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Ms. MOORE. I will tell you, Mr. Chair, if the Affordable Care Act, so-called ObamaCare, is the ultimate tempest for the Tea Party pot, then I guess the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the CFPB, is a very, very close second.
Since assuming the majority in 2010, House Republicans have passed bill after bill to gut and undermine the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Frankly, I have just lost track of all the bills and attempts by the majority to undermine our Nation's top financial consumer watchdog.
It is well documented that Congress wanted its funding to be free of political influence when it created the Bureau. In order to protect the consumers, it needed to be free of political influence.
So, Mr. Chair, my amendment strikes the provision in the Financial Services Appropriations bill, section 501, that the House is considering today, as it is nothing more than yet another effort by the majority to derail the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau from its mission to protect consumers.
Originally, I had my staff draft an amendment to delete sections 501 and 502, but after consulting with the CBO, I was informed that striking section 502 would score as a cost to the bill.
I wanted to make sure that there would be no objection based on adding a cost to the bill, so in order to make my amendment in order, my amendment just strikes section 501 and not 502.
Let me be clear, Mr. Chairman, both sections 501 and 502 of the bill before us today undermine the CFPB. They would alter the independent funding process and vision for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau that was established in Dodd-Frank, the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.
This is consistent with other independent banking regulatory agencies. Other independent banking regulatory agencies are not at the beck and call of the Appropriations Committee and whoever is in control of the political environment.
What has the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, our Nation's consumer watchdog, done for us lately? What has it done for consumers?
Well, Mr. Chair, the agency has refunded $3 billion to 9.7 million victims of unfair, deceptive, and abusive practices in financial markets since 2011. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has helped millions of people and has stopped fraud.
The dedicated mission of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, to protect consumers of financial products from fraud and deceptive schemes, inspires trust in our markets, which attracts capital and promotes the allocation of capital to productive, legitimate endeavors.
The CFPB is the tough cop on Wall Street, but it is also the fair cop on the Wall Street beat.
The amendment before you, Mr. Chair, that I am offering affirms the current independent funding source for the CFPB, which is the best way to preserve the integrity and independence of the agency.
Now, I know that Republicans plead that this provision is about oversight or transparency. But when you scratch the surface, you will realize that the claim is just not credible. It is just yet another attempt to undermine the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and, ultimately, it seeks to defund the CFPB and make it a paper tiger. It
seeks a return to the bad old days, Mr. Chair, and bad old ways that set the stage for the 2008 financial crisis.
I really do urge all Members to support my amendment and to support the working independence of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau so the agency may continue to ensure U.S. markets are the fairest and most robust in the world.
Mr. Chairman, I reserve the balance of my time.
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Ms. MOORE. Well, I can tell you, Mr. Chairman, Wall Street went berserk because we didn't fund the SEC and the CFTC. That is the problem. These watchdog agencies are charged with an onerous task, and we don't provide the appropriations, and this is what is going to happen to the CFPB, as well, under this bill.
Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
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