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April 18, 2019

Trump Administration Killing Financial Consumer Protection Today and Other Federal Government Protections Tomorrow

It’s easy to get distracted by the outrage-of-the-day coming from the Trump White House.  But a must-read article posted by the New York Times ahead of its publication in this Sunday’s magazine really reinforces the importance of looking beyond the latest Tweet to see the serious and potentially lasting damage being done.  The piece, “Mick Mulvaney’s Master Class in Destroying the Government From Within,” takes a deep dive into the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) under Mick Mulvaney’s leadership and pays particular attention to the Bureau’s attempts to dramatically revamp the payday lending rule. 

As Better Markets President and CEO, Dennis Kelleher, was quoted saying in the book “Tailspin,” “Because of Trump’s tweets, the crazy things he does, and the crises he ignites, we’re not paying attention to what he’s doing to the day-to-day functions of the country.  He has spread all these termites throughout the departments and agencies who are eating away at all aspects of our government, day and night.  They don’t believe in the laws they have sworn an oath to enforce.” 

Nick Confessore details in the Times’ magazine that Mulvaney is the best (worst) example of that, but his successor at the CFPB has carried on his deregulatory zeal, as we detailed in an op-ed in The Hill, “CFPB is looking out for financial predators instead of Main Street,” focusing on some of the more outrageous elements of the CFPB’s payday lending proposal.  Interestingly, the New York Times article looks at the careful steps CFPB tried to take to avoid the appearance of overtly favoring industry in the gutting of the payday lending rule, which was also the subject of another Better Markets op-ed, “Keep industry insiders out of the payday loan rulemaking process.”



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