Statement by Demos on the Financial Choice Act

Release Date: 
June 8, 2017

New York, NY - With the House of Representatives poised to vote on H.R. 10, the Financial CHOICE Act, Amy Traub, Associate Director, Policy and Research at Demos, issued the following statement:

“The CHOICE Act is a lavish giveaway to Wall Street at the expense of American consumers and the overall stability of our nation’s financial system. The CHOICE Act will destroy the common-sense reforms passed after the Great Recession, tearing down critical financial protections and decimating the power of the highly effective Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

“Our country has still not fully recovered from the last financial crisis and decades of deregulation that produced it. The Great Recession and the housing crash devastated American families, disproportionately harming families of color and stripping 53 percent of the total household wealth of Black families and 66 percent of Latino families’ wealth.

“There is no question that unscrupulous banks and other financial corporations could dramatically increase their profits if the CFPB didn’t prevent them from cheating consumers. That’s exactly why Congress must reject this legislation and act to protect the agency.

“Since the CFPB opened its doors in 2011, it has obtained nearly $12 billion in relief for 29 million Americans mistreated by unprincipled financial companies. The agency has stood up to credit card companies deceiving customers, mortgage lenders tricking borrowers into unsafe loans, debt collectors, car salespeople, and bankers aiming to defraud American consumers. By curtailing the CFPB’s supervision and enforcement authority, constraining its jurisdiction, and undermining its independence, the CHOICE Act would hamstring the CFPB and give a green light to financial companies to resume abusive practices.

“The CHOICE Act would lead our nation in the wrong direction, further skewing our public policies towards the interests of top donors and away from the needs of working families and people of color as a whole. Demos condemns this bill and urges members of Congress to vote against it. In addition, Congress must oppose any efforts to weaken financial reform and undermine the independence and authority of the CFPB through other legislative vehicles.”

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