Rohit Chopra, Biden’s choice to lead CFPB, gets Senate confirmation hearing tomorrow

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The Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee will hold a remote hearing tomorrow on the appointment of Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Commissioner Rohit Chopra as director of the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection. The hearing, which begins at 10 a.m. ET, will be broadcast live and available here. Chopra’s hearing will be the second, after Gary Gensler’s, to chair the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Chopra previously served at CFPB as the student loan ombudsman, during which he criticized schools, banks and services in their management of loans and the lack of transparency with borrowers.

In November 2020, Chopra issued a statement regarding the FTC’s enforcement action against debt collector Midwest Recovery Systems, including these highlights:

  • The FTC’s stand-alone debt collection strategy often results in results where victims receive only a tiny percentage of their losses, if any at all.
  • To better serve the public and end debt collection abuse, the FTC should work with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Joint actions will help make the victims whole through access to the CFPB Civil Sanctions Fund and reduce duplication of efforts.
  • As Commissioners, we must stop ignoring Congress and recalibrate agency priorities and strategies in the area of ​​financial services.

inside ARM already published additional information on Chopra’s position on debt collection.

When then-president-elect Biden appointed Chopra as a principal investigator of the Competitive Enterprise Institute Jean Berlau commented,

“The CFPB has enormous power over community banks, credit unions and small businesses that provide all forms of credit. It also still lacks accountability to Congress, as it receives funds not from the appropriation process, but automatically from the Federal Reserve. Therefore, it behooves the Senate to question Rohit Chopra, President-elect Biden’s expected candidate for CFPB director in depth, about his views on consumer choice, financial privacy and regulation through ‘a fair process rather than arbitrarily by application.

“During the tenure of CFPB Director Richard Cordray, under whom Chopra served, lawmakers on both sides expressed concern about CFPB’s mandates on community banks and credit unions. The United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia also ruled unanimously in PHH v. CFPB (2016) that the retroactive application by the CFPB of its new interpretation of a law violated the constitutional guarantee of due process and missed “Rule of law, 101”. The Senate must grill Chopra to help ensure the CFPB does not revert to those Corday-era political proceedings that received bipartisan condemnation. ”

A Washington post January’s article included this commentary from Ed Mierzwinski, senior director of the Federal Consumer Program at the U.S. Public Interest Research Group,

“When you only tackle last dollar crooks and pop-up small businesses, you’re not sending the message to the big banks, big debt collectors and big credit bureaus that there is a sheriff in town. . As soon as it is confirmed, Rohit will bring a renewed sense of urgency.

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