Trump administration aims to strip power from CFPB

by Ryan Smith28 Feb 2017

The Trump administration has the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in its sights, considering a proposal to eliminate some of the agency’s authority.

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said that the administration was looking at a proposal from Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas), chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, to eliminate the CFPB’s authority to supervise financial firms, according to a Bloomberg report.

The administration is also “absolutely on board” to change the CFPB’s funding process so that the agency would receive its budget through congressional appropriations, Mnuchin said. Currently, the CFPB receives its funding through the Federal Reserve – a system critics say gives the agency too little accountability to lawmakers.

The CFPB has been in the crosshairs since President Donald Trump took office. Hensarling has called the agency “Orwellian” and urged Trump to fire CFPB Director Richard Cordray “as soon as possible.” Last month, Republican leaders alleged that Cordray may have violated federal law when issuing a 2015 regulation. And earlier this month, Texas Republicans Sen. Ted Cruz and Rep. John Ratcliffe both introduced bills which would completely dismantle the agency.But Democrats have vowed to fight any attempts to defang the agency, which they say serves a vital role in protecting consumers from unscrupulous business practices. Last month, Democrats on the House Financial Services Committee sent Trump a letter warning that any attempt to remove Cordray before his term expired would be met with strong opposition from Democrats, and even possible legal action.


Related stories:
Democrats promise to fight any attempt to oust CFPB director
Republicans: CFPB director may have violated federal law
Hensarling: Trump needs to fire Cordray ‘as soon as possible’


 

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