Amicus Brief Says Trump’s Attempt to Control Agency Leadership Endangers Consumers
Chicago —(ENEWSPF)—December 11, 2017
By: Rosemary Piser
On Friday, Attorney General Lisa Madigan joined 17 Attorneys General in filing an amicus brief in support of English v. Mulvaney, a lawsuit challenging the appointment of Mick Mulvaney as the acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The brief argues that maintaining the CFPB’s independence is crucial to protecting consumers, and that Congress ensured this independence by creating a specific plan for succession.
Madigan said when announcing the filing, “In order for the CFPB to continue to protect consumers from corporate fraud, it is critical that the agency remains independent. Someone who does not believe the CFPB should exist is inappropriate to lead the agency.”
The CFPB was designed to serve as an independent consumer advocate and check on the power of large financial-services business. When Richard Cordray, the first director of the CFPB, stepped down last month, his deputy director, Leandra English, became the acting director consistent with the terms of the CFPB act.
The Trump Administration cited an earlier federal law claiming it had authority to appoint an acting director and selected Mulvaney, the director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Mulvaney has been an outspoken critic of the CFPB and, while he served in Congress, voted to weaken the agency’s authority and questioned its existence.
The amicus brief, argues that allowing the Administration to circumvent the law regarding who serves as acting director seriously compromises the agency’s independence.
The Attorneys General stated:
“Attempts to dismantle Congress’s careful and concerted efforts in structuring the CFPB as a truly independent agency would, if successful, harm the Amici States’ ability to enforce the many consumer financial laws that protect their residents.”
Joining Madigan in filing the brief were the attorneys general of California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington and the District of Columbia.
The amicus brief is available here.
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