Washington, D.C. – At today’s U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs executive session, U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) delivered a statement in opposition to Kathy Kraninger’s nomination as the next director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).
Cortez Masto brought attention to Acting Director Mick Mulvaney’s elimination of the office for students and young consumers, an office tasked to protect student loan borrowers, and the Consumer Advisory Board: “Because of these actions, servicemembers, students and seniors are left asking, ‘Who is fighting for me?’ Well that is the question before this committee. Will Kathy Kraninger stand up against powerful special interests and fight for servicemembers, students and seniors that need a champion? Unfortunately, the answer is no.”
Cortez Masto highlighted her partnership with the CFPB as Nevada’s attorney general during the financial crisis: “Prior to coming here, I was the attorney general of the state of Nevada and during that time, if it weren’t for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, we would’ve had a much more difficult time reining in the Big Banks and Wall Street and protecting consumers. I saw firsthand, working with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the benefits it has brought to consumers not just in Nevada, in protecting them from predatory lenders, but across this country.”
Cortez Masto discussed the CFPB’s role protecting military families and service members and Acting Director Mick Mulvaney’s decision to no longer monitor banks and payday lenders in compliance with the Military Lending Act: “I was on the ground with Holly Petraeus at Nellis Air Force Base, talking about and to military families and servicemembers about the protections that we can provide them from those predators. Holly Petraeus, who was representing the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau at Nellis Air Force Base, was there talking with me. Let me just tell you the respect she had for those servicemembers and families, and the comfort that she brought to them in talking about how we can help protect them and their financial well-being for the future. And that’s not just at Nellis Air Force Base that she was there and that CFPB has provided that type of support. It is across the country. And I saw it firsthand as someone who was fighting for those families as the attorney general of the state.”
Cortez Masto concluded: “If we can’t get from Ms. Kraninger the transparency and what accountability we can hold her responsible for as her current role in OMB, what makes us think that she’s going to be accountable and transparent at the CFPB? Particularly under the current director who is undermining and sabotaging the CFPB. My concern is that she’s going to carry out the same role that Mick Mulvaney wants her to do. That to me is no protection for consumers across this country. That is undermining an agency that I know, that I worked with personally, that brought those protections to the very people we sit and talk about every single day. For that reason, I cannot support her.”