As President Trump prepares to take office in the coming months, there’s going to be a long laundry list of things that his administration has hinted that they will take the initiative to fix; The Trans-Pacific Trade proposal, NAFTA, Obamacare, the Keystone XL pipeline delay, the Dakota Access pipeline mess, and the list goes on and on.
Lying on the fringes of people’s radar is another problem caused by Democrats during the Obama administration – the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, or CFPB.
The CFP uttered forth from an unholy union of the late 2007 recession and Elizabeth Warren, and was expressed legislatively as the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. The Act created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The CFPB consolidates most Federal consumer financial protection authority in one place. And as recognized by the courts, that’s unquestionable authority is just the tip of the iceberg.
The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that the CFPB’s structure violated the Constitution’s separation of powers because the agency’s director lacks enough oversight – in particular, he isn’t sufficiently answerable to the president, according to a Wall Street Journal report.
The decision came as the court set aside a CFPB enforcement action against mortgage lender PHH.
“In light of the consistent historical practice under which independent agencies have been headed by multiple commissioners or board members, and in light of the threat to individual liberty posed by a single-Director independent agency … We therefore hold that the CFPB is unconstitutionally structured,” the court ruled.
“In light of the threat to individual liberty posed by a single-director independent agency..” It has to be universally recognized what when an Obama era-court hands down a decision that says an agency has too much power that the law creating that agency is deeply, deeply flawed.
The CFPB wasn’t originally sold this way. At the time, it was claimed that “implement and, where applicable, enforce Federal consumer financial law consistently for the purpose of ensuring that all consumers have access to markets for consumer financial products and services and that markets for consumer financial products and services are fair, transparent, and competitive.”
Unfortunately, that hasn’t really happened, and it has been at the expense of creating an autocracy. All the CFPB has managed to accomplish is imposing high costs on the finance sector and consumers while reducing the choice of products and services within the consumer financial marketplace.
The CFPB has had a target drawn it for some time among Republicans, including those who had been running for president.
In 2015, Senator Ted Cruz called for its elimination as part of his campaign platform, and Texas Republican Representatives Randy Neugebauer and Roger Williams argued in an issue of the American Banker that the CFPB “is responsible for some of the most consequential regulations that are hurting economic growth and stifling opportunity for individuals and families across America.”
According to an article in The Hill at the time:
They argued that instead of helping consumers by regulating and reining in larger financial institutions, the CFPB has squashed smaller banks and limited options for consumers.
“The CFPB’s regulatory zeal has stripped American consumers and businesses of their freedom of choice and has limited their access to capital — all in the name of a ‘we know best’ attitude from Washington,” Ratcliffe said.
Overzealous overregulation from an agency that’s been unconstitutionally operating outside of government. All to the detriment of local, small town lenders who are just trying to do what they were intended to do – serve the banking needs of their communities.
If it’s the president elect’s intent to fix the problems with the economy caused by the Obama administration – add the dismantling of Consumer Finance Protection Board to the list of problems that the incoming Trump administration as well as the Republican Congress need to deal with in short order.