Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s acting director Mick Mulvaney may have stolen Pruitt’s #CultureOfCorruption title from him. Yesterday, in a speech to a large gathering of some of the top bankers in the country, Mulvaney said, speaking of his time as a representative, “We had a hierarchy in my office in Congress. If you’re a lobbyist who never gave us money, I didn’t talk to you. If you’re a lobbyist who gave us money, I might talk to you.” This blatant endorsement and encouragement of pay-to-play is just the latest way Mulvaney is undermining the mission of the CFPB. Check out some of CAP’s ideas for anti-corruption solutions. Then, read about some of Mulvaney’s other actions:
- He said that the CFPB should haven’t to run a “Yelp” for bank customers. The database he is referring to here helps customers have a recourse for submitting complaints against these big banks.
- He thought the government shutdown was “cool,” and he has said that the CFPB is a “sad, sick joke.”
- Since taking the role as acting director, Mulvaney has ordered the CFPB to drop investigations into payday lenders—some of which contributed to Mulvaney’s congressional campaigns in the past.
Why is his undermining of the CFPB so devastating for consumers? The CFPB is a critical financial watchdog for American consumers; in fact, it has returned $12 billion to 29 million Americans who have been the victims of financial wrongdoing by big banks and other corporations. And it has specifically been a key protection for student borrowers and veterans, which are some of the most vulnerable groups in the financial industry.
ACTION OF THE DAY
#CultureOfCorruption. Mulvaney’s comments yesterday raise many ethical and legal concerns that should not go unexplored. Call CFPB today at 202-435-7000, and demand they investigate Mulvaney’s actions.
#UnfitToJudge. Yesterday, the Senate confirmed Kyle Duncan for a lifetime appointment to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans. The vote, which was cast with just one Democrat joining the Republicans, is a devastating blow to almost every issue progressives are fighting for—from LGBTQ rights to criminal justice reform. As an attorney, Duncan served as lead counsel in the Hobby Lobby case opposing the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive coverage mandate. And he has a history of defending discriminatory voting laws—one of which, according to a federal court, “target[ed] African Americans with almost surgical precision.” The Senate’s rubber stamping of Trump’s dangerous nominees to federal judgeships should concern all of us, as these individuals and their extremist ideologies will outlast the Trump administration for decades to come.
No More Delays on #DACA. Last night, a federal judge sharply rebuked the Trump administration for its termination of the DACA program (calling the reasons for termination “virtually unexplained” as well as “arbitrary and capricious”.) Judge John D. Bates gave the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) 90 days to explain its decision to terminate the DACA program, or if it cannot adequately do so, then DHS “must accept and process new as well as renewal DACA applications.” This is a positive step forward, as DACA-eligible individuals (who had not applied or had not had the chance to apply,) have been shut out of the program since September, and as such have been restricted from legally working, obtaining a driver’s license, potentially enrolling in higher education courses, and more. While this good news, advocates and allies must remember that what Dreamers need is a permanent legislative solution so they can live without fear of instability caused by Trump’s extremist views on immigrants.
Health Care in Arizona Election. Last night, Republican Debbie Lasko won the Arizona 8th District special election by five points. The winning margin was in sharp contrast to previous elections in the Republican stronghold, where Trump won by 21 points in the 2016 presidential election. What made the race so close? According to exit polling, the top issue for voters was health care, and Lasko’s opponent, Hiral Tipirneni, won big for voters who deemed health care was the top priority. Throughout the race, Tipirneni made it clear that quality affordable health care is a right for all Americans. So candidates running in 2018 may want to take notice: supporting health care for all Americans is not only the right thing to do, but a winning issue among voters.
UNDER THE RADAR
Right to Serve. Yesterday, in a rare split with the president, all four military service chiefs declared that transgender individuals serving in the military did not cause any harm to our nation’s troops. Senator Kristen Gillibrand said, “In the last two weeks, [the chiefs of staff of the Army, Marine Corps, and Navy] have told me that they have seen zero reports of issues of cohesion, discipline, morale as a result of open transgender service in their respective service branches.” Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Dave Goldfein echoed that sentiment in his own statement. Don’t forget that Trump’s transgender ban was not drafted by military leadership. It turns out that this has become Vice President Mike Pence’s pet project, and he drafted most of the plan. The courts seems to agree with the military chiefs, continually striking down the ban as Trump brings it up again and again.