The Senate Banking Committee will hold an oversight hearing today at 10 am (live video) on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau‘s semi-annual report to Congress. The witness will be CFPB director Rich Cordray, who received a PIRG-backed recess appointment from the President on January 4th. Expect some CFPB opponents on the committee to boycott; others to show up. Cordray will describe the CFPB’s achievements and outline its goals. In a report, Ten Reasons We Need The CFPB Now, issued on CFPB’s startup date, July 21, 2011, U.S. PIRG Education Fund and Americans For Financial Reform listed a number of problems for the CFPB to address and ideas to solve them.
The CFPB’s semi-annual report to Congress is 53 pages long and certainly worth a look. The CFPB is taking bold steps to improve and also to streamline regulation, level the playing field, give consumers more information and choices and make markets work. More on the report from Jeff Gelles of the Philly Inquirer (Philly.com).
Last week, at least one CFPB opponent, Senator Roger Wicker (MS), announced he would boycott the hearing in protest of the President’s recess appointment. Other opponent Senators said, “No, we’ll do our oversight jobs.”
Expect some of them to read from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce playbook. I’ve been told that the Chamber thinks that the CFPB’s practice of going out and talking with bankers, other credit providers and consumers around the country before it issues regulations is a bad idea. If that’s all they’ve got, bring it on. More on angles of attack from Phil Mattingly and Carter Dougherty at Bloomberg BusinessWeek.
Senior Director, Federal Consumer Program, PIRG
Ed oversees U.S. PIRG’s federal consumer program, helping to lead national efforts to improve consumer credit reporting laws, identity theft protections, product safety regulations and more. Ed is co-founder and continuing leader of the coalition, Americans For Financial Reform, which fought for the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010, including as its centerpiece the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. He was awarded the Consumer Federation of America's Esther Peterson Consumer Service Award in 2006, Privacy International's Brandeis Award in 2003, and numerous annual "Top Lobbyist" awards from The Hill and other outlets. Ed lives in Virginia, and on weekends he enjoys biking with friends on the many local bicycle trails.