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The Year in Review: Consumers Get A New Watchdog

David Callahan

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau officially opened for business in July 2011.

The CFPB was the brainchild of Elizabeth Warren, who was appointed by the President to get the agency up and running. After the financial collapse wiped out nearly $11 trillion of household wealth, much of it tangled up in sub-prime mortgages, the creation of the Bureau was included in the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill.

The CFPB protects consumers from confusing, and often, predatory financial practices, through rule-making, enforcement and research. Republicans vehemently oppose the Bureau and are seeking to weaken its authority. They’ve pledged to filibuster any nominated director until the teeth are knocked out of the agency’s power, and so far, have made good on their promise.

President Obama nominated Richard Cordray in July to become the CFPB’s first director, but his nomination was blocked by the Senate in December by a vote of 53-45. In the meantime, with day-to-day operations overseen by Raj Date, the CFPB has begun its important work—which includes such socialistic activities as protecting seniors and military personnel from financial abuses.

Read more from Demos in The Year in Review: What 2011 Meant For The 99% >>>