WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week MAGA Congressman Andy Barr (R-KY), a belligerent critic of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and proud financial industry lapdog, said the quiet part out loud and inadvertently undercut the long-time cause of right-wing special interests and Wall Street who want to gut the CFPB and leave consumers vulnerable to financial industry greedy, fraud and abuse.
During U.S. Supreme Court arguments this week in Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) vs Community Financial Services Association of America (CFSA), Justices pointed out there is zero precedent or history supporting the payday industry’s position as Congress has used similar stable funding mechanisms since the founding of the republic. Even conservative Justice Brett Kavanaugh appeared skeptical of claims made by the predatory lending industry plaintiffs that the CFPB’s independent funding structure runs afoul of the constitution, noting Congress could simply tweak the agency’s funding mechanism “tomorrow.” Congressman Barr took issue with that, exclaiming to Politico: “Well, actually, that’s not true, because we’ve been trying to change it for 11 years, and the political conditions have not existed.”
Congressman Barr, who desperately wants the CFPB incapacitated to the benefit of his Wall Street and predatory lender donors, just admitted Congress has the power to change the CFPB’s independent funding structure if enough lawmakers want to. But because right-wing lawmakers have failed to dismantle the CFPB and gut consumer protections for millions, due to their choice of chaos over governance, they’re now rallying behind a meritless Hail Mary lawsuit brought by shady predatory lenders,” said Accountable.US’ Liz Zelnick, the watchdog group behind the ‘Defend American Consumers’ Campaign.
“The fact remains, independent funding structures, like those used by the CFPB, have been around since the nation’s founding and that independence is why the CFPB has been so successful protecting families from industry scams, discrimination and predatory behavior. The end goal of the CFPB’s opponents like Andy Barr is letting their financial industry mega-donors write their own rules at the expense of average families.”
Congressman Barr’s #1 industry contributor is the Finance, Insurance, and Real Estate Sector – raking in over $6.8 million from these industries he oversees on the House Financial Services Committee. It is no wonder why in four previous and consecutive Congresses, Rep. Barr has introduced The Taking Account Of Bureaucrats’ Spending (TABS) Act that seeks to replace the Bureau’s successful independent funding structure with one beholden to the political whims of Congress. The frequent and hostile rhetoric against the CFPB from Barr and fellow MAGA members of the House Financial Services Committee make clear they would zero-fund the agency if given the chance, either by Congress or the Supreme Court.