Sens. Cruz, Hagerty, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Subject the CFPB to Regular Congressional Appropriations Process
Introduction comes as radical nominee to lead agency advances to Senate floor
WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.), and 15 of their Senate colleagues today introduced the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Accountability Act of 2021. Cosponsors of the bill include Sens. Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), Tim Scott (R-S.C.), John Kennedy (R-La.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), and Rick Scott (R-Fla.).
The legislation comes as Senate Democrats advanced the nomination of Rohit Chopra to be CFPB Director to the Senate floor for final confirmation. This bill would make the agency accountable to the American people by requiring its funding be appropriated by Congress, as is the case for other Executive Branch agencies. Currently, the Federal Reserve is required to provide whatever funding the CFPB requests within certain limits, a highly unusual arrangement that allows the CFPB to avoid the fiscal accountability the rest of the Executive Branch is subject.
Upon introduction, Sen. Cruz said:
"The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is largely unaccountable to Congress, and I have long said it is a waste of taxpayer funds. I am proud to join Sen. Hagerty on this bill to subject the CFPB's funding to Congressional approval and ensure it is rightfully held accountable by elected officials and the American people."
Sen. Hagerty added:
"Should Democrats choose to confirm President Biden's radical nominee, who has dodged questions throughout the confirmation process and is likely to continue the anti-job-creation, unaccountable CFPB conduct of the Obama Administration, the CFPB must be required to go through the regular congressional appropriations process to ensure public accountability. As a lifelong businessman, protecting consumers in the financial marketplace is important, but handing vast government regulatory power to an agency that is not accountable to the American people's elected representatives is improper. Americans deserve to have far greater input in this agency."
The CFPB was created by Congress in 2010 as an independent agency inappropriately unaccountable to Congress or the President. In June 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the law making the CFPB Director unaccountable to the President. The current funding process of the agency is similarly inappropriate.