House files court brief in support of independence of CFPB


The U.S. House of Representatives filed an amicus brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the independence of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

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The brief, filed in the case of Seila Law v. CFPB, follows an announcement by CFPB Director Kathy Kraninger that the agency would no longer defend the constitutionality of the CFPB director’s for-cause removal provision. The CFPB’s for-cause removal provision is designed to provide independence to the agency and prevent the president from removing the CFPB director at will.

The Trump Justice Department urged the Supreme Court to strike down the for-cause removal protection for the director of this independent regulatory agency.

“As part of comprehensive Wall Street reform, Congress established an independent cop on the beat to protect seniors, servicemembers, veterans, college students, and all consumers in America against the abusive and predatory financial marketplace practices that led up to the Great Recession,” House Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said. “By not defending the Consumer Bureau’s independence, the Trump Administration is choosing special interests over America’s consumers. As the lower courts have recognized in upholding the constitutionality of the for-cause provision, ‘Congress established the independent CFPB to curb fraud and promote transparency in consumer loans, home mortgages, personal credit cards, and retail banking.’ In the grip of President Trump, we have already seen the Consumer Bureau abandon its mission to protect the American people from unfair and predatory conduct.”

Rep. Maxine Waters, chair of the House Financial Services Committee, said the independence of the CFPB is essential.

“Despite previous court rulings that made it clear that the Consumer Bureau is constitutional and here to stay, Kathy Kraninger insists on working to undermine and politicize the agency at the expense of hardworking Americans,” Waters said. “This is yet another example of a Trump Administration appointee working to undermine the mission of the agency they were appointed to lead. I am pleased that the House of Representatives has filed a motion before the Supreme Court in support of the independence of the Consumer Bureau. As Chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee, I will continue to defend the strong, independent structure of this agency to ensure it fulfills its important mission of protecting consumers as Congress intended.”

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