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The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has a positive-sounding name. But in five and a half years since its creation, the CFPB has proven that the agency is merely an excuse for a massive expansion of federal regulatory power. The CFPB doesn’t protect consumers, as its name suggests. Rather, the American people need protection from the CFPB.
It’s time to end this failed experiment. Let’s return the CFPB’s regulatory responsibilities to the specific departments and agencies covering the relevant industries, and of course, to the states that have been responsible for basic consumer protection for a long, long time. I should know. As a former attorney general of Virginia, I took my responsibility to protect consumers seriously.
The Dodd-Frank Act created the CFPB as an unaccountable agency, with a director that could not be removed, a budget from the Federal Reserve that was self-determined, and sweeping legislative, judicial and executive powers vested in the person of the director. Indeed, this design was such an affront to the U.S. Constitution that a U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit declared the agency’s single-director structure unconstitutional. In what should be an unsurprising development, the CFPB has abused its unaccountable power.