Consumers Union: Americans Deserve A Financial Watchdog Not A Big Bank Lapdog

As some members of the Congress and Senate continue to do their best to neuter the still-nascent Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, our benevolent benefactors at Consumers Union are asking the folks on Capitol Hill to not put a muzzle on the CFPB.

CU has written members of both the House and Senate to address the pitfalls of the three bills passed last week by the House Financial Services Committee that would hamstring the CFPB’s ability to rein in abusive financial practices.

One bill would replace the CFPB’s director with a five-member commission. Another bill would make it easier for a panel of financial regulators to reverse actions of the new agency. And a third bill would prevent the agency from using its new authority in July unless it is led by a Senate-confirmed director, a move that would unduly politicize and delay the operations of the CFPB.

“As we have seen from our most recent economic downturn, strong consumer protection is essential for a strong financial system,” reads the letter from CU. “Congress should stand with consumers, not the big banks and Wall Street firms.”

Additionally, CU has taken out a full-page ad (scroll down to see the full image) in a number of papers saying that “American consumers deserve a financial watchdog. Not a big bank lapdog.”

From the ad:

Credit card rip-offs. Shady mortgages. Confusing fine print. For too long big banks and financial institutions have gone unchecked while average Americans paid the price. Fortunately, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was created to protect consumers and stop deceptive financial practices. But right now some in Congress are teaming up with banking industry lobbyists to weaken the CFPB before it even gets off the ground. America can’t afford for that to happen.

To voice your opinion about this anti-consumer legislation, go to DefendYourDollars.org to write your representative.

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