Big Business Sent Senators $150 Million to Lobby Against Consumer Protection Nominee
The 43 Republican senators said they would vote against any candidate named.
The 43 senators who signed a letter in which they pledged to vote against any nominee that would head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and John McCain, received nearly $150 million in campaign contributions from business interests, Public Campaign Action Fund data shows. President Barack Obama recently re-nominated Richard Cordray (pictured) to serve as its director. Obama used a recess appointment to install Cordray a year ago, but that appointment only continues to the end of 2013.
John McCain has by far received the most money, $76 million, from the financial sector, with McConnell in second place, collecting $7.4 million in campaign funds. McConnell received large chunks of that money from Capital One (NYSE:COF) and American Express (NYSE:AXP), which donated $121,500 and $69,950 respectively. Ranking member of the Senate Banking Committee, Mike Crapo, received $2.4 million.
Senators Bob Corker and Rob Portman did not sign the pledge. Corker, a member of the Senate Banking Committee, has recently spent time talking to freshman lawmaker, and rejected CFPB nominee Elizabeth Warren, reported Politico.
The senators will not vote for any nominee of either party until the agency's structure is changed to make it more accountable, McConnell said.
"The CFPB as created by the deeply flawed Dodd-Frank Act is one of the least accountable in Washington," said McConnell. "Today's letter reaffirms a commitment by 43 senators to fix the poorly thought structure of this agency that has unprecedented reach and control over individual consumer decisions - but an unprecedented lack of oversight and accountability."
The Republican senators would prefer that the CFPB be funded through Congressional appropriations instead of through the Federal Reserve and that federal regulators verify that CFRB rules would adequately protect banks financial soundness, Reuters reported.
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