practices, including predatory payday lenders, scam debt collectors, and illegal loans that target service members.”

“Mr. Mulvaney is dismantling the agency from the inside, hiring a group of political cronies and paying them enormous salaries to run the agency into the ground,” the report said. “While he has repeatedly claimed that he is simply doing what the law requires, contending he will ‘execute the statutory mandate of the bureau to protect consumers’ and ‘go no further,’ a closer look shows that Mr. Mulvaney has cherry-picked the law to promote his ideological agenda and do favors for special interests. At times, he seems to ignore the law altogether.”

The report accused Mulvaney of stripping the CFPB’s fair-lending office of its enforcement powers contrary to the instructions of Congress, politicizing the bureau by “installing hand-picked cronies,” and ignoring consumer concerns in required reports, among a host of other things. The report also accused Mulvaney of hiding the agency’s activities from the public, even though, as a member of Congress, he had denounced the CFPB for a lack of transparency.

The report also said that Kathy Kraninger, President Donald Trump’s nominee to succeed Mulvaney, “is standing ready to be a rubber stamp for his disastrous policies,” Brown’s office said.

“President Trump should nominate a serious candidate, with real consumer protection experience and a genuine commitment to the Bureau’s mission, to lead the CFPB,” it said.