Maxine Waters Says She Will Focus on CFPB in 2019

Jan 4, 2019 | News

Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA-43), who will head the House Financial Services Committee in 2019, stated in a recent interview that her priority for the next two years will be to “try and undo the damage that [Mick Mulvaney] has done” to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).  

In an interview with Chris Hayes on MSNBC, Rep. Waters said that among the responsibilities of the House Financial Services Committee, “I’ve been focused on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. That was the centerpiece of the Dodd/Frank reform.” Waters added that Mulvaney has “tried to dismantle the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. And before we got the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in the Dodd/Frank legislation, consumers had no real protection. Nobody was looking out for them. And so, this is extremely important.”

In response to a question about Wall Street’s influence in Washington, D.C., Waters suggested that large financial institutions do indeed have a lot of influence on certain congressmen, but Waters cautioned big banks against coming to Congress with “all of these bills where you’re trying to undo everything that we have done and you’re sending a message to your investors that you’re looking out for them. I want a moratorium on this.”

At the same time, Waters did acknowledge the importance of the financial services sector to the U.S. economy, saying, “We need the banks. We need them to operate and provide certain kind of services.” Nevertheless, they should not “use their influence and their power to basically control the decisions of Congress.”

As the chair of the powerful House Financial Services Committee, Waters will have a lot of control over hearings and investigations. She expressed excitement over many of the younger congresswomen and men who may join the committee.

“The newer members are going to be very vocal. They’re going to raise questions,” said Waters. “You’re going to see a new kind of approach in the hearings that we have. They’re going to come right out with it. They won’t be ashamed. They won’t be afraid. They really believe in what they’re doing. I think that’s good for the institution.”

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